Cash for COVID: U.K. study pays people to get reinfected


A U.K. study is offering young, healthy people who have recovered from COVID-19 the opportunity to relive the experience — all in the name of science. The University of Oxford study, known as a “human challenge,” hopes to uncover how much of the virus is required for reinfection, how the immune system responds and how long protective immunity lasts. The one-year study, which will pay participants aged 18 to 30 around $8,700 for their time, is set to begin this month after receiving ethics approval, according to Yahoo! News. “Challenge studies tell us things that other studies cannot because, unlike natural infection, they are tightly controlled,” said Helen McShane, chief investigator of the study and a professor of vaccinology at the department of paediatrics at the University of Oxford. “When we reinfect these participants, we will know exactly how their immune system has reacted to the first COVID infection, exactly when the second infection occurs, and exactly how much virus they got. “As well as enhancing our basic understanding, this may help us to design tests that can accurately predict whether people are protected.”

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