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#ORPH Open Orphan – Why scientists are deliberately infecting volunteers with Covid-19

If you are going to catch covid-19, jokes Jacob Hopkins, a university student, the safest place to do it is in a hospital. So in March Mr Hopkins lay down on a bed in the Royal Free Hospital in London while doctors placed droplets of liquid carrying the sars-cov-2 virus into his nose. Mr Hopkins was one of 36 participants in the first “human challenge trial” (hct) for covid-19.

Human trials are a valuable part of medical research. Studying sick people in the controlled environment of a lab allows scientists to collect valuable information about how diseases work much more quickly than relying on messy and uncertain data from the real world. Since the second world war, around 40,000 volunteers have allowed themselves to be infected with everything from malaria and typhoid to dengue fever and cholera.

Read the full Economist article here.
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