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New study will research whether you can get re-infected with COVID after getting the Moderna vaccine

Students at Texas A&M Kingsville and A&M Corpus Christi will be among 12,000 across the nation who are part of this new study.

KINGSVILLE, Texas — Students at Texas A&M Kingsville and Corpus Christi are about to get the opportunity to be part of a huge national COVID-19 research study on the Moderna vaccine. They will be among the 12,000 college students across the country participating. 

Here's how it works:

Researchers will divide the students into two groups and over the next week to 10 days, the first group will receive the vaccine. Then, four months later, the next group of college students will get the shots.

"We will collect nasal samples, they will also collect saliva samples and we will also collect blood samples which we will use to try and determine if any type of infection has occurred," Dr. George Udeani, Clinical Professor and Department Head of the Pharmacy Practice said.

Dr. Udeani will also be the principal investigator for the arm of the study in Kingsville. He said this study is also going to look at close contacts, which is mostly everyone on a college campus. Contact tracing will also be used and may play the most critical part of this Prevent COVID U Study.

"Most importantly, we are going to be collecting data from 3 to 4,000 other students," Dr. Udeani said. "The students are going to identify as prospective contacts, individuals who are roommates, for example, who come in contact with them on a regular basis.”

All of this information will hopefully give researchers more solid answers about the Moderna vaccine.

"We want to know whether or not if you get this vaccine whether or not you can get re-infected," Dr. Udeani said. "You can get infected with the SARS virus and if you do get infected how severe is that infection?"

Those college students from our two local campuses who want to be part of the study can sign up here. Researchers hope to have this study finished by sometime in the fall. 

For the latest updates on coronavirus in the Coastal Bend, click here.

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