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ASU researchers conduct immune-boosting study to help COVID-19 patients

Arizona State University is recruiting people who have tested positive with COVID-19 for a study involving natural supplements.

PHOENIX — We are still learning a lot about the coronavirus, including COVID-19 recovery.

Arizona State University researchers are studying adults who have recently tested positive for COVID-19. They're looking for more people in Arizona to participate.

Samantha Fessler is an ASU graduate researcher. She’s working the study to find a way to reduce inflammation in people who’ve had COVID-19.

"We are seeking out individuals who were asymptomatic or who have had mild to moderate symptoms and have been able to resolve these symptoms at home," Fessler said.

Fessler shared the need with 12 News on Nextdoor. 

"This will go on through the early months of next year, and we are looking to recruit about 120 people overall," Fessler said.

In the study, ASU's nutrition and biodesign programs are analyzing two natural food-based supplements. One from turmeric and another from egg yolk and peanuts. 

Dr. Carol Johnston, an ASU nutrition professor, is leading the study. 

"We're going to see if these two naturalistic approaches as compared to a placebo versus the active ingredient, if they can actually help to improve these circulating mediators of inflammation," Fessler said.

If the supplements take down inflammation in this trial, Fessler is hopeful they could help with other inflammatory problems, not just COVID-19.

"We're hoping we can show these supplements can be efficacious as a kind of adjunct to people's normal dietary habits," she said. "Because they're natural and from real food sources."

And when it comes to safety, Fessler doesn't have concerns unless there's a food allergy. She also says they're taking strict COVID-19 precautions when conducting the study. 

Participants take the supplement pills for four weeks and give blood samples. Trial information can be found here.

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