Wednesday, November 11, 2015

UIS researchers studying Hepatitis C among homeless

Five hundred dollars may seem a paltry sum for a crowdfunding effort these days. But the $500 being sought by University of Illinois Springfield researchers will be used for research that could save lives and thousands of dollars in treatment costs for those with Hepatitis C.

UIS researchers are for the first time using crowdfunding as a way to purchase rapid testing kits and other equipment needed to study Hepatitis C in the central Illinois homeless population.

Two professors want to test members of the homeless population in Springfield, Bloomington, Champaign, Decatur and Peoria to find the number of people infected with the virus and conduct genotype testing to look at transmission of the disease.

“We hope to limit the spread of Hepatitis C,” said Kanwal Alvarez, assistant professor of biology at UIS.”

Alvarez and Josiah Alamu, associate professor of public health, are leading the study along with Dr. Janak Koirala, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine. Several UIS students also are working on the research study.

The story was reported by The State Journal-Register on November 11, 2015.

Read the article online