Players and team employees of Major League Baseball are now participating in a huge study that will test up to 10,000 people for coronavirus antibodies and, hopefully, will offer researchers a better understanding of the effect the virus could have across the U.S. and the world.

According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, the study is being ran by Stanford University, USC and the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory (SMRTL). The study will use testing kits which draw blood from the patient and can offer results within 10 minutes. These tests are said to detect the prevalence of IgM, which is an antibody that is seen relatively early in coronavirus cases. The test also is said to detect IgG, which is a second form that is said to last longer in patients after infection.

A positive test would confirm that a person did contract coronavirus, even if said person is asymptomatic. Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, a professor of medicine at Stanford who will look over the data gathered in the test, said in a statement;

This is the first study of national scope where we’re going to get a read on a large number of communities throughout the United States to understand how extensive the spread of the virus has been. This will be the very first of those. Why MLB versus other employers? I’ve reached out to others, but MLB moved by far the fastest. They’ve been enormously cooperative and flexible. We’re trying to set up a scientific study that would normally take years to set up, and it’s going to be a matter of weeks.”

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya

It should be added that MLB did not pay for the chance to participate in the study. According to Bhattacharya, the study is being funded through donors. Also, doctors involved in the study are saying that the information collected isn’t expected to bring baseball back any sooner. Dr. Daniel Eichner, the president of SMRTL also spoke on MLB’s participation.

MLB did not partner with us for any selfish reason to get their sport back sooner. They jumped in for public health policy. That was their intention and their only intention.

Dr. Daniel Eichner

Stay tuned to GCSN for more on the study, and more sports leagues that could potentially get involved.

Featured Photo: MLB

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