NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) -- A groundbreaking study underway right now in Connecticut is looking for volunteers who may still be dealing with long-lasting effects of COVID-19.

This study just launched on Friday.

It’s taking world-class researchers at Yale, and a grass-roots community of long haul COVID survivors, teaming up to study how the vaccine is impacting those with persistent symptoms.

“This study is really to try and understand how the vaccines are helping the long haulers, so that we can come up with a better therapy,” said Dr. Akiko Iwasaki.

Since the start of the pandemic, Iwasaki and her team at Yale have been at the forefront, researching the coronavirus.

“Long haul disease can be driven either by a persistent virus infection or auto immune disease,” Iwasaki said.

Now, along with community of COVID survivors, they’re exploring a link between the vaccine and how it’s helping some long-haul patients feel better.

“I was initially sick in March and then I was sick through in July and August,” said Diana Berrent.

She was diagnosed with COVID-19 in early March of 2020. She launched Survivor Corps, which is a group for patients, survivors, and families, now with more than 165,000 members.

“At Survivor Corps, we ran a poll of about 1,000 people, finding that 40% felt some degree of relief of their long COVID symptoms after having the vaccine. Now it doesn’t mean the vaccine is the cure, but it offers this breadcrumb trail to find the answers,” Berrent said.

Researchers at Yale are looking for local volunteers who are not yet vaccinated, and are still dealing with the lasting effects of the coronavirus.

The study will include providing three different sets of blood and saliva samples, one before getting the vaccine, and then six and 12 weeks after.

“Because of grass root organizations like Survivor Corps, we are able to kind of get real time information from patients, getting the vaccine, feeling better,” Iwasaki said.

The study is open to anyone 18 and older, still dealing with symptoms.

For more information, email or click here.

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