Serological Sciences Network

Overview

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Scientist fits a well plate on a machine

The National Cancer Institute’s Serological Sciences Network (SeroNet) is the nation’s largest coordinated effort to study the immune response to COVID-19 and increase the nation’s antibody testing capacity.  

SeroNet is a collaboration across 25 biomedical research institutions to enhance understanding of the immune response to the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. 

The Serology Laboratory coordinates much of the SeroNet research and is leading COVID-19 serology standardization efforts for the network.  

The SeroNet Coordinating Center, headquartered at and managed by the Vaccine, Immunity, and Cancer Directorate at the Frederick National Laboratory, provides program logistical support.  

SeroNet launched in October 2020, less than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic. It aims to answer critical questions regarding serology and the pandemic. 

SeroNet is a major component of the National Cancer Institute’s response to COVID-19. In April 2020, the National Cancer Institute received an emergency appropriation of $306 million from Congress to develop, validate, and implement serological testing and associated technologies. More than half of the funding is devoted to SeroNet. 

Innovations

In early 2021, the Frederick National Laboratory supported the development and production of the Human SARS-CoV-2 Serology Standard for calibration in COVID-19 studies conducted around the U.S. and world. 

Lab scientists have worked with the National Cancer Institute, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, other government agencies, and universities to develop sample evaluation panels to evaluate the performance (sensitivity and specificity) of antibody tests developed by external organizations before they are made available to the public.