Mass PFAS-Cov Study

A Research Study investigating Immune Response to

COVID-19 Vaccines in Relation to Exposure to

Per- and Polyfluorinated Substances (PFAS)

Participant Information

Who is eligible to participate?

To be a Study-participant, you need to:

  • be 18 years or older OR age 12 - 17 with Parental Consent, AND

  • have been fully vaccinated for Covid-19 for at least one month, AND

  • not yet received a "Booster" Covid-19 vaccination, AND

  • not be sick currently with a fever (greater than 100.4° F) currently, AND

  • not have any immunocompromising condition such as Cancer, HIV, organ transplant, or any radiation therapy, AND

  • be a resident of Massachusetts.

How do interested people apply?

Click the link here or on the banner at the top of the page to fill out our questionnaire.

What is required of participants and when?

If you agree to take part in this study, meet the screening criteria, and sign the Consent Form:

  1. You will be asked to go to a website and take a short survey.

  2. You will receive a dried blood spot sample collection kit.

  3. You will receive detailed information about how to collect the sample(s), and a link to a video showing each of the steps.

  4. Using this kit, you will prick one finger with a sterile lancet (“needle”) and then collect drops of blood onto a special paper card.

  5. After letting this card dry, you will return your sample to us for analysis.

  6. The number of samples you ultimately take and send to us depends on when you enter the study and how long you choose to participate in the study. We will take dried blood spot samples: before vaccination, one month after vaccination is complete, six months after vaccination is complete, and 12 months after vaccination is complete.

This will end your participation in the study, and researchers will not need to contact you in the future, unless you agree to be contacted for further potential follow-ups.

How can Participants find out their results?

If you would like to know your results (for both your PFAS levels and antibodies), please indicate that on your survey.

More Questions?

Email them to us at:

Why This Study Is So Important

COVID-19 (“coronavirus”) is a new infection that has spread globally within the last two years. As it is a brand-new virus, there are many things we don’t understand about how the human immune system reacts to it. There is also a strong interest in determining how different populations respond to the Covid-19 vaccine in terms of building a lasting immunity to subsequent infections.

Certain environmental pollutants such as Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) can adversely affect the development of the immune system with some evidence on effects on vaccine-induced antibody concentration, e.g. influenza, diphtheria, and tetanus, and increased risk of infections.

It is however unclear whether higher exposure to these substances may impact antibody response to the newly developed Covid-19 vaccines, a high priority public health issue. This will help us ‘fight’ the pandemic and may help design appropriate vaccination strategies for certain vulnerable populations.

Meet The Research Team

Our Community Partners