Dr. Byram Bridle wears a lab coat and stands in a lab.
Dr. Byram Bridle

Dr. Byram Bridle, a professor of immunology with the Department of Pathobiology at U of G’s Ontario Veterinary College, provided a commentary for the Conversation Canada about the potential health effects for children who have remained indoors for most of the last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He argued that kids who have been living largely in sanitized homes may be at greater risk of developing hypersensitivities and autoimmune diseases.

“An unfortunate and under-appreciated long-term legacy of this pandemic will likely be a cluster of ‘pandemic youth’ that grow up to suffer higher-than-average rates of allergies, asthma and autoimmune diseases. This will hold true for children in all countries that enacted isolation policies,” Bridle wrote.

The commentary was re-posted on Business Insider, the National Post, the Philippine Canadian Inquirer and elsewhere. Conversation Canada has also translated the commentary into French.

Bridle studies oncolytic viruses and has received provincial research funding to adapt technology to develop a vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.