The Trump administration has posted an update to its plan to reopen the U.S. economy, this time with a slightly different twist on testing. This plan not only calls on local governments to administer tests for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, but also calls for two antibody tests per person under some circumstances, an approach that should beef up both the positive and negative predictive values compared to a single antibody test.
Reports of unusually high death rates for COVID-19 patients on ventilators have raised alarms, and some doctors are looking to reduce reliance on the breathing machines when possible. To advance that goal, Lungpacer Medical Inc., of Vancouver, British Columbia, has obtained an emergency use authorization (EUA) from the U.S. FDA for its Lungpacer diaphragmatic pacing therapy system (DPTS) for immediate use in ventilator patients at high risk of weaning failure, including patients with the novel coronavirus.
Ultraviolet (UV) light has a long-standing track record in use as an antimicrobial. But the primary limitation to using UV light in relation to the human body is that it can also potentially damage its cells. A group of researchers at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, Calif., known as the Medically Associated Science and Technology (MAST) team, is now researching safe UV technology for use in COVID-19 treatment.
Armonk, N.Y.-based International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) launched the Rapid Supplier Connect network to help government agencies and health care organizations tap into new, non-traditional suppliers now producing devices and equipment needed to battle COVID-19. Membership in the blockchain-based network is free through Aug. 31, 2020, to qualified participants.
LONDON – Leading genome sequencing groups are launching the first meta-analysis in the hunt for genetic factors that explain why some people have worse COVID-19 symptoms than others, after agreeing to share patient sequence data from around the world. The COVID-19 Host Genetics Initiative (CHGI), set up by scientists at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), now includes 151 registered studies that are searching for genetic variation associated with severity and outcomes.
Regulatory snapshots, including global submissions and approvals, clinical trial approvals and other regulatory decisions and designations: Chronolife, Edwards Lifesciences, Exthera, Icecure, Life Spine, Lungpacer Medical, Medipines.
Med-tech happenings, including deals and partnerships, grants, preclinical data and other news in brief: Acamp, Coala Life, Emtensor, Illumina, Invivoscribe, Labshares Newton, Meridian Bioscience, Pensees, O-Two Medical Technologies, QuantalRF, Quest Diagnostics, Seastar Medical, Seqll, Stryker, Wright Medical, Sunstar JSC, Synaptive, Wyss Institute.
Keeping you up to date on recent developments in oncology, including: Small tumors and large motion effects dampen treatment effect in IMPT; Pancreatic cancer uses autophagy to hide from immune system; NRF2 wakes sleeping tumor cells; Cancer renders patients more susceptible to COVID-19.
Respiratory complications caused by COVID-19 can propel a patient from a mild cough one day to a ventilator and an ICU only 10 days later. As countries around the world work to stockpile ventilators and citizens continue social distancing measures, biopharma companies are tackling the development of fast-acting therapeutics to disrupt a dire disease trajectory in hospitalized patients. An industry-wide frantic race has ensued. On March 5, BioWorld reported that there were approximately 30 therapeutics and vaccines in development for COVID-19. As of April 28, there were 343 total: 249 therapeutics and 94 vaccines.
Regulatory snapshots, including global drug submissions and approvals, clinical trial approvals and other regulatory decisions and designations: Adaptimmune, Bioeclipse, Moderna, Moleculin, Pharmamar, Retrotope, Roche, Sanofi, Shionogi, Zambon.