Tag Archives: CRISPR

Science Advisory Board | Instant News


Science Advisory Board<br />

COVID-19 has long-term effects on the biotechnology industry

January 5, 2021 – The COVID-19 pandemic will have far-reaching and lasting effects on the biotechnology industry, according to speakers at a January 5 presentation held ahead of the virtual Biotech Showcase being held on January 11-15. Biotech companies have been swirling around on a large scale pursuing infectious disease research – and not all of them will succeed.
Discuss

An allergic reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine should not stop vaccination

January 4, 2021 – The COVID-19 vaccine currently approved for emergency use by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is safe even among people with food or drug allergies, according to allergists from Massachusetts General Hospital. A review of all relevant information is published on Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice on December 31st.
Discuss

Top 10 ScienceBoard stories for 2020

21 December 2020 – For many of us, 2020 didn’t go according to plan. The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed our daily lives. Right here at ScienceBoard.net, we have provided our readers with timely and evidence-based information regarding COVID-19, as well as many other topics in the biopharmaceutical and life sciences industry.
Discuss

The FDA issued the EUA for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine

18 December 2020 – Just one day after the committee’s favorable recommendation, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the COVID-19 messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine from Moderna. The company’s mRNA-1273 vaccine is now the second COVID-19 vaccine on the US market, after vaccines from Pfizer and BioNTech were administered EUA last week.
Discuss

New discoveries could produce broad-spectrum antivirals

18 December 2020 – Scientists have identified key human genes that cells need to consume and destroy viruses. Research results are published in Natural on December 16 and could demonstrate new treatments to target viral infections, including COVID-19.
Discuss

The FDA committee voted in favor of the Moderna COVID-19 EUA vaccine

17 December 2020 – Moderna’s COVID-19 messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine candidate, mRNA-1273, received favorable recommendations on December 17 from an advisory committee for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The OK Committee means that mRNA-1273 may receive emergency use authorization (EUA) within a few days.
Discuss

The new immunotherapy supports the polio vaccine to treat cancer

17 December 2020 – As if we needed another reason to get vaccinated, researchers have developed technology that uses the polio vaccine to help treat cancer in those who later develop the disease. The technology, developed at Duke University and developed by Istari Oncology, uses the antigen produced by the polio vaccine to trigger the immune system to eat away at targeted cancer cells.
Discuss

The genes provide new targets for COVID-19 therapy

15 December 2020 – Genes associated with antiviral immunity and lung inflammation have been linked to severe cases of COVID-19 in a new genome analysis carried out in the UK. The result, published in Natural on December 11, revealed new therapeutic targets for drug reuse and development efforts.
Discuss

Global health R&D has stalled as resources shifted to COVID-19

December 14, 2020 – The current coronavirus pandemic has slowed progress in research and development (R&D) on neglected diseases and other long-term global health challenges by disrupting ongoing research and directing resources to the work of COVID-19, according to a new report released on December 11. by the nonprofit Global Health Technologies Coalition.
Discuss

The FDA issued the EUA for Pfizer’s vaccine, BioNTech COVID-19

12 December 2020 – The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. This step comes after the FDA’s Vaccines and Biological Products Advisory Committee issued positive recommendations for the vaccine.

Google’s DeepMind is making a quantum leap in solving the problem of protein folding

11 December 2020 – Artificial intelligence has made breakthroughs in protein structure prediction. The results come as part of the 14th Critical Assessment of Structure Prediction, a friendly contest and conference organized by the Protein Structure Prediction Center with sponsorship from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, part of the US National Institutes of Health.
Discuss






.



image source

Science Advisory Board | Instant News


Science Advisory Board<br />

The FDA committee voted in favor of the Moderna COVID-19 EUA vaccine

17 December 2020 – Moderna’s COVID-19 messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine candidate, mRNA-1273, today received favorable recommendations from the advisory committee for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The OK Committee means that mRNA-1273 may receive emergency use authorization (EUA) within a few days.
Discuss

The new immunotherapy supports the polio vaccine to treat cancer

17 December 2020 – As if we needed another reason to get vaccinated, researchers have developed technology that uses the polio vaccine to help treat cancer in those who later develop the disease. The technology, developed at Duke University and developed by Istari Oncology, uses the antigen produced by the polio vaccine to trigger the immune system to eat away at targeted cancer cells.
Discuss

The genes provide new targets for COVID-19 therapy

15 December 2020 – Genes linked to antiviral immunity and lung inflammation have been linked to severe cases of COVID-19 in a new genome analysis carried out in the UK. The result, published in Natural on December 11, revealed new therapeutic targets for drug reuse and development efforts.
Discuss

Global health R&D has stalled as resources shifted to COVID-19

December 14, 2020 – The current coronavirus pandemic has slowed progress in research and development (R&D) on neglected diseases and other long-term global health challenges by disrupting ongoing research and directing resources to the work of COVID-19, according to a new report released on December 11. by the nonprofit Global Health Technologies Coalition.
Discuss

The FDA issued the EUA for Pfizer’s vaccine, BioNTech COVID-19

12 December 2020 – The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. This step comes after the FDA’s Vaccines and Biological Products Advisory Committee issued positive recommendations for the vaccine.

Google’s DeepMind is making a quantum leap in solving the problem of protein folding

11 December 2020 – Artificial intelligence has made breakthroughs in protein structure prediction. The results come as part of the 14th Critical Assessment of Structure Prediction, a friendly contest and conference organized by the Protein Structure Prediction Center with sponsorship from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, part of the US National Institutes of Health.
Discuss

The FDA committee approved the transfer of Pfizer, the BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to EUA

December 10, 2020 – Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate, BNT162b2, passed an important milestone today when the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee determined that the candidate’s benefits in preventing COVID-19 outweigh the risks. The committee’s advice is likely to lead to the issuance of an emergency use authorization (EUA) for vaccines by the FDA within days.
Discuss

The new study found the SARS-CoV-2 antibodies disappeared rapidly

8 December 2020 – Antibodies developed after being infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus disappeared rapidly, according to an analysis published in Immunology Science on December 7th. These findings may suggest that SARS-CoV-2 infection may not offer long-term immunity from subsequent reinfection with the virus.
Discuss

The new universal flu vaccine targets conserved areas of viral surface proteins

December 7, 2020 – A new universal influenza vaccine has been developed that targets the surface protein stem of the influenza virus rather than the head. This vaccine, which is capable of neutralizing various strains of influenza, was evaluated in a phase I clinical study whose results were published in Natural Medicine on December 7th.
Discuss

Regulatory Roundup: The appointment is made before the end of the year

December 7, 2020 – This week’s Regulatory Roundup covers activities from November 30 to December 4 and is filled with breakthroughs, orphans, and rare disease appointments from the US Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency. Several cancer, immunotherapy, and vaccine companies also submitted biological licensing applications to advance their candidates.
Discuss






.



image source

Scientists are beginning to better understand how space travel affects the body | Instant News



Space travel has been one of the greatest achievements of the last century. Indeed, putting humans in space took a lot of time, effort, dedication, and planning. However, there is still a lot to learn. Recently, scientists have gained a better understanding of how space travel specifically affects the body at the molecular level, providing insight into the potential long-term effects it will have on an individual’s health. According to a recent NASA statement, scientists are now starting to understand that “a possible underlying factor of these impacts [is] the powerhouse of the cell, called the mitochondria, [which] undergoes changes in activity during space flights. This full view of the International Space Station was photographed from Space Shuttle Discovery … [+] during the STS-114 return flight mission, following the undocking of the two spacecraft. getty The statement says this preliminary belief stems from decades of research conducted on the International Space Station and samples from around 59 astronauts. The findings are based on a larger compendium of research by several principal investigators, studies and scientific efforts that take a closer look at how space affects human health. Afshin Beheshti, who is one of the key scientists, says, “We have found a universal mechanism that explains the types of changes we are seeing in the body in space, and in a place that we did not expect. […] Everything is turned upside down and it all starts with the mitochondria. Beheshti continues: “When we started to compare the tissues of mice transported on separate space missions, we noticed that mitochondrial dysfunction continued to emerge. […] Whether we were looking at eye or liver problems, the same mitochondrial pathways were causing the problem. CAP CANAVERAL, FL – NOVEMBER 15: NASA astronauts, vehicle pilot Victor Glover (front L), commander … [+] Mike Hopkins (front R), mission specialist Shannon Walker (rear L) and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) mission specialist, astronaut Soichi Noguchi (rear R) exit the operations building and aircraft en route to the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with the Crew Dragon spacecraft on Launch Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center November 15, 2020 in Cape Canaveral, Florida. This will mark the second astronaut launch from American soil by NASA and SpaceX and the first operational mission named Crew-1 to the International Space Station. (Photo by Red Huber / Getty Images) Getty Images The press release further states that “NASA data on humans has confirmed this hypothesis. The changes identified in the immune system of astronaut Scott Kelly during his year in space from 2015 can also be explained by the changes observed in the activity of his mitochondria. Blood and urine samples from dozens of other astronauts have shown additional evidence that in various cell types being in space results in altered mitochondrial activity. Evagelia C. Laiakis, PhD, associate professor of oncology at Georgetown said that “although we have each studied different tissues, we have all come to the same conclusion: that mitochondrial function has been adversely affected by travel in l ‘space.” Regardless, the disease related to mitochondrial dysfunction is a broad area of ​​study, which has some level of understanding in both physiological and pathological contexts. So, Beheshti states that perhaps “We can look at the countermeasures and drugs that we are already using to treat mitochondrial disorders on Earth to see how they might work in space, to begin with. Indeed, this crucial finding reaffirms that more research needs to be done in this area to continue examining the short and long term health effects of space travel on humans. Only then can humanity truly unlock and explore the full potential that space has to offer. .



image source

The newly identified enzyme provides a new tool for genome editing CRISPR, can tools | Instant News


Hypercompact recently discovered CRISPR enzyme is found only in huge bacteriophages, known as CRISPR-CasΦ, functional, a new study by Patrick Posch, Jennifer Doudna and colleagues reports, and it provides a powerful new tool in CRISPR genome editing elements, including because it can attract a wider range of genetic sequences compared to Cas9 to Cas12 and.

The authors tested their goal is to empower people and plant cells. Given their small size, they also suggest CasΦ can offer new advantages for cell delivery compared with other CRISPR-Cas and proteins.

While widely known as a tool for genetic engineering in nature, the CRISPR-CAS systems provide a single-celled organisms with adaptive immunity against viruses and plasmids.

CRISPR RNA (crRNA) in the host recognizes DNA in a previously encountered viruses and direct the CRISPR-associated or CAS enzymes to destroy viruses.

Although CRISPR-CAS systems almost exclusively to exist and operate in the genomes of bacteria and archaea, they also recently opened a huge bacteriophages – viruses of bacteria. However, these systems are different.

They, in particular, lack of protein CAS is often found in other CRISPR-CAS systems, but only to Harbor genetically unique and extremely tiny CasΦ of the enzyme.

Here, Posh, Doudna and colleagues describe the functionality of the phage-derived CRISPR-CasΦ system and demonstrate its potential to enhance CRISPR genome editing elements.

Despite the fact that almost half the size of Cas9 to Cas12 and systems normally used to edit the genome, Posch et al. to show that biochemically unique CasΦ fully functional and able to produce the Mature crRNA and cleaving foreign DNA, using only one active center, making it the most compact CRISPR-CAS system has not yet been determined.

Moreover, the authors demonstrate the ability CasΦ can be successfully used in both human and change the plant genome.

.



image source

CRISPR can help in kidney transplantation by detecting viruses | Instant News


An interesting new study was published in the journal Natural Biomedical Engineering in April 2020 reported excellent results with new tests for two common viruses that infect kidney transplant patients. The level of this virus increases during the acute phase of rejection.

Why is immunosuppressive needed?

Kidney transplantation is a life-saving but complicated procedure. There are many points where it can fail. Of all these, the most feared complication after successful surgery is organ rejection – when the patient’s body rejects a new kidney as a foreign object. The immune system starts producing antibodies to try and kill new kidneys. This not only removes the valuable donor kidney but can cause patient death.

To prevent this, doctors usually prescribe drugs that reduce the strength of the immune response, called immunosuppressive. This reduces the chance of rejection. But there is a downside.

Problems with immunosuppressive drugs

The disadvantage of such drugs is to disarm the system that allows us to function normally even when exposed to millions of bacteria, viruses, and other germs that, if left unchecked, will enter the body and endanger or even kill organisms. What makes them avoid is the immune system – the body’s natural defenses that are tuned. Sometimes it fails, such as when the body is exposed to new and unknown threats (such as COVID-19), or is taxed beyond its strength. With the immune system no longer operating at full power, the bridge pulls down – we are far more vulnerable to external threats. This is why doctors who carry out transplants have to follow a fine line between too little silencer (resulting in organ rejection), and too much (which allows infection to persist in the body). In addition, infections that occur in immunocompromised patients are just ordinary infections, which in healthy people can be easily removed.

Doctors must monitor their patients very carefully to ensure that the drugs are at the right concentration to prevent any of these things from happening. Monitoring like this is usually done through kidney biopsy and blood tests – expensive, invasive, and time consuming.

New way

Urine tests are much simpler and cheaper than blood and kidney tests. And now, scientists have combined this modality with a powerful technology called CRISPR to sense the presence of molecules that indicate infection. CRISPR is more often associated with gene editing. However, current use can produce very sensitive diagnostic tools to detect early signs of rejection, just like the more common urine tests that filter urine sugar, pregnancy hormones, and the like.

3D illustration of the CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing system. Credit Illustration: Meletios Verras / Shutterstock

To adapt the urine test for this purpose, it must be able to detect nucleic acids – DNA or RNA. And this is why CRISPR is so useful because it is able to find small segments of nucleic acid in a specific order if there is a complementary piece of RNA guidance to help it. This is combined with an enzyme called Cas, which occurs in several forms, and makes pieces to isolate the sequence in question. It is also bound to a fluorescent molecule called a reporter, because it lights up when the target sequence is split.

Lateral flow strips showed three samples of patients who were negative for BK virus (13,14,15) and three samples of patients who were positive (16,17,18). The presence of the upper band shows positive test results. Image Credit: Michael Kaminski, MDC

Lateral flow strips showed three samples of patients who were negative for BK virus (13,14,15) and three samples of patients who were positive (16,17,18). The presence of the upper band shows positive test results. Image Credit: Michael Kaminski, MDC

Many researchers have proven that CRISPR can take useful diagnostic information on man-made samples, but clinical testing is rarely done. This involves achieving enough sensitivity to detect very low concentrations, which are usually found in biological samples.

Researcher Michael Kaminski commented: “The challenge is to get down to clinically meaningful concentrations. This really makes a big difference if you aim at a ton of synthetic targets in your test tube, compared to if you want to reach the level of a single molecule in a patient’s fluid. “

How is CRISPR assisted urine testing done?

Urine test kits or tests are carried out in two stages. The first involves amplification of viral DNA from the two most common opportunistic pathogens, namely, cytomegalovirus (CMV) and BK polyomavirus (BKV). This process means making many copies of a small amount of target DNA to get a concentration high enough that it can be detected by CRISPR. Amplification goes as far as is needed to allow detection of even one target molecule. This was achieved by a CRISPR-Cas13 program called SHERLOCK, which adapted the process for use with viral DNA.

The testing kit is a paper strip that acts somewhat like a pregnancy strip at home. Two lines indicate the presence of a virus when the strip is dipped in a sample that has been prepared for testing. If the target sequence exists but at a very small level, a pale second line may appear. To avoid this, they also designed smartphone applications to ensure an impartial strip analysis with results that reflect line intensity.

The steps are repeated this time using the CXCL9 biomarker, which signifies organ rejection. MRNA from the sample was isolated and then amplified before detecting it using CRISPR-Cas13.

The researchers perfected the technique, testing the analysis on more than 100 real-life kidney transplant samples. They found that it responded to very low concentrations of BKV or CMV, both of which were related to acute rejection responses mediated by cellular infiltration.

Embryonic renal culture ex-vivo. Image Credit: Michael Kaminski, MDC

Embryonic renal culture ex-vivo. Image Credit: Michael Kaminski, MDC

What happens next for CRISPR?

The researchers applied for a patent. Kaminski also plans to conduct clinical studies of sufficient size to make a meaningful contribution in the field. This will compare current tests with conventional methods to monitor these patients. Scientists are working on a smoother and less complicated test protocol, without having to heat up the sample before being analyzed.

Such dreams can bring tests to the level of testing at home, where one strip only needs to be tested to get quantitative results from various biomarkers. This will allow changes in each field compared to the baseline for each marker.

The researchers said, “Testing allows – through simple visualization – post-transplant monitoring for common opportunistic viral infections and graft rejection, and should facilitate monitoring at the post-transplant care site. Not only will this test be of benefit to others with a weak immune system, but CRISPR-mediated diagnostic capabilities can also lead to the development of new tests for other types of organ transplants as well. “

Journal reference:

Kaminski, M.M., Alcantar, M.A., Lape, I.T. et al. CRISPR-based test to detect opportunistic infections after transplant and for monitoring transplant rejection. Nat Biomed Eng (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41551-020-0546-5

.



image source