Tag Archives: treatment

The UK will start a HEAL-COVID trial to reduce the death rate, the re-entry rate among Covid survivors | Instant News

The UK will initiate trials of a drug called HEAL-COVID in a bid to reduce death and re-entry rates in patients previously hospitalized with the new coronavirus.

According to the Clinical Trials Arena report, data compiled by the UK’s Office for National Statistics shows that 29 percent of hospitalized Covid-19 patients are hospitalized again within six months. Meanwhile, more than 12 percent died during the same period.

So, the new trials will help the government find a drug that can reduce deaths and hospital admissions for Covid-19 survivors.

The study was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research Center. The trial will be led by the Cambridge University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Cambridge University.

This will be done in collaboration with the Liverpool Clinical Trials Center at the University of Liverpool and the Wrexham-based clinical trial technology firm Aparito.

HEAL-COVID (short for Help Reduce the Long-Term Consequences of Covid-19) will test safe drug options already on the market in patients across the UK to find effective treatments, according to an official release.

“After surviving the trauma of being hospitalized with Covid-19, too many patients returned to hospital with new or long-term complications,” said study leader from the University of Cambridge and Addenbrooke Hospital, Dr. Charlotte Summers.

“Unfortunately, many died within a few months of being discharged. This trial is the first of its kind to see what drugs we can use to reduce harm to patients. “

HEAL-COVID will check for people who have just been discharged from the hospital, after being admitted for the first time for Covid-19.


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The Novavax trial sheds light on a COVID-fighting complex in Maryland | Instant News

When Novavax Inc. received $ 1.6 billion last year from the federal government to speed up testing and production of a coronavirus vaccine, some observers do not believe. The small biotech company, based in Gaithersburg, Maryland, was largely unknown and never managed to bring a product to market.

But now that the company is close to completing its Phase 3 trials for the COVID-19 vaccine, which was found to be nearly 90% effective during clinical trials in the UK, the company is making headlines around the world.

Novavax’s newfound fame not only sheds light on its own unique story, but also – more broadly – on Maryland’s burgeoning biohealth industry. About 40 companies in Maryland are playing some role in the coronavirus response, whether by producing vaccines, medications, therapies, diagnostic tests or supplying research, according to Martin Rosendale, chief executive of the Maryland Tech Council, a trade association that supports technology and life science companies.

When the pandemic first emerged, the Maryland Tech Council created the so-called “Maryland COVID Coalition” which brought together dozens of companies from across the state that were working on, or were starting to work on, coronavirus-related products. The group meets monthly to share research and resources. “We recognize how serious it is and the response is going to happen here in Maryland,” said Rosendale. “Everyone comes together, everyone realizes that we need to work together,” he said.

One of the leading companies is Emergent BioSolutions Inc., also headquartered in Gaithersburg, founded 22 years ago and best known for supplying large quantities of anthrax vaccine to the US government’s emergency medical reserves, which are stored in the event of a terrorist attack. Emergent not only produces its own vaccines and pharmaceuticals, it also contracts its manufacturing capabilities to other companies and the federal government.

In the past year, the company has secured nine contracts to produce coronavirus-related products for the company, including producing all or part of vaccines for Johnson & Johnson, Novavax and AstraZeneca plc.

The contract with J&J alone requires Emergent to produce 1 billion doses of the COVID vaccine. The US federal government plans this week to purchase an additional 100 million single doses of J&J for Americans, on top of the 100 million doses originally purchased last summer as part of Operation Warp Speed.

Emergent is one of 10 companies worldwide that help produce J&J vaccines, according to the J&J website. While it’s not uncommon for drug companies to contract out some of their manufacturing capabilities, the current onset of the pandemic has prompted vaccine makers to partner with more contractors in a bid to scale rapidly. Earlier this month, the White House announced that Merck, the pharmaceutical giant based in New Jersey, will also help produce the J&J vaccine.

The COVID-19 contract helped boost developing country revenues sharply last year. The company reported revenues of more than $ 1.6 billion for 2020, up 41% from 2019. Its net profit soared to $ 305.1 million, up from $ 54.5 million in 2019.

Each contract has a different scope. Some contracts require Emergent to provide all three stages of drug production, from development to production of substances that go into drugs to finished vaccines. Another contract requires Emergent to provide only one stage of production.

Emergent has four facilities in Maryland, and about 1,000 of its total workforce of 2,400 are employed in the state. The Gaithersburg facility handles the development work and the Bayview (Baltimore) facility does work on substances. Manufacturing plants in Rockville and Camden Yards are for “fill and finish” where product is bottled, labeled and placed in a box for shipment.

Syed Husain, who heads Emergent’s contract development and manufacturing division, said the company’s Baltimore and Rockville plants are capable of producing four different vaccines at the same time but in separate sequences. “Think of it as four plants in one plant,” he said. “Everything is separated. So we’re working on one product (and) that’s the only thing that could be in the suite. But given the fact that it is multiproduct capable, you can work on one product, then you can change and then work on another product. “

Husain said production had increased since October 2020, with the factory operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week. “We produce medicinal substances to support hundreds of millions of doses every month and more than one billion doses annually,” he said.

Meanwhile, Emergent is developing its own products, including two plasma-based therapies that could be potential treatments for coronavirus inpatients. The company announced in October that one of the therapies was entering Phase 3 clinical trials.

Other Maryland companies working on COVID-19 products include Altimmune Inc., which works on vaccines and therapies that can be sprayed into the nasal cavity instead of being given by injection in the arm; Qiagen NV, which developed a rapid test that can detect the coronavirus within an hour; Amarex Clinical Research LLC, working on treatments for some of the symptoms of COVID-19; and Vigene Biosciences Inc., which provides viral vector-based gene delivery services and products for research and clinical applications.

Maryland has a high concentration of biohealth companies in part due to its proximity to the National Institutes of Health and Food and Drug Administration as well as research institutions including the University of Maryland.

Richard Bendis, president and chief executive officer of BioHealth Innovation Inc., a non-profit network with companies in Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia, said the region ranks fourth in the country for the number of biohealth companies, after San Francisco, Boston and New. . York.

“You want to be in an area where there are other companies doing similar work,” which makes it easier to “attract some of the leading scientists, researchers and business people,” said Bendis. He noted that GlaxoSmithKline plc, a major British pharmaceutical company, locates its North American headquarters in Maryland in part because of its proximity to the NIH and the many research institutions it can work with. In 2012, Glaxo bought Human Genome Sciences Inc. from Rockville for $ 3.6 billion.

In addition to the human genome business that Glaxo acquired, several other companies in Maryland are conducting research that uses human DNA sequences to develop targeted drugs. Such research is important for vaccine development.


This article was provided to The Associated Press by the University of Maryland’s Capital News Service.


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Brazilian hospitals surrendered in the absence of a national virus plan | Instant News

Over the past week, the Brazilian governor has sought to do something President Jair Bolsonaro has firmly rejected: draft a proposal for states to help curb the country’s deadliest COVID-19 outbreak. The efforts are expected to include curfews, bans on crowded events and limits on the hours non-essential services can operate.

The final product, presented Wednesday, is a one-page document that includes general support for limiting activity but without specific actions. Six governors, apparently still wary of Bolsonaro’s opposition, refused to sign.

State governor Piaui Wellington Dias told The Associated Press that unless the pressure on hospitals eases, more and more patients will have to endure illness without hospital beds or expectations of treatment in intensive care units.

“We have reached the limit all over Brazil; There are rarely exceptions, ”said Dias, who chaired the governor’s forum. “The chance of dying without help is real.”

Death has already started. In Brazil’s richest state, Sao Paulo, at least 30 patients died this month while waiting for ICU beds, according to a tally published Wednesday by news website G1. In the southern state of Santa Catarina, 419 people are waiting to be transferred to ICU beds. In neighboring Rio Grande do Sul, ICU capacity stands at 106%.

Alexandre Zavascki, a doctor in Rio Grande do Sul’s capital, Porto Alegre, described hospital patients who were constantly arriving and having trouble breathing.

“I have many colleagues who, sometimes, stop crying. This is not a drug that we routinely take. It is a drug adapted for war scenarios, ”said Zavascki, who oversees infectious disease treatment at a private hospital. “We see that a large part of the population refuses to see what’s going on, rejects the facts. These people may be admitted to the hospital later and need a bed. But nothing will. “

The state, he added, needed “more rigid action” from the authorities.

Over the president’s objection, the Supreme Court last year upheld city and state jurisdiction to impose restrictions on activity. Even so, Bolsonaro has consistently condemned such a move, saying the economy must continue to spin and that isolation would lead to depression.

The latest spike was driven by the P1 variant, which Brazil’s health minister said last month was three times more contagious than the original strain. It first became dominant in the Amazon city of Manaus and in January forced the transport of hundreds of patients to other states.

Brazil’s failure to contain the spread of the virus since then is increasingly a concern not only for Latin America’s neighbors, but also as a warning to the world, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director of the World Health Organization, told a March 5 press conference.

“Across the country, aggressive use of public health measures, social measures, will be very, very important,” he said. “Without doing things to influence transmission or suppress the virus, I don’t think we will be able in Brazil to experience a downward trend.”

Last week’s tally of more than 10,000 deaths was Brazil’s highest since the pandemic began, and this week is on a worse track after the country posted nearly 2,300 deaths on Wednesday – wiping out the previous day’s total which was also a record.

Brazil has decades of experience with mass immunization campaigns, but their rollout was hampered by delays, many of which were self-defeating; 5.5% of the population has been vaccinated.

“The governors, like many other residents, are fed up with all this inaction,” said Margareth Dalcolmo, a leading pulmonologist at the state-run Fiocruz Institute. He added that the pact they are proposing is vague and will remain symbolic unless it becomes distant and confronts the federal government.

Brazil’s national council of state health secretaries last week called for the establishment of a national curfew and lockdowns in areas close to maximum hospital capacity. Bolsonaro objected again.

“I’m not going to decide,” Bolsonaro said Monday at an event. “And you can be sure of one thing: My soldiers are not going to take to the streets to force people to stay at home.”

Restrictions can already be found outside the presidential palace after the Governor of the Federal District, Ibaneis Rocha, imposed a curfew and partial lockdowns. Rocha warned Tuesday that he could press harder, excluding only pharmacies and hospitals, if people continue to ignore regulations. Currently, 213 people in the district are on the waiting list for ICU beds.

Bolsonaro told reporters Monday that the curfew was “insulting, unacceptable,” and even the WHO believed the lockdowns were inadequate because they disproportionately hurt the poor. While the WHO acknowledges the “profound negative effects”, it says some countries have no choice but to impose crackdowns to slow transmission, and that governments should take advantage of the extra time provided to test and trace cases, while treating patients.

That nuance is missing at Bolsonaro. His government continues to look for a silver bullet solution which has so far only fueled false hopes. Every idea seems to need consideration, except from public health experts.

The Bolsonaro government spent millions of dollars producing and distributing malaria pills, which did not show any benefit in careful research. Still, Bolsonaro supports the drug. He also supported treatment with two drugs to fight parasites, neither of which showed effectiveness. He again praised their capacity to prevent hospitalization during Wednesday’s events at the presidential palace.

Bolsonaro also sent a committee to Israel this week to assess unproven nasal sprays which he called a “miracle product”. Fiocruz’s Dalcolmo, whose younger sister is currently in ICU, called the trip “very sad”.

Meanwhile, the city of Araraquara, in the interior of Sao Paulo, saw a drop in new cases for weeks after announcing a lockdown amid a crippling surge dominated by the P1 variant. Mayor Edinho Silva told AP in a message that, without mass vaccination, there was no alternative.

Camila Romano, a researcher at the University of Sao Paulo’s Institute of Tropical Medicine, hopes the tests her lab is developing to identify variants of concern, including P1, will help monitor and control its spread. He also wanted to see stricter government measures, and citizens doing their part.

“Every day there are new surprises, new variants, cities where the health system collapses,” said Romano. “We are now in the worst phase. Whether this will be the worst phase of all, unfortunately we don’t know what’s coming. “

——— Álvares reported from Brasilia. Associated Press video journalist Tatiana Pollastri contributing from Sao Paulo.


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VET VOICE: We must count our blessings for a safe food supply | Land & Animal Husbandry Post | Instant News

This winter I was fortunate to be securing a weekend retreat by renting a deer. As I was sitting observing nature, a thought came to my mind: How lucky are we to have a safe food supply? I can easily drive to the grocery store and pick my preferred meat and fixin. I have reasonable assurance that the animals are healthy and of good quality.

Food animals are raised by producers who now, for the most part, specialize in that species. Indeed, there are still some smaller and more diverse producers, but their products also benefit from studies on raising cattle, raising pigs and producing chickens. Progress has been made in our livestock practices to efficiently produce healthy protein.

Manufacturers are bound by quality assurance programs and principles to provide the best care for animals with the knowledge that they will provide nutrition for others. Medications administered to prevent or treat disease are tracked, and assurance is made that drug residues do not end up in the meat we eat. Research is continuing to find better ways to control disease, and some of that information is being translated into improving our health care.

The welfare of food-producing animals is very important. Food and water are readily available not only because it helps the animals grow, but is also good for their well-being. They don’t have to forage like our wildlife species. The methods used to handle animals are focused on becoming more stress free. It is known that if the cattle are comfortable, they do better and everyone is still safer. In the management of various species of forage animals, we have been able to provide an environment that enhances their comfort, keeps them safe from predators and helps control the spread of disease.


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Covid 19 coronavirus: COVID-19 patients died in hospital, two new cases in managed isolation | Instant News

The Health Ministry has revealed that a person who previously tested positive for Covid-19 had died after being hospitalized for treatment for a “serious condition not related to Covid-19”.

There are two new cases of Covid-19 in managed isolation and there are no new cases in society at this time.

The ministry said in its daily 1pm update that it was “deeply saddened to confirm” the death of a patient with Covid-19 at North Shore Hospital.

The statement added: “The patient was transferred from a Managed Isolation Facility to hospital-level care for the treatment of serious conditions unrelated to Covid-19 on February 5.

“This person then returned a positive COVID-19 result after entering. This positive result has been reported before.

“Patients talk to families every day, either by zoom or telephone.”

Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said: “On behalf of New Zealanders, I want to acknowledge the loss of this family.

“This is a time for all of us to give deep sympathy, while respecting the privacy of our family.”

Meanwhile, the Ministry said the new confirmed cases were linked to a person who traveled from India, via the United Arab Emirates, on February 9.

The number of confirmed cases in the country is 1972. The total number of tests processed by the laboratory to date is 1,583,469.

As of Friday, the lab processed 4,683 tests.

Of Friday’s cases in managed isolation cases, one arrived on January 26 from the UK and traveled via Singapore. They tested positive around day 16.

Yesterday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern revealed that New Zealand’s frontline border workers will start receiving the first Covid-19 vaccinations from next Saturday.

Starting February 20, border workers and MIQ in Auckland will be offered the Pfizer / BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.

Speaking to media in Auckland this morning, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said it would take about two to three weeks for 12,000 frontline workers to receive the injections.

After the launch is complete, their family members will be offered vaccinations.

“Health and care workers and those most at risk of Covid-19 will follow in the second quarter, before vaccination of the wider population in the second half of this year,” Ardern said.

He added that the full vaccination program would take a whole year to roll out as a whole.

“This will be New Zealand’s largest vaccination campaign.”

Today is the first time the Government has set any timetable for vaccine launches.

The only new Covid case yesterday arrived on February 8 from the US. Infections were retrieved as a result of day 0 testing.

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