Association between vaccination status and reported incidence of post-acute long-COVID-19 symptoms in Israel: double dose Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination may have a protective effect.

An emerging and complex health problem that remains poorly characterized and understood is long coronavirus disease 2019 (Long COVID). The rapid outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is responsible for the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Long COVID is a post-infection condition in which individuals do not recover completely for

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Viral dynamics and duration of PCR positivity of the SARSCoV-2 Omicron variant: a study of Harvard University researchers on NBA players

A significant proportion of people infected with the omicron variant of coronavirus were still contagious when they reach the U.S. Centers for Disease Control’s recommended self-isolation exit date of five days, according to a  Harvard University study of a small number of cases from the National Basketball Association’s Covid-19 testing program. KEY FACTS Among omicron cases identified 

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COVID-19 nonhospitalized patients: therapeutic options review in Omicron era

Substantial progress has been made in therapeutics for nonhospitalized patients with COVID-19, but supply of and access to treatment remain limited. This Viewpoint summarizes currently available therapeutics for nonhospitalized patients in the setting of the Omicron variant including principles for equitable allocation. Patients with mild or moderate COVID-19 are those who have respiratory and systemic

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NIH researchers develop first stem cell model of albinism to study related eye conditions

A human induced pluripotent stem cell colony from OCA1A patient. The image was acquired using a confocal microscope and is stained for pluripotency marker proteins. The red color depicts transcription factor OCT4, green is SSEA4 protein and blue represents the nucleus of the cells.NEI “Animals used to study albinism are less than ideal because they

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CAR-T-cell therapy has the potential to replace chemoimmunotherapy for second-line treatment of patients with refractory or relapsed large B-cell lymphoma (LBCL)

In the ZUMA-7 trial, at a median follow-up of 24.9 months, patients randomly assigned to receive CAR T-cell therapy with axicabtagene ciloleucel, or axi-cell (Yescarta) had a median event-free survival (EFS) of 8.3 months, compared with 2 months for patients randomly assigned to standard-of-care chemoimmunotherapy, reported Frederick L. Locke, MD, from the Moffitt Cancer Center

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Illinois College University researchers uncover new information about cellular death process, previously thought to be irreversible

A study published by researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago describes a new method for analyzing pyroptosis — the process of cell death that is usually caused by infections and results in excess inflammation in the body — and shows that process, long thought to be irreversible once initiated, can in fact be halted

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A Japan National Institute of Infectious Diseases Control and Prevention Center study shows that Peak Infectiousness Of Omicron variant is 3-6 Days After Symptom Onset.

A new study conducted by Japanese researchers has shown that peak viral loads in people infected with omicron occur between 3 to 6 days after the onset of symptoms. The study raises further concerns about the CDC cutting the self-isolating time for people with Covid-19 to 5 days, not 10. The report was published online on January

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Naive T-cell depletion approach results in lower rates of chronic GVHD after transplant

Removing one type of T cell from donor blood used for stem cell grafts could greatly reduce a serious complication called graft-versus-host disease in patients with leukemia, according to a new study. Published today in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, the study reports that only 7% of leukemia patients who received stem cell transplants depleted of

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Single injection of messenger RNA Can Be Used to Make CAR T cells in vivo and to attack fibrosis in heart failure .

Penn study reveals an easier, more scalable way to make a powerful immunotherapy An experimental immunotherapy can temporarily reprogram patients’ immune cells to attack a specific target via only a single injection of messenger RNA (mRNA), similar to the mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines, according to a new study from researchers in the Perelman School of Medicine

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National Strategy for the new normal life with Covid-19: three papers published on JAMA

Today, a group of eminent physicians and scientists with global standing have acted decisively and in unison presenting the world with what it badly needs, whether it knows it or not: a comprehensive, cohesive plan which lays out the steps to reverse the course of Covid-19. Presented today as three linked “Viewpoints” in one of the world’s

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Predicting the future of COVID: Boston College biologists develop a computational model to detect emerging Coronavirus strains

Efforts to contain the spread of SARS-CoV-2 may benefit from a new analytical tool developed by a team led by biologists at Boston College, who report their computer simulation of molecular interactions can predict mutations of the virus and help develop insights into future variants of concern before they emerge. “We computationally predict what mutations

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A study of Infectious Economics in New York identifies discordant SARS-CoV-2 PCR and Rapid Antigen Test Results When Infectious

Anew study raises significant doubts about whether at-home rapid antigen tests can detect the Omicron variant before infected people can transmit the virus to others. The study looks at 30 people from settings including Broadway theaters and offices in New York and San Francisco where some workers were not only being tested daily but were, because

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Need for long-term monitoring of children born during the COVID-19 pandemic: a study shows differences in neurodevelopment at age 6 months.

A new paper published on JAMA Pediatrics by researchers of Columbia University Irving Medical Center analyses a ssociations between in utero exposure to maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection and neurodevelopment which are speculated, but currently unknown. To examine the associations between maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection during pregnancy, being born during the COVID-19 pandemic regardless of maternal SARS-CoV-2 status,

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Study: COVID-19 Hospitalization Costs, Outcomes In 2020 Improved Over Time

The first comprehensive analysis of its kind examines hospital inpatient costs and length of stay. A new study published in Advances in Therapy provides the first comprehensive analysis of the hospitalization costs for COVID-19 patients, factors associated with costs and length of stay, and the monthly trends of costs and length of stay from April to December

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South-Africa Netcare sees ‘significantly fewer’ Omicron patients with existing illnesses at its hospitals

In South Africa, the pattern of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 early in the fourth wave showed fewer hospitalizations and reduced severity of illness compared with earlier waves, according to a research letter published online Dec. 30 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Caroline Maslo, M.D., Ph.D., from Netcare Ltd. South Africa in Johannesburg, and

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COVID-19 patients have severely increased levels of oxidative stress and oxidant damage, and glutathione deficiency

Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine have investigated the effect of infection with COVID-19 on the levels of oxidative stress, oxidant damage and glutathione, the most abundant physiological antioxidant. Compared to healthy age-matched individuals whose samples were taken before the pandemic started in 2019, patients hospitalized with COVID-19 had significantly increased levels of oxidative stress and

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Lymphoma Cell Metabolism May Provide New Cancer Target

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Photograph by CoRus13, distributed under a CC BY-SA 4.0 license Aggressive and relatively common lymphomas called diffuse large B cell lymphomas (DLBCLs) have a critical metabolic vulnerability that can be exploited to trick these cancers into starving themselves, according to a study from researchers at Weill Cornell Medicine and Cornell’s Ithaca campus.

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Emergence in Southern France of a new SARS-CoV-2 variant named B.1.640.2 of probably Cameroonian origin harbouring both substitutions N501Y and E484K in the spike protein and present in 67 hospitalised patients

A new coronavirus variant has been discovered in southern France, spreading in a small outbreak, according to a new study.The variant, tentatively identified B.1.640.2 according to a recent study backed by the French government that has yet to be peer-reviewed, is believed to be Cameroonian in origin and have so far spread to 67 patients in southern France.

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A potential at-home COVID-19 test is just as good as laboratory PCR tests, according to preclinical data

Researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago have designed a high-quality assay that can be used in at-home tests for rapid COVID-19 screening. Results from an early preclinical study suggest that tests with the new assay may be just as reliable as the laboratory-based molecular tests — called PCR tests — used by hospitals for clinical diagnostics.  “Having fast and

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Sloan Kettering Institute Scientists Retool CAR T Cells to Serve as ‘Micropharmacies’ for Cancer Drugs

Immunotherapies called chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells use genetically engineered versions of a patient’s own immune cells to fight cancer. These treatments have energized cancer care, especially for people with certain types of blood cancers. Now, scientists at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s Sloan Kettering Institute (SKI) have developed new CAR T cells that can do something their

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Complement activation induces excessive T cell cytotoxicity in severe COVID-19, associated with fatal outcome.

A new paper published in Cell by Charitè group opens new perspectives to complement role in Covid-19 Highlights •Severe COVID-19 is marked by activated, highly cytotoxic CD16+ T cells •Immune complex-mediated degranulation of CD16+ T cells causes endothelial cell injury •C3a-rich environment in severe COVID-19 promotes differentiation of CD16+ T cells •Activated CD16+ T cells and complement proteins are

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Analysis of COVID-19 Vaccine Type and Adverse Effects Following Covid-19 Vaccination

This article was originally published here JAMA Netw Open. 2021 Dec 1;4(12):e2140364. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.40364. ABSTRACT IMPORTANCE: Little is known about the factors associated with COVID-19 vaccine adverse effects in a real-world population. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate factors potentially associated with participant-reported adverse effects after COVID-19 vaccination. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: The COVID-19 Citizen Science Study, an online

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Targeting the fibrin-neutrophil interaction prevented bone loss from periodontal disease

Human and animal study offers insight into treating periodontal disease and other inflammatory disorders. Blocking function of a blood-clotting protein prevented bone loss from periodontal (gum) disease in mice, according to research led by scientists at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), part of the National Institutes of Health. Drawing on animal

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When and how to use the existing tests to detect SARS-CoV-2 virus

“Test, test, test.” This is how Tedros Adhanom , director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), urged the countries  at the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic. Testing, isolation and contact tracing should be – and have been in many cases – the “backbone of the global response” to the crisis, according to the head of the agency. According to experts,

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The Omicron variant is highly resistant against antibody-mediated neutralization: a new study on Cell shows

The rapid spread of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant suggests that the virus might become globally dominant. Further, the high number of mutations in the viral spike-protein raised concerns that the virus might evade antibodies induced by infection or vaccination. In thi paper on Cell are reported that the Omicron spike was resistant against most therapeutic

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A NIH researchers study shows SARS-CoV-2 can persist in the body as long as 230 days

In what they describe as the most comprehensive analysis to date of the SARS-CoV-2 virus’s distribution and persistence in the body and brain, scientists at the U.S. National Institutes of Health said they found the pathogen is capable of replicating in human cells well beyond the respiratory tract. The results, released online Saturday in a

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Discovery Health, South Africa’s largest private health insurance administrator, releases at-scale, real-world analysis of Omicron outbreak based on 211 000 COVID-19 test results in South Africa.

Summary: Vaccine effectiveness: o The two-dose Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination provides 70% protection against severe complications of COVID-19 requiring hospitalisation, and 33% protection against COVID-19 infection, during the current Omicron wave. Reinfection risk: For individuals who have had COVID-19 previously, the risk of reinfection with Omicron is significantly higher, relative to prior variants. Severity: The risk of hospital admission

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CAR-HEMATOTOX score: a model for CAR T-cell–related hematologic toxicity in relapsed/refractory large B-cell lymphoma

Immunotherapy with so-called CAR-T cells has established itself for the treatment of various leukemias (blood cancer) and lymphomas (lymph gland cancer). A team led by Dr. Kai Rejeski and Prof. Marion Subklewe from the Medical Clinic III of the LMU Klinikum found that many patients suffer from a side effect that initially fell under the radar: a

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HKUMed researchers find Omicron SARS-CoV-2 can infect faster and better than Delta in human bronchus but with less severe infection in lung

A study led by researchers from the LKS Faculty of Medicine at The University of Hong Kong (HKUMed) provides the first information on how the novel Variant of Concern (VOC) of SARS-CoV-2, the Omicron SARS-CoV-2 infect human respiratory tract. The researchers found that Omicron SARS-CoV-2 infects and multiplies 70 times faster than the Delta variant

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Universal Coronavirus Vaccines: an Urgent Need. Global coronaviral approach requested by Fauci and NIH researchers

A growing body of scientific evidence, considered together with ecological reality, strongly suggest that novel coronaviruses will continue to infect bats and other animal reservoirs and potentially emerge to pose a pandemic threat to humans. To counter future coronavirus outbreaks, the global scientific and medical research community should focus a major effort now on three

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Blockade or deletion of IFN-gamma reduces macrophage activation without compromising CAR T function in hematologic malignancies

Blood Cancer Discovery, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, has published a research article demonstrating a novel approach that may reduce a serious adverse effect associated with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy, a form of immunotherapy. This research was presented at the American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia

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Fostering experimental and computational synergy to modulate hyperinflammation in severe Covid-19

An international collaboration between researchers from the Center for Cooperative Research in Biosciences (CIC bioGUNE, Bilbao), the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) at the University of Luxembourgand and the Department of Immunology of St Jude Children’s Research Hospital (Kanneganti Lab, Memphis) highlights how fostering synergies between computational and experimental studies can lead to important

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Dual-vector gene therapy restores cochlear amplification and auditory sensitivity in a mouse model of DFNB16 hearing loss

Scientists at Boston Children’s Hospital have successfully used gene therapy to reverse a form of genetic hearing loss in mice. The team corrected a gene mutation that affects sensory hair cells in the inner ear, and the new jigsaw-like method could help improve gene therapy for other disorders. The target of the new treatment was

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Risks of myocarditis, pericarditis, and cardiac arrhythmias are more likely associated with Covid-19 infection than with vaccination

Led by the University of Oxford, a team of UK-based researchers have today reported results of the largest ever study to compare the risks of cardiovascular events, such as myocarditis, pericarditis, and cardiac arrhythmia, between different vaccines and COVID-19 infection, and the first to investigate the association between cardiac events and the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. While

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NIH National Eye Institute researchers identify potential AMD drugs with stem-cell based research tool

Model replicates features of complex disease and provides platform for screening existing drugs Using a stem-cell-derived model, researchers have identified two drug candidates that may slow dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness for which no treatment exists. The scientists, from the National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of

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FDA issued an EUA for New Long-Acting Monoclonal Antibodies for Pre-exposure Prevention of COVID-19 in patients with moderate to severely compromised immune systems or a history of severe adverse reactions to a COVID-19 vaccine

Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for AstraZeneca’s Evusheld (tixagevimab co-packaged with cilgavimab and administered together) for the pre-exposure prophylaxis (prevention) of COVID-19 in certain adults and pediatric individuals (12 years of age and older weighing at least 40 kilograms [about 88 pounds]).  The product is only authorized

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A new brief of Health System Tracker examines how deaths from COVID-19 rank among other leading causes of death in the U.S. and vaccine saving of 163.000 deaths since June 2021.

This brief examines how deaths from COVID-19 rank among other leading causes of death in the U.S. We find that COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in November 2021. We also find that in October, COVID-19 was the number 1 cause of death for people age 45-54 and in the top 7 leading

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Potentially Serious Side Effect Seen in Patient after CAR-T cell treatment for multiple myeloma

Mount Sinai scientists have become the first to report a potentially serious side effect related to a new form of immunotherapy known as CAR-T cell therapy, which was recently approved for the treatment of multiple myeloma. Their findings were published as a case study in Nature Medicine in December. Multiple myeloma is a complex and incurable type

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Israel study shows that booster receivers at least 5 months after a second dose of BNT162b2 had 90% lower mortality due to Covid-19.

Booster doses of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine set recipients up to effectively withstand the ravages of both the Delta and Omicron variants, a group of new studies suggest. Boosted folks are 90% less likely to die from a Delta infection than people relying solely on the initial two-dose vaccination, Israeli data show. That protection will be critically important

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New Technology published by Caltech researchers is One Step Closer to Targeted Gene Therapy

Broad and robust transgene expression across brain regions of marmoset is shown after systemic delivery with engineered capsid. Gene therapy is a powerful developing technology that has the potential to address myriad diseases. For example, Huntington’s disease, a neurodegenerative disorder, is caused by a mutation in a single gene, and if researchers could go into

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Scientists have discovered that gene therapy and the diabetes drug metformin may be potential treatments for late-onset retinal degeneration (L-ORD), a rare, blinding eye disease.

Clinical trial planning underway to test the widely used diabetes drug metformin as a preventive treatment for the blinding eye disease Scientists have discovered that gene therapy and the diabetes drug metformin may be potential treatments for late-onset retinal degeneration (L-ORD), a rare, blinding eye disease. Researchers from the National Eye Institute (NEI), part of

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3 Teens with COVID-19 Developed Sudden Severe Psychiatric Symptoms. Why?

UCSF-Led Study Shows Unruly Immune System May Trigger ‘Turncoat’ Antibodies Suicidal thoughts, “paranoia-like fears,” delusions and “foggy brain” have been identified in three adolescents who had mild or asymptomatic COVID-19. Now, a new study into their immune responses identifies a potential mechanism by which these symptoms emerged. The study, led by researchers at the UCSF Weill

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Early Features on South Africa Tshwane District Omicron Variant Patient Profile: absence of any significant increase in in-hospitals deaths in relation to the dramatic rise in the case rate.

There has been a significant rise in new SARS-CoV-2 infections in the Gauteng Province in the last four weeks which has been attributed to the new Omicron variant announced on 24 November 2021. The first cases of Omicron were detected in the Tshwane District and coincided with the sharp rise in new infections, heralding the

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The first six months of COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Italy averted 29350 deaths and 4256332 new infections: results published in a paper of Greenwich, Boston and Indiana Universities

In a paper published in MedRxiv are analyzed the effectiveness of the first six months of vaccination campaign against SARS-CoV-2 in Italy by using a computational epidemic model which takes into account demographic, mobility, vaccines, as well as estimates of the introduction and spreading of the more transmissible Alpha variant. Are considered six sub-national regions

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Researchers reveal possible role for anti-idiotype antibodies in long-term effects of COVID-19 and some vaccines complications

With around 256 million cases and more than 5 million deaths worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged scientists and those in the medical field. Researchers are working to find effective vaccines and therapies, as well as understand the long-term effects of the infection. While the vaccines have been critical in pandemic control, researchers are still

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High-titre convalescent plasma therapy not effective against severe COVID-19 pneumonia: results of Italian TSUNAMI randomized clinical trial

1. Amongst patients with severe COVID-19 pneumonia, there was no difference in 30-day all-cause mortality, ventilation or cure in patients receiving convalescent plasma (CP) plus standard therapy versus standard therapy alone. 2. CP treatment was associated with more adverse events, including 5 instances of respiratory failure requiring treatment interruption. Patients who have recovered from SARS-CoV-2

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New study of Karolinska Institute and Helsinki University shows how digital and molecular data can be integrated to prevent ill health

With the development of sensors, apps and other digital alternatives for health monitoring, the individual’s opportunities to work proactively for better health and well-being increase. At the same time, the measurement of many different biomolecular variables (so-called multiomics) enables a deep and comprehensive profiling of human biology. – Instead of focusing on the treatment of the

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A detailed study by Max Planck Institute shows the maximum risks of being infected by SARS-CoV-2 for different scenarios with and without masks

Three metres are not enough to ensure protection. Even at that distance, it takes less than five minutes for an unvaccinated person standing in the breath of a person with Covid-19 to become infected with almost 100 percent certainty. That’s the bad news. The good news is that if both are wearing well-fitting medical or,

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Scientists of Arizona State University discover potential mechanism behind rare blood clots linked to adenovirus COVID-19 vaccines (VITT)

A cloud of platelet factor 4 proteins interacts with the electrostatic surface of the Oxford vaccine, as seen through the computational microscope.  An international team of scientists believe they may have found a molecular mechanism behind the extremely rare blood clots linked to adenovirus COVID-19 vaccines. “The mechanism which results in this condition, termed vaccine-induced

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Safety and immunogenicity of booster COVID-19 vaccine following two previous doses of AstraZeneca or Pfizer-BioNTech in the UK

Six different COVID-19 boosters are safe and provoke strong immune responses in people who have previously received a two-dose course of ChAdOx1-nCov19 (Oxford–AstraZeneca [ChAd]) or BNT162b2 (Pfizer-BioNTech [BNT]), according to the first randomised trial of boosters given after two doses of either vaccine, published in The Lancet. ChAd has now been deployed in more than 180

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Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant: a new chapter in the COVID-19 pandemic. A comment on The Lancet by researchers of Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa

A new comment on Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant has been published on The Lancet by South African researchers of Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in Durban South Africa. The Authors highlight that the first sequenced omicron case was reported from Botswana on Nov 11, 2021, and a few days lateranother sequenced case was reported

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Robotic high-throughput biomanufacturing and functional differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells using the CompacT SelecT (CTST) platform

The CompacT SelecT (CTST) platform is a modular robotic system that integrates a full range of cell culture proceduresunder sterile conditions that mimic the manual cell culture process. These procedures include automated handling of different cell culture vessels, pipetting large and small volumes at adjustable speeds, cell counting, cell viability analysis, cell density assessment, microscopic

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Increased risk of SARS-CoV-2 reinfection associated with emergence of the Omicron variant in South Africa 2021-12-01: new paper published in medRxiv

Objective of the paper is to examine whether SARS-CoV-2 reinfection risk has changed through time in South Africa, in the context of the emergence of the Beta, Delta, and Omicron variants A retrospective analysis of routine epidemiological surveillance data Setting Line list data on SARS-CoV-2 with specimen receipt dates between 04 March 2020 and 27

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A new CRB Life Sciences Report Highlights rapid advances in the development of cell and gene therapies

Rapid advances in the development of cell and gene therapies over the past several years have heralded “an evolutionary time in medicine.” That’s the opinion of Peter Walters, Director of Advanced Therapies at CRB. That thought reflects data seen in CRB’s annual Horizon Life Sciences report that highlights the rapid expansion of the development of cell and

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Multiyear Factor VIII Expression after AAV Gene Transfer for Hemophilia A in 16 out of 18 volunteers

About 20,000 people in the U.S. live with hemophilia A. It’s a rare X-linked genetic disorder that affects predominantly males and causes their blood to clot poorly when healing wounds. For some, routine daily activities can turn into painful medical emergencies to stop internal bleeding, all because of changes in a single gene that disables

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No increased risk of Myocardial Infarction, Stroke and Pulmonary Embolism After BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine in People Aged 75 Years or Older: French study published in JAMA

A French population-based study provides further evidence that the BNT162b2 Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA COVID-19 vaccine does not increase the short-term risk for serious cardiovascular adverse events in older people. The study showed no increased risk of myocardial infarction (MI), stroke, or pulmonary embolism (PE) following vaccination in adults aged 75 years or older in the 14 days following vaccination. “These

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Moderna Announces Strategy to Address Omicron (B.1.1.529) SARS-CoV-2 Variant

Company testing three existing COVID-19 vaccine booster candidates against the Omicron variant Company announcing a new variant-specific vaccine candidate against Omicron (mRNA-1273.529) Moderna, a biotechnology company pioneering messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics and vaccines, today announced updates to its strategy to address SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern, given the emergence of the B.1.1.529 (Omicron) variant. The recently described Omicron

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A systematic review on Blockchain applications in health care for COVID-19 and beyond published on The Lancet Digital Health

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a substantial and global impact on health care and has greatly accelerated the adoption of digital technology. One of these emerging digital technologies, blockchain, has unique characteristics (eg, immutability, decentralisation, and transparency) that can be useful in multiple domains (eg, management of electronic medical records and access rights, and mobile

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Scientific analysis of COVID death data incorrectly manipulated to demonstrate vaccines are ineffective or worse: that’s not the reality

Social media posts commenting on data from the UK, Israel and South Africa, among others, claim deaths from COVID (or all deaths) are now higher in vaccinated than unvaccinated citizens. Others make the more moderate claim vaccines do nothing to prevent death from COVID. These reports appear intimidating, because they usually utilise real data or statistics. Many of the raw numbers presented are

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Nearly half a million lives saved by COVID-19 vaccination only among people over 60 in less than a year in Europe following a WHO/ECDC study

A new study by the WHO Regional Office for Europe and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published in Eurosurveillance estimates that 470,000 lives have been saved among those aged 60 years and over since the start of COVID-19 vaccination roll-out in 33 countries across the WHO European Region. This estimate does not

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A small cluster of SARS_CoV-2 B.1.1.529 new variant with 32 spike protein mutations identified in Botswana and in Gauteng Province in South Africa

A new variant of COVID-19 identified in Botswana and Nigeria with dozens of mutations is being watched closely, amid fears it could be resistant to the effect of currently-used vaccines. The B.1.1.529 variant has more mutations affecting the spike protein targeted by vaccines than any other strain identified to date, although it’s not yet clear

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Review on Covid-19 Vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia published in The Lancet Haematology

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines for SARS-CoV-2 were developed, tested, and introduced at a remarkable speed. Although the vaccine introduction had a major impact on the evolution of COVID-19, some potential rare side-effects of the vaccines were observed. Within a short period, three scientific groups from Norway, Germany, and the UK reported cerebral

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Harms Linked to Unapproved Stem Cell Interventions Highlight Need for Greater FDA Enforcement

Unproven regenerative medical products have led to infections, disabilities, and deaths Stem cell products and other regenerative therapies have significant potential to treat traumatic injuries and serious diseases. Although some have earned approval from the Food and Drug Administration, most have not, and many of these unapproved interventions have led to life-threatening infections, chronic pain,

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UCalgary study shows how desamethasone, used to treat critically ill COVID-19 patients, modulates immature neutrophils and interferon programming and why drug may only benefit males

Research into the way our immune systems respond to COVID-19 reveals the sex of a patient may affect how well drugs work Anew study from the University of Calgary shows how dexamethasone, the main treatment for severe COVID-19 lung infections, alters how immune cells work, which may help male patients, but has little to no benefit for

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New analysis predicts how well vaccines will work against COVID-19 strains

Vaccines are less effective against some COVID-19 variants and boosting may be required within one year to maintain efficacy above 50 per cent, according to a new study. The researchers from the Sydney Institute for Infectious Diseases at the University of Sydney, UNSW Sydney’s Kirby Institute and the University of Melbourne’s Doherty Institute have conducted an analysis

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Early Convalescent Plasma for High-Risk Outpatients with Covid-19: results of a new trial published in NEJM confirm failure

The object of the study was to verify if early administration of convalescent plasma obtained from blood donors who have recovered from coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) could prevent disease progression in acutely ill, high-risk patients with Covid-19. In this randomized, multicenter, single-blind trial, we assigned patients who were being treated in an emergency department for

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Gene therapy effective in children with severe Hurler’s syndrome: the treatment, developed by SR-Tiget in Milan published in NEJM

The first tests on eight children show favorable preliminary results, with an adjustment of motor and cognitive skills and improvements in some brain and joint parameters Gene therapy takes steps forward in the fight against rare diseases. Eight children with severe Hurler’s syndrome, a disease associated with reduced life expectancy, benefited from this therapy. The

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First Data show Pfizer PF-07321332 Protease Inhibitor pill is effective in Preventing Severe COVID-19

Over the course of this pandemic, significant progress has been made in treating COVID-19 and helping to save lives. That progress includes the development of life-preserving monoclonal antibody infusions and repurposing existing drugs, to which NIH’s Accelerating COVID-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines (ACTIV) public-private partnership has made a major contribution. But for many months we’ve had hopes that a

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Incidence and risk factors associated with bleeding and thrombosis following chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy

Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR T) therapy has revolutionized the field of malignant hematology. CD19-targeted CAR T-cell therapy has resulted in effective, often durable, responses for chemotherapy-refractory B-cell lymphoma and B-acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) in prospective clinical trials. CAR T cells against B-cell maturation antigen have also shown overall response rates in the range of

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Monash University study uncovers a new understanding of how mesenchymal stromal cells benefit patients in cell therapy

The therapeutic benefit to patients receiving mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) therapy is not because the injected cells remain viable, but because of cell death, researchers at the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute (BDI) have found. In recent years, significant efforts have been made to develop stem cell-based therapies for difficult-to-treat diseases. MSC therapy is regenerative cell-based

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Low-molecular-weight heparin use in Covid-19 is associated with curtailed viral persistence: a retrospective multicentre observational study

Clotting problems and resulting complications are common in COVID-19 patients. Researchers at the Medical University of Vienna have now shown that a member of the anticoagulant group of drugs not only has a beneficial effect on survival of COVID-19 patients, but also influences the duration of active infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. The results were

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New research by Boston Children’s Hospital on ricolinostat repurposing to curb neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) and to fight severe inflammation in Covid-19

As we’ve seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, serious infections sometimes trigger an excessive inflammatory reaction that does as much harm — or more — than the infection itself. New research at Boston Children’s Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital suggests a potential way to block this hyperinflammation response by repurposing or modifying an existing drug.

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Direct Comparison of Antibody Responses to Pfizer, Astrazeneca, Sputnik V and Sinopharm SARS-CoV-2 Vaccines in Mongolia: study published in Cell Host & Microbe by Stanford University

Different SARS-CoV-2 vaccines are approved in various countries, but few direct comparisons of the antibody responses they stimulate have been reported. In thi paper the authors collected plasma specimens in July 2021 from 196 Mongolian participants fully vaccinated with one of four COVID-19 vaccines: Pfizer/BioNTech, AstraZeneca, Sputnik V and Sinopharm. Functional antibody testing with a

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Study reveals tactics used by US stem cell clinics to market their treatments

Stem cell clinics continue to thrive in the US and worldwide, building their business on misleading advertising and offering unapproved and unproven stem-cell-based interventions (SCBI). A research recently published in Stem Cell Reports by Emma Frow, David Brafman, and colleagues from Arizona State University, asked what kinds of claims and evidence these clinics use to market their

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Covid-19 vaccines protection against hospitalization and ICU effectiveness dropping over time: results in different studies

As millions of eligible people consider getting a booster shot, many are wondering what the data tells us about the effectiveness of the vaccines, and how much their protection might be waning. The good news is that a growing body of research shows that the vaccines authorized remain highly protective against severe disease and hospitalization

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SARS-CoV-2 uses sugars to invade human cells, new study by University of Alberta shows

Understanding the process could help scientists look out for new, more infectious variants. Sugars found on the surface of human cells influence COVID-19 infection, according to a University of Alberta-led study that is one of the first to observe this relationship and suggests that cells in the brain might be particularly susceptible. “The idea here is that

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Novel mesenchymal stem cell therapy approach proves effective in treating COVID-19

An international team of researchers has advanced a new therapeutic approach using stem cells to treat COVID-19. Despite many advances in treating the COVID-19 virus there remains no specific cure for patients with infection. This is especially the case with hospitalised patients who end up in the ICU requiring mechanical ventilation support. Key members of

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Cell therapies, Gene therapy and CAR-T cells highlighted in EFPIA Pipeline Review 2021 Update

The new EFPIA Pipeline Review reveals that infectious, inflammatory, cancer, Alzheimer’s and rare disesases areas are among the top priorities of researchers running clinical trials today to investigate new medicines and vaccines. The comprehensive report found that in 2020 alone, around 5,000 clinical trials were launched – despite the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, the volume of trials has

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BNT162b2 Covid-19 Vaccine in Children 5 to 11 Years of Age evaluation paper published in NEJM

Safe, effective vaccines against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) are urgently needed in children younger than 12 years of age. A phase 1, dose-finding study and an ongoing phase 2–3 randomized trial are being conducted to investigate the safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy of two doses of the BNT162b2 vaccine administered 21 days apart in children 6

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Ernst & Young white paper details how the Cell Gene Therapy industry can collaborate to advance the field

Harnessing the power of cell and gene therapies will require a next-generation level of collaboration not seen before the COVID-19 pandemic. In brief Before cell and gene therapies can meet increasing demand at the necessary speed and scale, the industry must address key challenges. A fractured supply chain, complicated manufacturing and unprecedented pricing are among

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Pfizer’s novel COVID-19 oral antiviral protease inhibitor reduced risk of hospitalization or death by 89% in interm analysis of Phase 2/3 EPIC-HR study

PAXLOVID™ (PF-07321332; ritonavir) was found to reduce the risk of hospitalization or death by 89% compared to placebo in non-hospitalized high-risk adults with COVID-19 In the overall study population through Day 28, no deaths were reported in patients who received PAXLOVID™ as compared to 10 deaths in patients who received placebo Pfizer plans to submit the data as

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The cost-effectiveness of gene therapy for severe hemophilia B: a microsimulation study published in Blood

In the last issue of Blood, Boulos et al analyze the cost-effectiveness of factor IX gene therapy in patients with severe hemophilia B, in a microsimulation Markov model. Hemophilia is an X-linked disease that affects 400000 people worldwide, of whom 15% have hemophilia B caused by deficiency of factor IX (FIX), which affected the offspring of Queen Victoria,

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Oxford University researchers uncover gene that doubles risk of death from COVID-19

Scientists at Oxford University have identified the gene responsible for doubling the risk of respiratory failure from COVID-19. Sixty percent of people with South Asian ancestry carry the high-risk genetic signal, partly explaining the excess deaths seen in some UK communities, and the impact of COVID-19 in the Indian subcontinent. Previous work has already identified

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SP-101, an investigational inhaled gene therapy for cystic fibrosis, shows potential in animal study

Treatment with SP-101, an investigational gene therapy that Spirovant Sciences is developing for people with cystic fibrosis (CF) who are unable to benefit from current treatments, effectively increased CFTR gene activity in a ferret model of the disease, the company reported. Katherine Excoffon, PhD, Spirovant’s vice president of research, presented the data at the 2021 North American Cystic Fibrosis Conference (NACFC). Her

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Breakthrough Infection Study Compares Decline in Covid-19 Vaccine Effectiveness and Consequences for Mortality

A new study in the leading journal Science reviewed COVID-19 breakthrough infections among 780,225 Veterans, finding that vaccine protection declined from 87.9% to 48.1% during the 2021 Delta surge in the U.S. The researchers from PHI, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the University of Texas Health Science Center found a dramatic decline in effectiveness

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The American stem cell sell in 2021: U.S. businesses selling unlicensed and unproven stem cell interventions. Ethical issues and misinformation linked to overhyped science.

In March 2021, 1,480 U.S. businesses operating 2,754 clinics were found selling purported stem cell treatments for various indications. More than four times as many businesses than were identified 5 years ago are selling stem cell products that are not FDA-approved and lack convincing evidence of safety and efficacy following a new paper published in Cell

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Children Hospital of Philadelphia Researchers Develop a New Class of CAR-T Cells that Target Previously Untargetable Cancer Drivers

In a breakthrough for the treatment of aggressive solid cancers, researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) have developed a novel cancer therapy that targets proteins inside cancer cells that are essential for tumor growth and survival but have been historically impossible to reach. Using the power of large data sets and advanced computational approaches,

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A review on Mesenchymal stem cells-derived exosomes for drug delivery

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multi-functional stem cells that are present in multiple human tissues and can be found in the spinal cord, umbilical cord blood, umbilical cord tissue, placenta tissue, adipose tissue, etc.. With low immunogenicity, multi-directional diferentiation ability, in particular homing ability, MSCs have signifcant research potential in cardiovascular diseases, nervous diseases, and

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Stem cell treatment failed to reduce inflammation in Multiple Sclerosis

Treatment with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has failed to significantly reduce inflammation in the brain of adults with multiple sclerosis (MS) in a phase 2 clinical trial. The into-the-vein treatment also failed to improve other clinical aspects of the condition. The results were shared in a study titled “Safety, tolerability, and activity of mesenchymal stem cells versus placebo

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Serine protease inhibitor Nafamostat may be beneficial in the treatment of high-risk COVID-19 patients requiring oxygen treatment: results of a randomised Phase II clinical trial published in EClinical Medicine.

Nafamostat, a serine protease inhibitor, has been used for the treatment of disseminated intravascular coagulation and pancreatitis. In vitro studies and clinical reports suggest its beneficial effect in the treatment of COVID-19 pneumonia. This phase 2 open-label, randomised, multicentre, controlled trial evaluated nafamostat (4.8 mg/kg/day) plus standard-of-care (SOC) in hospitalised patients with COVID-19 pneumonia (i.e.,

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Long-term persistence of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody responses after Covid-19 infection: levels conferring 50% protection are maintained for around 990 days post-symptom onset.

In a paper published on The lancet researchers of University of Hong Kong used 50% plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) antibody titre data from 115 sera collected longitudinally from 90 to 386 days after onset of symptoms or first RT-PCR confirmation from 62 RT–PCR confirmed SARS-CoV infected individuals, to estimate that PRNT antibody will remain

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Lifelong calcium and 25-hydroxyvitamin D use may shorten life expectancy and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease: a Karolinska Institute study shows.

Supplementation with calcium and vitamin D, alone or together, leads to increases in serum calcium (S-Ca) concentration with a peak 4 h after each ingestion and a more long-lasting elevation in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (S-25(OH)D), the marker metabolite for vitamin D status. Whether regular calcium supplementation elevates S-Ca after several months of use is debatable

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Gene Therapies against Rare diseases Boosted by NIH, FDA and Industry Alliance

The National Institutes of Health, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, 10 pharmaceutical companies and five non-profit organizations have partnered to accelerate development of gene therapies for the 30 million Americans who suffer from a rare disease. While there are approximately 7,000 rare diseases, only two heritable diseases currently have FDA-approved gene therapies. The newly launched Bespoke

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Gene Therapy Shows Early Promise as Angelman Syndrome Treatment

The new therapy was generally well-tolerated and prevented key signs of the condition in animal models. Scientists at the UNC School of Medicine have reported in the journal JCI Insight encouraging early tests of a gene therapy strategy against Angelman syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that features poor muscle control and balance, hard-to-treat epilepsy, and intellectual disabilities. Angelman

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Alberta University researchers team uncovers new proteases inhibitors to slow SARS-CoV-2 replication mechanism

Novel protease inhibitors show promise for developing safer, more effective COVID-19 treatments. A team of researchers at the University of Alberta has uncovered new antiviral agents that could lead to safer and more effective COVID-19 treatments than other current drugs under development. In a recently published paper in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, the researchers identified novel protease

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Patients with severe COVID-19 could benefit from higher doses of corticosteroids

A large international study in hospitalised patients with severe COVID-19 has shown that while a higher dose of steroids did not significantly reduce mortality, there was a trend towards benefit without increased side effects. Published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the study compared the standard 6mg dose of the steroid dexamethasone

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Previously SARS-CoV-2 infected, if unvaccinated: reinfection by SARS-CoV-2 is likely, study finds

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been much uncertainty about how long immunity lasts after an unvaccinated person is infected with SARS-CoV-2. Now a team of scientists led by faculty at Yale School of Public Health and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte have an answer: Strong protection following natural infection is short-lived. “Reinfection

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COVID-19 Vaccines guarantee protection to non immune family members too

Risk of COVID-19 in families with two to five members. An interesting new study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine examines the risk of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) to a susceptible individual who is part of a family with COVID-19 immunity. Study: Association Between Risk of COVID-19 Infection in Nonimmune Individuals and COVID-19 Immunity in Their Family

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How many people get ‘long COVID?’ More than half, researchers find.

Half of COVID survivors experience lingering symptoms six months after recovery More than half of the 236 million people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 worldwide since December 2019 will experience post-COVID symptoms — more commonly known as “long COVID” — up to six months after recovering, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers. The research

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Cell-based therapies for retinal diseases: review of clinical trials and direct to consumer “cell therapy” clinics

This review aims to outline the particular approaches in the different published clinical trials for cell-based therapies for retinal diseases. The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) is implicated in the pathophysiology of many retinal degenerative diseases. This cell layer is also an ideal target for cell-based therapies. Several early phase clinical trials evaluatingcell therapy approaches for

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CRISPR CAR-T cells can Revolutionize Cancer Treatment

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States, taking half a million lives each year. CAR T technology has successfully harnessed the human immune system to produce awe-inspiring cancer remission rates. CRISPR-mediated genome engineering has enabled new developments in CAR T cells to bypass logistical, technical, and immunological roadblocks, making the

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Anti-Platelet Factor 4 Antibodies Causing VITT do not Cross-React with SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein

In Blood, Greinacher and colleagues examine humoral responses in vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT) and COVID-19 to determine whether these illnesses are immunologically distinct or represent a disease continuum. At a surface level, vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT), a recently described complication of adenoviral-based COVID-19 vaccines, and COVID-19 have much in common. Both illnesses owe their origins to severe

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Convalescent plasma is “futile” as COVID-19 treatment for critically ill patients, trial published on JAMA shows

In the earliest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, the medical community turned to a century-old treatment: Take blood from recovered patients and give it to the sick. The hypothesis was that components in the so-called “convalescent plasma” that fought off the disease once could do it again, something that has worked in other diseases, such

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New study published in Pediatrics: more than 140,000 U.S. Children Lost Primary or Secondary Caregiver Due to Covid Pandemic

One U.S. child loses a parent or caregiver for every four COVID-19 deaths, a new modeling study published today in Pediatrics reveals.  The findings illustrate orphanhood as a hidden and ongoing secondary tragedy caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and emphasizes that identifying and caring for these children throughout their development is a necessary and urgent part of

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Internet hawkers of stem cell therapies for ocular diseases

Patients have been blinded or have experienced retinal detachments after treatment with so-called stem cell therapies such as intravitreal injections of autologous stem cells that are not FDA approved for many ocular conditions across the US and that were marketed directly to patients. Currently, the FDA has regulatory authority over such companies and since June

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Unapproved Stem Cell Therapies Harms Highlight Need for Greater Regulatory Enforcement

Unproven regenerative medical products have led to infections, disabilities and deaths Overview Stem cell products and other regenerative therapies have significant potential to treat traumatic injuries and serious diseases. Although some have earned approval from the Food and Drug Administration, most have not, and many of these unapproved interventions have led to life-threatening infections, chronic

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COVID-19 Booster Shots

More than 180 million Americans, including more than 80 percent of people over age 65, are fully vaccinated against the SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for COVID-19. There’s no question that full vaccination is the best way to protect yourself against this devastating virus and reduce your chances of developing severe or long-lasting illness if you do

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Covid-19: 80% of young and >90% of adults in UK have antibodies: Office for National Statistics data suggest.

Around eight in ten young adults in the UK are now likely to have SARS-CoV-2 antibodies either from past infection or because they have been vaccinated, the latest survey from the Office for National Statistics has shown. The fortnightly bulletin on antibody and vaccination levels in the UK community population includes data to 13 August

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Two Alarms for Poor Prognosis After Rare VITT With AstraZeneca Jab

British doctors have identified two factors — very low platelet counts and brain bleeds — which they say dramatically increase the likelihood of a patient dying following the very rare but devastating side effect of vaccine-induced immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (VITT) after the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (Oxford-AstraZeneca) vaccine. However, they believe that the surge in the VITT side

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NICE issues new COVID-19 rapid guideline on vaccine-induced immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (VITT)

Patients who are acutely unwell with suspected vaccine induced immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (VITT) should be referred immediately to the emergency department, says new rapid guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Covid-19 rapid guideline: vaccine-induced immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (VITT) NICE guideline [NG200].

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SARS-CoV-2 activates lung epithelial cell proinflammatory signaling and leads to immune dysregulation in COVID-19 patients

The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2), becomes a global threat to humanity. In severe COVID-19 patients, excessive proinflammatory responses and impaired host immune system are observed which could result in the progression of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and even death. In-depth investigation of SARS-CoV-2 infected

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A new study analyses the rate of thrombosis in children and adolescents hospitalized with COVID-19 or MIS-C

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is associated with thrombotic complications in adults, but the incidence of COVID-19-related thrombosis in children and adolescents is unclear. Most children with acute COVID-19 have mild disease, but coagulopathy has been associated with multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), a postinfectious complication.

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EMA PRAC Concludes There is No Link Between Zynteglo and AML

EMA’s safety committee, PRAC, has concluded that there is no evidence linking the viral vector in Zynteglo to a blood cancer known as acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The European Medicines Agency’s (EMA’s) Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) has concluded that there is no evidence linking the viral vector in Zynteglo to a blood cancer known

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Delayed second dose and third doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine lead to heightened immune response

Research on the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, also known as the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, indicates that a long interval between first and second doses does not compromise the immune response after a late second dose. Additionally, a third dose of the vaccine continues to boost antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. The results were released in a preprint today. Delayed second dose The researchers

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The European Commission has identified the first five drug candidates as part of a new strategy to select the preferred treatments for COVID-19 in the EU.

Among the five therapeutic candidates identified are Eli Lilly’s repurposed arthritis medicine Olumiant (baricitinib) and investigational antibody drugs for early-stage COVID-19. This includes Lilly’s bamlanivimab and etesevimab combination, Roche and Regeneron’s REGEN-COV (casirivimab and imdevimab), Celltrion’s regdanivimab and GlaxoSmithKline/Vir Biotech’s sotrovimab. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is currently assessing an application for the extension of

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Are COVID-19 vaccines effective against hospital admission with the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant ?

Vaccine effectiveness (VE) estimates against symptomatic disease with the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant have been recently reported. After a full course, VE reached 88% with the Pfizer/BioNTech BNT162b2 vaccine and 67% with the AstraZeneca ChAdOx1 AZD1222 vaccine. This provided important evidence that despite modest reductions in protection, vaccines remain effective against Delta. However, the very recent

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Tokyo University of Science Scientists Find Drug Duo That May Cure COVID-19 Together

Preclinical experiments show that the drugs cepharanthine and nelfinavir may be effective treatments for COVID-19 While preventative care for COVID-19 has made much noise (with vaccines having rolled out in most countries), the soaring infection rates indicate the need for effective treatments. Using cultured cells to study SARS-CoV-2 infections, researchers at the Tokyo University of

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Gene therapy appears more cost effective than current treatments for severe hemophilia B

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital provides the first gene therapy manufacturing and distribution cost report for hemophilia B. A St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital analysis found a major gap between the cost to manufacture and distribute hemophilia B gene therapy and the $2 million-plus price reportedly under consideration for hemophilia gene therapy now in development. The study appeared

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A new report on Pediatrics details 7 cases of myocarditis after COVID-19 vaccination

A new report takes a close look at seven teen boys who developed myocarditis after COVID-19 vaccination, each of whom had similar symptoms, timing and outcomes. While health officials investigate whether vaccination caused this condition, Judith A. Guzman-Cottrill, D.O., a corresponding author of the report, said she hoped the report would raise clinicians’ awareness to suspect

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Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine recipients have lower antibody levels targeting the Delta variant first discovered in India

Levels of antibodies in the blood of vaccinated people that are able to recognise and fight the new SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant first discovered in India (B.1.617.2) are on average lower than those against previously circulating variants in the UK, according to new laboratory data from the Francis Crick Institute and the National Institute for Health Research

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A Novel Form of Macrophage-based Immunotherapy Developed by Georgia State University Has the Potential to Revolutionize Cancer Treatment

A novel form of macrophage-based immunotherapy is effective at treating a broad spectrum of cancers, including those at advanced stages, according to a groundbreaking study led by Georgia State immunology professor Yuan Liu.  Liu’s treatment works by leveraging macrophages, specialized white blood cells involved in the detection and elimination of cancer cells and other pathogens. Macrophages also activate

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Tracking SARS-CoV-2 variants

All viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, change over time. Most changes have little to no impact on the virus’ properties. However, some changes may affect the virus’s properties, such as how easily it spreads, the associated disease severity, or the performance of vaccines, therapeutic medicines, diagnostic tools, or other public health and social measures.  WHO, in collaboration with partners, expert networks, national authorities,

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Deep Pharma Intelligence Releases Analytical Report “Cell Therapies In Healthcare Landscape Overview 2021”

Deep Pharma Intelligence released a special 115-page analytical report Cell Therapies In Healthcare Landscape Overview 2021 (Stem Cells and CAR-Ts), which is the first comprehensive and systematic overview of cell therapies landscape by the company. This report is specifically focused on Stem Cell therapies and Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapies, and it is the first

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Scientific evidence that informed UK Government’s response to COVID-19 including first lockdown is published in Royal Society Special Theme issue

Scientific evidence that was used to inform the UK government’s key policies impacting millions of people during the first wave of COVID-19 including the rule of six and the first national stay-at-home order is published today [31 May] in the journal of the Royal Society. The Special Theme issue is compiled and guest edited by

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German researchers say Vaccine induced Thrombosis is caused by adenovirus vector and can be fixed

AstraZeneca continues to discuss the cause of rare blood clots with regulators and scientists after German researchers said they discovered the link to its Covid-19 vaccines. The U.K. pharma company said the theory put forward by the Goethe University laboratory in Frankfurt on Wednesday is one of many that AstraZeneca scientists are investigating. “We are continuing to

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Smart CAR-T Cell Therapies for Solid Cancers Ready to Move Toward Clinical Trials

Immunotherapies that fight cancer have been a life-saving advancement for many patients, but the approach only works on a few types of malignancies, leaving few treatment options for most cancer patients with solid tumors. Now, in two related papers published April 28, 2021, in Science Translational Medicine, researchers at UCSF have demonstrated how to engineer smart immune cells

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EU CE marked Google’s Dermatology tool could find skin problems using just the smartphone camera and AI. Results published in Nature Medicine.

Google also announced plans to release a new “AI-powered dermatology assist tool” that helps users understand what’s going on with their skin. Results have been published in Nature Medicine. Google has made a number of announcements at I/O 2021 to showcase the company’s technological advancements. It also announced plans to release a new “AI-powered dermatology assist

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Mask Use and Ventilation Improvements to Reduce COVID-19 Incidence in Elementary Schools

What is already known about this topic? Kindergarten through grade 5 schools educate and address the students’ physical, social, and emotional needs. Preventing SARS-CoV-2 transmission in schools is imperative for safe in-person learning. What is added by this report? COVID-19 incidence was 37% lower in schools that required teachers and staff members to use masks

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Gene therapy offers potential cure to children born with immunodeficiency due to adenosine deaminase deficiency.

Study shows treatment developed by international team restored immune function in more than 95% of patients in three clinical trials An experimental form of gene therapy developed by a team of researchers from UCLA and Great Ormond Street Hospital in London has successfully treated 48 of 50 children born with a rare and deadly inherited

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A novel defense mechanism for SARS-CoV-2 discovered by researchers of Hokkaido University

Scientists from Hokkaido University have discovered a novel defensive response to SARS-CoV-2 that involves the viral pattern recognition receptor RIG-I. Upregulating expression of this protein could strengthen the immune response in COPD patients. In the 18 months since the first report of COVID-19 and the spread of the pandemic, there has been a large amount

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Researchers identify protein “signature” of severe COVID-19: interactions among myeloid, epithelial and T cells drive tissue damage

Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have identified the protein “signature” of severe COVID-19, which they describe in a new study published in Cell Reports Medicine. “We were interested in asking whether we could identify mechanisms that might be contributing to death in COVID-19,” says MGH infectious disease expert Marcia Goldberg, MD, who studies interactions between

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Mucormycosis, a new Covid complication, is worsening India’s pandemia

Mucormycosis: hyphae of the fungus Mucor, from the paranasal sinus of a patient with diabetes mellitus. Public health officials report a rare black fungus infection, called mucormycosis, which is increasingly seen in vulnerable patients, including those with COVID-19 disease. India faces a global health crisis as the number of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2

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New research reveals why some patients may test positive for COVID-19 long after recovery

In the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare workers analyzing test results began noticing something strange: patients who had already recovered from COVID-19 would sometimes inexplicably test positive on a PCR test weeks or even months later.  Although people can catch COVID-19 for a second time, this did not appear to be the case

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Fully vaccinated healthcare workers in Israel were up to 30 times less likely to be infected

Pfizer and BioNTech’s coronavirus reduces the risk of getting sick from COVID-19 by five- to 30-fold for fully immunized people, two new studies show.  In one report, just 0.4 percent of healthcare workers in Israel who received both shots of the COVID-19 immunization later tested positive compared to 7.2 percent of unvaccinated employees. This means healthcare workers who

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Norwegian-Danish registry study with findings on venous thrombosis after AstraZeneca vaccination

Norwegian and Danish researchers published a register study in BMJ of over 281,000 people who have received the AstraZeneca vaccine. – The study confirms previous findings from OUS and internationally. The registry study finds 11 additional cases of venous thrombosis among 100,000 vaccinated.   The article that follows people who have received the AstraZeneca vaccine in

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New Cell Atlas of COVID Lungs Reveals Why SARS-CoV-2 Is Deadly and Different

A new study is drawing the most detailed picture yet of SARS-CoV-2 infection in the lung, revealing mechanisms that result in lethal COVID-19, and may explain long-term complications and show how COVID-19 differs from other infectious diseases. Led by researchers at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, the study found

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SARS-CoV-2 spike protein dictates syncytium-mediated lymphocyte elimination and following lymphopenia

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus is highly contagious and causes lymphocytopenia, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. In this paper published on Nature fresearchers of Laboratory of Cell Engineering, Institute of Biotechnology, Beijing, China demonstrate that heterotypic cell-in-cell structures with lymphocytes inside multinucleate syncytia are prevalent in the lung tissues

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Three peptides could be causing severe COVID-19 complications: proteolytic storm induces bradykinin disregulation

A study published in July 2020 hypothesized a link between the presence of bradykinin, a well-known peptide, and severe cases of COVID-19. Vardan Karamyan, Ph.D., an associate professor and vice chair for the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) Jerry H. Hodge School of Pharmacy Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, had not previously conducted or

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A comprehensive guide to understand how SARS-CoV-2 enters the body and drugs that could mitigate infection

In the search for treatments for COVID-19, many researchers are focusing their attention on a specific protein that allows the virus to infect human cells. This protein, which cells carry on their surface, is called angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and provides the entry point for the coronavirus to enter cells. ACE2 is present in

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COVID-19-associated coagulopathy and antithrombotic agents—lessons after 1 year

COVID-19 is associated with a high incidence of thrombotic complications, which can be explained by the complex and unique interplay between coronaviruses and endothelial cells, the local and systemic inflammatory response, and the coagulation system. Empirically, an intensified dose of thrombosis prophylaxis is being used in patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19 and several guidelines

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A Real-World Look at COVID-19 Vaccines Versus New Variants: NIH Director evaluation

Clinical trials have shown the COVID-19 vaccines now being administered around the country are highly effective in protecting fully vaccinated individuals from the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. But will they continue to offer sufficient protection as the frequency of more transmissible and, in some cases, deadly emerging variants rise? More study and time is needed to fully

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Using 4D Printing To Enable Vascularization, Bone Tissue Regeneration, Spinal Fusion

Spinal fusion is frequently performed to restore spinal stability in patients with spinal diseases, such as spinal stenosis, vertebral fractures, progressive deformities, and instability. In the past two decades, there has been marked increase in the number of people over 65 years in age who have needed spinal fusion surgery. While autogenous bone grafts have

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In JAMA US Case Reports of Cerebral Venous Sinus Thrombosis With Thrombocytopenia After Ad26.COV2.S J&J Vaccination, March 2 to April 21, 2021

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) with thrombocytopenia, a rare and serious condition, has been described in Europe following receipt of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (Oxford/AstraZeneca), which uses a chimpanzee adenoviral vector. A mechanism similar to autoimmune heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) has been proposed. In the US, the Ad26.COV2.S COVID-19 vaccine (Janssen/Johnson & Johnson), which uses a

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Extracellular Vesicles from Human Adipose-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells: A Review of Common Cargos published in Stem Cell Reviews and Reports

In recent years, the interest in adipose tissue mesenchymal cell–derived extracellular vesicles (AT-MSC-EVs) has increasingly grown. Numerous articles support the potential of human AT-MSC-EVs as a new therapeutic option for treatment of diverse diseases in the musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems, kidney, skin, and immune system, among others. This approach makes use of the molecules transported

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Francis Crick Institute @The Crick researchers uncover a naturally occurring molecule that can help coronavirus escape antibodies

Researchers have found that a natural molecule can effectively block the binding of a subset of human antibodies to SARS-CoV-2. The discovery may help explain why some COVID-19 patients can become severely ill despite having high levels of antibodies against the virus. In their research, published in Science Advances today (22 April 2021), teams from the Francis

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Outcomes in patients treated with chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy who were admitted to intensive care (CARTTAS): an international, multicentre, observational cohort study published on The Lancet Haematology

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy can induce side-effects such as cytokine release syndrome and immune effector cell-associated neurotoxicity syndrome (ICANS), which often require intensive care unit admission. The aim of the study, published in The Lancet Haematology was to describe management of critically ill CAR T-cell recipients in intensive care. An international, multicentre, observational

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Successful treatment of vaccine‐induced prothrombotic immune thrombocytopenia (VIPIT) with early steroids and IVIG.

Cases of unusual thrombosis and thrombocytopenia after administration of the ChAdOx1 nCoV‐19 vaccine (AstraZeneca) have been reported. The term vaccine‐induced prothrombotic immune thrombocytopenia (VIPIT) was coined to reflect this new phenomenon.  In vitro experiments with VIPIT patient sera indicated that high dose intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIG) competitively inhibit the platelet activating properties of ChAdOx1 nCoV‐19 vaccine induced

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Transmission, infectivity, and neutralization of a spike L452R SARS-CoV-2 variant identified in California

In a paper recently published on Cell, an emerging SARS-CoV-2 variant was identified by viral whole-genome sequencing of 2,172 nasal/nasopharyngeal swab samples from 44 counties in California, a state in the Western United States. Named B.1.427/B.1.429 to denote its 2 lineages, the variant emerged in May 2020 and increased from 0% to >50% of sequenced

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COVID-19 Vaccine J&J: EMA finds possible link to very rare cases of unusual blood clots with low blood platelets but confirms overall benefit-risk remains positive.

At its meeting of 20 April 2021, EMA’s safety committee (PRAC) concluded that a warning about unusual blood clots with low blood platelets should be added to the product information for COVID-19 Vaccine Janssen. PRAC also concluded that these events should be listed as very rare side effects of the vaccine. In reaching its conclusion, the Committee took into

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3D-Bioprinting in precision medicine: regenerative cell therapy and drug testing

Precision medicine is, broadly speaking, a sweeping aspiration that will be achieved, or not, depending on the convergence of many different disciplines. The most important of these disciplines are molecular genetics and cell biology. Besides contributing to precision medicine directly, they also contribute through 3D bioprinting. In 3D bioprinting, molecular genetics and cell biology are

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In a new paper on NEJM Pathologic Antibodies to Platelet Factor 4 were found after AstraZeneca Covid Vaccine

The mainstay of control of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic is vaccination against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Within a year, several vaccines have been developed and millions of doses delivered. Reporting of adverse events is a critical postmarketing activity. In this paper are reported findings in 23 patients who presented with

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Modeling vaccination rollouts, SARS-CoV-2 variants and the requirement for non-pharmaceutical interventions in Italy. Non pharmaceutical interventions have a higher effect on the epidemic evolution than vaccination alone.

Despite progress in clinical care for patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), population-wide interventions are still crucial to manage the pandemic, which has been aggravated by the emergence of new, highly transmissible variants. In this study, we combined the SIDARTHE model, which predicts the spread of SARS-CoV-2 infections, with a newdata-based model that projects new

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For a report published by University of Oxford risk of rare blood clotting is 10 times higher for COVID-19 than for vaccines. CVST incidence is 4 for Pfizer and 5 cases per milion doses for AstraZeneca.

Researchers at the University of Oxford have today reported that the risk of the rare blood clotting known as cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) following COVID-19 infection is around 100 times greater than normal, several times higher than it is post-vaccination or following influenza. The study authors, led by Professor Paul Harrison and Dr Maxime Taquet

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Risdiplam improves motor function and survival in infants with SMA

PTC Therapeutics has reported results from Part 2 of the pivotal FIREFISH trial of Evrysdi (risdiplam), which demonstrated that infants with type 1 spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) continued to show improvements in survival and key motor milestones after two years of treatment. PTC Therapeutics has reported results from Part 2 of the pivotal FIREFISH trial

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South Africa SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.351 easily evades Sputnik vaccine

The use of this vaccine in several countries in South America and eastern Europe, besides Russia, mandates that its efficacy against the new resistant variants be tested, as they are being found more commonly in these regions.Generation of replication-competent VSV bearing SARS-CoV-2 spike (rcVSV-CoV2-S). (A) Schematic of the rcVSV-CoV2-S genomic coding construct and the virus

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New Technique Provides Detailed Map of Lung Pathology in COVID-19. Disease progression may not depend on the persistence of the virus, but on an overreaction of the immune system.

A team led by investigators at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian has used advanced technology and analytics to map, at single-cell resolution, the cellular landscape of diseased lung tissue in severe COVID-19 and other infectious lung diseases. In the study, published online March 29 in Nature, the researchers imaged autopsied lung tissue in a way that

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What is Cerebral Venous Sinus Thrombosis (CVST), the post adenovirus Covid-19 vaccine rare clotting complication: Vaccine Immune Thrombotic Thrombocytopenia represents a small percent of cases. Need to define other cases diagnosis and treatment.

Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) occurs when a blood clot forms in the brain’s venous sinuses. This  prevents blood from draining out of the brain. As a result, blood cells may break and leak blood into the brain tissues, forming a hemorrhage. This chain of events is part of a stroke that can occur in adults

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SARS-CoV-2 infection rates of antibody-positive compared with antibody-negative health-care workers in England: a large, multicentre, prospective cohort study (SIREN) shows that previous infection with SARS-CoV-2 induces effective immunity to future infections in most individuals.

Increased understanding of whether individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 are protected from future SARS-CoV-2 infection is an urgent requirement. In a paper published on The Lancet it was investigated whether antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 were associated with a decreased risk of symptomatic and asymptomatic reinfection. A large, multicentre, prospective cohort study was done, with participants

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Letter from the Expert Haematology Panel and endorsed by Thrombosis UK, to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)

We wish to raise our concern with the MHRA regarding wording included in recent changes in MHRA guidance on the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. The MHRA Guidance issued 7th April 2021 (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/mhra-issues-new-advice-concluding-a-possible-link-between-covid-19-vaccine-astrazeneca-and-extremely-rare-unlikely-to-occur-blood-clots ) Indicates: The MHRA is not recommending age restrictions in COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca use. As a precaution, administration of COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca

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World Federation of Hemophilia and European Hemophilia Consortium release joint statement on AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

EMA, ISTH, WHO and many countries recommend benefit of COVID-19 vaccination outweighs the risks. Risks of adverse events no higher in people with bleeding disorders The European Medicines Agency (EMA) Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC), following investigation of isolated cases of unusual blood clotting with low blood platelets that have occurred in a small number

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University of Cambridge: Communicating the potential benefits and harms of the Astra-Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine

All medical treatments have potential harms as well as potential benefits, and it’s important to be able to weigh these against each other. With vaccines, the benefits are particularly complex as they can involve benefits to others as well as to ourselves – and the harms can feel particularly acute because we take vaccines when

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In two papers on NEJM researchers find VITT as responsible of AstraZeneca’s vaccine causing clots in 16 of 222 thrombosis EMA reported cases over 30 milion doses. Even US four J&J vaccine thrombosis cases under EMA evaluation scrutiny.

Doctors might have figured out why AstraZeneca Vaccine Induced Immune Thrombotic Thrombocytopenia (VITT) may cause life-threatening blood clots in a group of 16 patients with very rare cases of thrombosis and thrombocytopenia. The discovery, made in a pair of reports published online Friday in the New England Journal of Medicine, could be key to the global

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New international consortium to promote stem cell-based therapy to treat Huntington’s disease

The Stem Cells for Huntington’s Disease ( SC4HD ) is a new international consortium created to drive advanced therapy drugs (ATMP), through stem cell transplantation, to treat Huntington’s disease. The entity, made up of twenty-eight renowned researchers from ten countries, has been officially featured in the Journal of Huntington’s Disease . The main objectives of the SC4HD consortium are to

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Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine under EMA PRAC evaluation after 4 ‘serious cases’ of unusual blood clots

AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine has dominated headlines as reports of rare blood clots mounted, but, now, European drug safety regulators are investigating potential clotting risks from Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. So far in the J&J vaccine’s U.S. rollout, EU officials have tracked three cases of unusual blood clots with low blood platelets following vaccination, the European

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AstraZeneca COVID vaccine 70% effective vs B117 variant

Data from a UK phase 2/3 clinical trial suggest the AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-vaccine is 70.4% effective against symptomatic COVID-19 caused by the B117 variant, which was identified in the United Kingdom in late 2020. The data, published in The Lancet yesterday, also showed it was 28.9% effective at preventing asymptomatic infections or cases with unknown symptoms. Overall efficacy was

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An international working group (IWG) consensus report redefines outcomes in immune TTP

Immune-mediated thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (iTTP) is a potentially fatal thrombotic microangiopathy caused by autoantibody-mediated severe deficiency of ADAMTS13. Standardized definitions of response, exacerbation, remission, and relapse were initially proposed in 2003 and modified by the International Working Group for TTP in 2017. These definitions, which have been widely used in clinical practice and research, are

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AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine: EMA finds possible link to very rare cases of unusual blood clots with low blood platelets

EMA confirms overall benefit-risk remains positive EMA’s safety committee (PRAC) has concluded today that unusual blood clots with low blood platelets should be listed as very rare side effects of Vaxzevria (formerly COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca). In reaching its conclusion, the committee took into consideration all currently available evidence, including the advice from an ad hoc

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Guidance produced from the Expert Haematology Panel of British Society for Haematology focussed on syndrome of Thrombosis and Thrombocytopenia occurring after coronavirus Vaccination

An expert team of British Society for Haematology have recently been involved in diagnosing and managing a rare syndrome of thrombosis associated with low platelets which have been reported in a few cases. At the moment, any causal association with coronavirus vaccination has not been established. However, are identified patients with this syndrome in proximity

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Ranking Virus Spillover Risk: New Web App Ranks Spillover Risk for Newly Detected Viruses

SARS-CoV-2 showed the world with devastating clarity the threat undetected viruses can pose to global public health. SpillOver, a new web application developed by scientists at the University of California, Davis, and contributed to by experts from all over the world, ranks the risk of wildlife-to-human spillover for newly discovered viruses. SpillOver is the first open-source risk

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Recovered and vaccinated patients T cells recognize recent SARS-CoV-2 variants

NIH research suggests protective effects of vaccination remain intact When variants of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) emerged in late 2020, concern arose that they might elude protective immune responses generated by prior infection or vaccination, potentially making re-infection more likely or vaccination less effective. To investigate this possibility, researchers from the National Institute

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First FDA approval of CAR T-cell therapy for multiple myeloma marks milestone for patients

Approval of ide-cel for adults who have relapsed after four or more prior lines of therapy follows clinical trials led by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute investigators The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted its first approval of a CAR T-cell therapy for adults with multiple myeloma, bringing welcome hope for patients eligible for the treatment, according to researchers

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Study underscores need for multidisciplinary care for COVID-19 long-haulers

Long COVID can affect multiple organ systems and the most common symptoms include fatigue, shortness of breath, brain fog, anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Based on the limited data available, at least one-third of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 studied to date have experienced such long-term effects Physicians across the country have analyzed the

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Globally Accessible Therapy Is Found to Protect Against Lethal Inflammation from COVID-19 in Animal Models

Mount Sinai researchers have found that a widely available and inexpensive drug targeting inflammatory genes has reduced morbidity and mortality in mice infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. In a study published today in the journal Cell, the team reported that the drug, Topotecan (TPT), inhibited the expression of inflammatory genes in the lungs

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Individual SARS-CoV-2 neutralising antibody immunity lasts from days to decades. Patients were categorized in 5 groups: negative, rapid waining, slow waining, persistent and delayed response.

Study shows that antibody longevity varies widely from 40 days to as long as several decades and not everyone who has recovered from COVID-19 is immune from reinfection  Individuals with low levels of neutralising antibodies may still be protected if they have robust T-cell immunity Blood tests and a computer algorithm suggest annual vaccinations might

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Gene therapy using “zinc fingers” may help treat Alzheimer’s disease, animal study shows

Key Takeaways A single injection of a gene therapy involving what are called zinc fingers dramatically reduced levels of tau, a protein implicated in Alzheimer’s disease, in mice with the condition. The treatment was long lasting, caused no side effects, and reduced Alzheimer’s-related damage in the brain. The technology worked just the way we had

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Retroviral gene therapy with a view on previous experience and future perspectives

Gene therapy can be used to restore cell function in monogenic disorders or to endow cells with new capabilities, such as improved killing of cancer cells, expression of suicide genes for controlled elimination of cell populations, or protection against chemotherapy or viral infection. While gene therapies were originally most often used to treat monogenic diseases

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Current status and perspective of CAR-T and CAR-NK cell therapy trials in Germany

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell therapies are on the verge of becoming powerful immunotherapeutic tools forcombating hematological diseases confronted with pressing medical needs. Lately, CAR-NK cell therapies have also come into focus as novel therapeutic options to address hurdles related to CAR-T cell therapies, such as therapy-induced side effects. Currently, more than 500 CAR-T and

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U.S. NIAID discuss results released by AstraZeneca on Covid vaccine trial: AZ might have included outdated informations.

Late Monday, the Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) notified NIAID, BARDA, and AstraZeneca that it was concerned by information released by AstraZeneca on initial data from its COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial. The DSMB expressed concern that AstraZeneca may have included outdated information from that trial, which may have provided an incomplete view of the

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Aspirin use may decrease ventilation, ICU admission and death in COVID-19 patients

Researchers from the George Washington University found that aspirin may have lung-protective effects and reduce the need for mechanical ventilation, ICU admission and in-hospital mortality in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. George Washington University researchers found low dose aspirin may reduce the need for mechanical ventilation, ICU admission and in-hospital mortality in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Final results

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Astrazeneca Covid vaccine US Phase III trial met primary efficacy endpoint in preventing COVID-19 at interim analysis. No increased risk of thrombosis or events characterised by thrombosis among the 21,583 participants.

79% vaccine efficacy at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 100% efficacy against severe or critical disease and hospitalisation Comparable efficacy result across ethnicity and age,with 80% efficacy in participants aged 65 years and over Favourable reactogenicity and overall safety profile The AstraZeneca US Phase III trial of AZD1222 demonstrated statistically significant vaccine efficacy of 79% at preventing

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AstraZeneca Covid vaccine and rare thrombosis: Greifswald team suggests an autoimmune trigger in 4 of 13 German reported cases. The incidence of thrombosis in Germany is 1:123.000 doses, while in the rest of Europe 1:1.350.000.

13 cases of a venous cerebral sinus or cerebral vein thrombosis following >1,6 million doses were reported in Germany. The thrombosis occurred 4-16 days after the vaccination with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in twelve women and one man aged 20–63 years. The patients had one at the same time thrombosis and thrombocytopenia due to autoantibodies.

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New special warning introduced by EMA in the summary of COVID-19 Vaccine (ChAdOx1-S [recombinant]) product characteristics

EMA has just published the new product information leaflet for Astrazeneca Covid-19 vaccine after investigations of thrombosis rare cases reported. In the section 4.4 Special warnings and precautions for use has been added the following: Thrombocytopenia and coagulation disordersA combination of thrombosis and thrombocytopenia, in some cases accompanied by bleeding, hasbeen observed very rarely following

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A leap for­ward in research on CAR T cell ther­apy – Cel­lu­lar en­gin­eer­ing makes it pos­sible to tar­get the ther­apy also against solid tu­mours

A study recently published in the journal Science looked into how CAR T immunotherapy could be used to treat solid tumours in addition to leukaemias. The programming of CAR T cells opens avenues for applying cell therapies to, for example, breast cancer or ovarian cancer in the future. In cancer immunotherapy, cells in the patient’s

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Optimal Thromboprophylaxis protocol in Patients With COVID-19

From the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, a distinct coagulation disturbance of SARS-CoV-2 infection has been recognized. This thrombo-inflammatory phenotype, characterized by endotheliopathy, hypercoagulability, and coagulation activation, results in an increased risk of thromboembolic events. Initial observational cohort studies described high rates of venous thromboembolism (VTE) in critically ill patients with COVID-19, despite consistent use

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Sustained neutralising antibodies in the Wuhan population suggest durable protection against SARS-CoV-2

In The Lancet, Zhenyu He and colleagues report their cross-sectional study of serological responses of morethan 9500 individuals from 3600 households in Wuhan, the early epicentre for the COVID-19 outbreak. The study was initiated shortly after lockdown in Wuhan ceased in April, 2020, with follow-up over two timepoints (June and October–December, 2020). In this cross-sectional,

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CDC US COVID-19 update on new SARS-CoV-2 Variants

CDC’s national genomic surveillance program identifies new and emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants to determine implications for COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments, or vaccines authorized for use in the United States. Monitoring the spread of emerging variants in the United States relies on widespread, rapid sequencing.  To accelerate sequencing in the United States, CDC has contracted with commercial diagnostic laboratories, and,

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EMA Safety Committee confirms that COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca benefits still outweigh the risks despite possible link to rare blood clots with low blood platelets.

EMA’s safety committee, PRAC, concluded its preliminary review of a signal of blood clots in people vaccinated with COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca at its extraordinary meeting of 18 March 2021. The Committee confirmed that: the benefits of the vaccine in combating the still widespread threat of COVID-19 (which itself results in clotting problems and may be fatal)

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A new study shows recombinant ADAMTS13 reduces abnormally up-regulated von Willebrand factor in plasma from patients with severe COVID-19. A new potential role for human plasma transfusion.

Thrombosis affecting the pulmonary and systemic vasculature is common during severe COVID-19 and causes adverse outcomes. Although thrombosis likely results from inflammatory activation of vascular cells, the mediators of thrombosis remain unconfirmed. In a cross-sectional cohort of 36 severe COVID-19 patients, it was shown that markedly increased plasma von Willebrand factor (VWF) levels were accompanied

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Low ADAMTS13 Activity Correlates with Increased Mortality in COVID-19 Patients

The main hypothesis of this retrospective study is that VWF biomarkers are associated with coagulation in COVID-19. It was performed a balanced retrospective study of COVID-19 hospitalized patients with similar demographics and comorbidities and a wide range of D-dimer levels to study how VWF biomarkers correlate with coagulation, intravascular hemolysis, and outcome. Indeed, we show

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New Study from Cleveland Clinic Florida Researchers Points to Novel Drug Target for Treating COVID-19

Researchers from Cleveland Clinic’s Florida Research and Innovation Center (FRIC) have identified a potential new target for anti-COVID-19 therapies. Their findings were published in Nature Microbiology. Led by FRIC scientific director Michaela Gack, Ph.D., the team discovered that a coronavirus enzyme called PLpro (papain-like protease) blocks the body’s immune response to the infection.  More research is necessary, but the

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A two-dose regimen of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine did not show protection against mild-to-moderate Covid-19 due to the B.1.351 (South Africa) variant.

The SARS-CoV-2 spike gene has accumulated mutations within the receptor-binding domain (RBD) and the N-terminal domain (NTD). These domains are major targets of the antibody response elicited by the vaccines. The RBD mutations include the N501Y mutation, which is associated with increased affinity of SARS-CoV-2 to the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. In contrast, the E484K

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Astrazeneca Covid vaccine and blood clots: a storm in a teacup

A number of European nations, including Germany, France, Italy and Sweden, have suspended use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca covid‑19 vaccine over blood clot concerns. The World Health Organization and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) have both emphasised that there is currently no evidence linking the vaccine to blood clots and recommend that countries continue using it. Emer Cooke, director of

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How the pandemic has impacted teen mental health. Result of a Mott Poll Report

Restrictions put in place to contain COVID-19 may be particularly difficult for teens, who rely heavily on their peer and social connections for emotional support. In 2021, the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health asked a national sample of parents about the emotional impact pandemic restrictions have had on their teens age

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Association of Acute Symptoms of COVID-19 and Symptoms of Depression in Adults

52,4% patients have symptoms of major depressive disorder after COVID-19, as published in a study of Massachusetts General Hospital More than half of individuals with prior COVID-19 illness have met the criteria for symptoms of major depressive disorder, according to a research letter published online March 12 in JAMA Network Open. Roy H. Perlis, M.D., from

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Neutrophil activation tracks most closely with severe COVID-19 progression: a study on temporal and resolution dynamics of the host molecular responses confirms the main role of neutrophil proteolytic storm

The coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic has cost lives and economic hardships globally. Various studies have found a number of different factors, such as hyperinflammation and exhausted/suppressed T cell responses to the etiological SARS coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), being associated with severe COVID-19. However, sieving the causative from associative factors of respiratory dysfunction has remained rudimentary. In this

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Vaccine-induced antibodies may be less effective against several new SARS-CoV-2 variants

Key Takeaways Neutralizing antibodies induced by the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines were significantly less effective against the variants first described in Brazil/Japan and South Africa. While the ability of these variants to resist neutralizing antibodies is concerning, it doesn’t mean the vaccines won’t be effective. Understanding which mutations are most likely to allow the

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Obesity linked to higher risk for poor COVID-19 outcomes

The risk for invasive mechanical ventilation, hospitalization and death in those with COVID-19 increased with BMI, according to research published in MMWR. “The findings in this report highlight a dose-response relationship between higher BMI and severe COVID-19–associated illness and underscore the need for progressively intensive illness management as obesity severity increases,” LyudmylaKompaniyets, PhD, a postdoctoral research fellow at the CDC,

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Protease inhibitors drugs Camostat and Nafamostat inhibit new SARS-CoV-2 activators identified in the upper respiratory tract, blocking virus cell entry.

There are no therapeutics available that have been developed for COVID-19 treatment. Repurposing of already available medication for COVID-19 therapy is an attractive option to shorten the road to treatment development. The drug Camostat could be suitable. Camostat exerts antiviral activity by blocking the protease TMPRSS2, which is used by SARS-CoV-2 for entry into cells.

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UK Royal College of Physicians calls for urgent measures to protect and safeguard medical workforce involved in fight against Covid-19

In an article published in The Lancet, RCP president Professor Andrew Goddard and RCP Global vice president Dr Mumtaz Patel call for system-wide support to protect clinicians from harm. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed huge demands on global health systems which are testing doctors and health-care workers to the limits of their professional competence and taking

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A new study on BMJ shows an increase in deaths from 2.5 to 4.1 per 1000 detected cases in SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant

A highly infectious variant of COVID-19 that has spread around the world since it was first discovered in Britain late last year is between 30% and 100% more deadly than previous dominant variants, researchers said on Wednesday. In a study that compared death rates among people in Britain infected with the new SARS-CoV-2 variant known

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The challenges of CAR T-cell therapy for pediatric B-ALL. RESTORE launched Fragments of Life: A success in the frontier of medicine becomes a video game.

Sara Ghorashian, PhD, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK, outlines the challenges associated with CAR T-cell therapy for pediatric B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Discovering the best treatment phasing with other immunotherapies, such as blinatumomab and inotuzumab, improving the toxicity profile, and CAR T-cell persistence are some of the remaining

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Neurologic Involvement in Children and Adolescents Hospitalized in the US for COVID-19 or MISC

Most are transient, but some develop into life-threatening disorders Neurologic symptoms occurred frequently in children and adolescents hospitalized with COVID-19, a large case series of pediatric patients in the U.S. showed. Of 1,695 people 21 or younger hospitalized for acute COVID-19 or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), more than one in five (22%) had

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New Google-Backed Database Tracks Details on SARS-CoV-2 and Variants Cases Worldwide

A group of US and European epidemiologists on Tuesday launched an open international database that presents granular information on 5 million anonymized COVID-19 cases from more than 100 countries. Each case record in the database, which is housed at Global.health, contains up to 40 variables, including information such as the patient’s demographics and location, the date

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Can it work a single-dose Oxford–AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine followed by a 12-week booster in a wide vaccination strategy ?

Vaccines to prevent COVID-19 infection are crucial for an effective global pandemic response. In The Lancet, Merryn Voysey and colleagues report the updated primary efficacy results for the Oxford–AstraZeneca ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (AZD1222) vaccine from three single-blind, randomised controlled trials in the UK and Brazil and one double-blind study in South Africa. A subsequent report of

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SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 (UK) variant is more transmissible with a 43%-90% higher reproduction number and could induce cases resurgences.

A variant of SARS-CoV-2 that emerged in southeast England in November 2020 is more transmissible than pre-existing variants, a new modeling study of Centre for Mathematical Modelling of Infectious Diseases, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, published on Science, finds. Further analyses suggest the variant B.1.1.7 will lead to large resurgences of COVID-19 cases.

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SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7 (so called UK) is susceptible to neutralizing antibodies elicited by wild type Spike vaccines

All current vaccines for COVID-19 utilize ancestral wild type SARS-CoV-2 Spike with the goal of generating protective neutralizing antibodies. The recent emergence and rapid spread of several SARS-CoV-2 variants carrying multiple Spike mutations raise concerns about possible immune escape. One variant, first identified in the United Kingdom (B.1.1.7, also called 501Y.V1 or 20I), contains eight

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NIH Fauci and BARDA Disbrow: Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine proved 77% effective in preventing severe/critical COVID-19 occurring at least 14 days after vaccination and 85% effective in preventing severe/critical COVID-19 occurring at least 28 days after vaccination.

“The Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is a very welcome addition to the arsenal of COVID-19 vaccines and other prevention strategies. When tested among 45,000 volunteers, the single-injection vaccine proved 77 percent effective in preventing severe/critical COVID-19 occurring at least 14 days after vaccination and 85 percent effective in preventing severe/critical COVID-19 occurring at least 28 days

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Carolina clinical trial tests effectiveness of mouthwash to kill oral SARS-CoV-2

Laboratory experiments have shown mouthwash can quickly kill coronaviruses, but there’s no evidence mouthwash can prevent the virus from infecting people. The Adams School of Dentistry is investigating how well mouthwash works to reduce the amount of SARS-CoV-2. Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Adams School of Dentistry have launched a clinical trial to test

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A paper published in NEJM shows that in Israel BNT162b2 mRNA Covid-19 Vaccine reduced cases by 94%

The Pfizer BioNTech coronavirus vaccine produces as good results in the “real world” as have been previously documented in randomised trials. A case control study, which has been peer reviewed and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, compared 596 618 people who were newly vaccinated in Israel and matched them to unvaccinated controls. Two doses

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Causes of death and comorbidities in hospitalized patients with COVID-19: the majority of patients had died of COVID-19 with only contributory implications of preexisting health conditions to the mechanism of death.

Infection by the new corona virus strain SARS-CoV-2 and its related syndrome COVID-19 has been associated with more than two million deaths worldwide. Patients of higher age and with preexisting chronic health conditions are at an increased risk of fatal disease outcome. However, detailed information on causes of death and the contribution of pre-existing health

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NCI study finds that people with SARS-CoV-2 antibodies may have a low risk of future infection

People who have had evidence of a prior infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, appear to be well protected against being reinfected with the virus, at least for a few months, according to a newly published study from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). This finding may explain why reinfection appears to be relatively rare,

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FDA analysis:Janssen COVID vaccine is safe and effective also against Brazil and South Africa variant

The Food and Drug Administration’s staff released a briefing document on Wednesday endorsing Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot coronavirus vaccine as safe and effective. An FDA advisory panel will meet Friday to review the briefing document and vote on whether to recommend an emergency use authorization (EUA). The FDA could then issue the (EUA) as soon as this

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B.1.351 South Africa SARS-CoV-2 Variant is immune escaping but no increase in infectivity is shown in a paper on Cell

The 501Y.V2 variants of SARS-CoV-2 containing multiple mutations in Spike are now dominant in South Africa and are rapidly spreading to other countries. In this paper, experiments with 18 pseudotyped viruses showed that the 501Y.V2 variants do not confer increased infectivity in multiple cell types except for murine ACE2-overexpressing cells, where a substantial increase in

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Evidence of escape of SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.351 (South Africa) from natural and vaccine induced sera. An analysis of AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Novavax and Janssen vaccine efficacy.

The race to produce vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 began when the first sequence was published, and this forms the basis for vaccines currently deployed globally. Independent lineages of SARS-CoV-2 have recently been reported: UK–B.1.1.7, South Africa–B.1.351 and Brazil–P.1. These variants have multiple changes in the immunodominant spike protein which facilitates viral cell entry via the Angiotensin

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Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy in multiple myeloma: a systematic review and meta-analysis of 950 patients

Despite dramatic improvements in survival, multiple myeloma (MM) remains largely incurable, and most patients develop disease that is refractory to available treatment options. A paper just published on Blood Advances by researchers of Department of Hematological Malignancies and Cellular Therapeutics, Kansas University Medical Center, Westwood, Division of Gastroenterology, University of Toledo, Division of Hematology and

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Extremely potent human monoclonal antibodies from COVID-19 convalescent patients

Human monoclonal antibodies are safe, preventive and therapeutic tools, that can be rapidly developed to help restore the massive health and economic disruption caused by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. In this just published paper on Cell researchers of Fondazione Toscana Life Sciences, National Institute for Infectious Diseases Lazzaro Spallanzani, Imperial College London and

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European Society Blood and Marrow Transplantation Annual Report shows the rise of CAR-T Cells in Europe during year 2019 and changes in medical practices in the field of hematopoietic cell transplantation over 30 years.

Hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is an established procedure for many acquired or inherited disorders of the hematopoietic system, benign or neoplastic, including those of the immune system, and as enzyme replacement in metabolic disorders. The activity survey of the EBMT, describing the status of HCT, has become an instrument with which to observe trends and

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Immune system protects children from severe COVID-19

Children are protected from severe COVID-19 because their innate immune system is quick to attack the virus, a new study has found.     The research led by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI) and published in Nature Communications, found that specialised cells in a child’s immune system rapidly target the new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2).  MCRI’s Dr Melanie Neeland said the

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Report of Anaphylaxis After Receipt of mRNA COVID-19 Vaccines in the US—December 14, 2020-January 18, 2021 shows 4,5 cases and 2,5 cases per million doses with Pfizer and Moderna respectively.

The cases of rash on mRNA vaccines are almost non-existent and no deaths have occurred. A research published in the medical journal JAMA, points out that the probability of developing anaphylaxis is only 0.000377%, as out of the approximately 17.5 million vaccinations, no deaths occurred, while only 66 people developed anaphylaxis to mRNA vaccines. A

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Four potential COVID-19 therapeutics enter Phase 2/3 testing in NIH ACTIV-2 trial: between them Camostat mesilate, an orally administered serine protease inhibitor.

Enrollment has begun to test additional investigational drugs in the Accelerating COVID-19 Therapeutic Interventions and Vaccines (ACTIV) program. ACTIV is a public-private partnership program to create a coordinated research strategy that prioritizes and speeds development of promising COVID-19 treatments and vaccines. The new agents entering the randomized, placebo-controlled study are part of ACTIV-2, an adaptive trial designed to

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NIH experts discuss SARS-CoV-2 viral variants: a Dr. Fauci’s paper on JAMA

Editorial emphasizes need for global response. The rise of several significant variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has attracted the attention of health and science experts worldwide. In an editorial published today in JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, experts from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the

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IgM have a major role in the neutralizing activity of convalescent plasma against SARSCoV-2

Characterization of the humoral response to SARS-CoV-2, the etiological agent of COVID-19, is essential to help control the infection. The neutralization activity of plasma from COVID-19 patients decreases rapidly during the first weeks after recovery. However, the specific role of each immunoglobulin isotype in the overall neutralizing capacity is still not well understood. In this

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Artificial intelligence yields new ways to combat the coronavirus

Countering COVID-19 mutations and designing updated vaccines could occur at lightning speeds thanks to a new, USC-developed AI framework. USC researchers have developed a new method to counter emergent mutations of the coronavirus and hasten vaccine development to stop the pathogen responsible for killing thousands of people and ruining the economy. Using artificial intelligence (AI),

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A new study on Nature shows that BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine should neutralize SARS-CoV-2 spike 69/70 deletion, E484K and N501Y variants.

The Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine is effective against covid-19 variants originating in the UK and South Africa. This is the result of a study published this Monday in Nature Medicine , which showed better results in the first case, the British variant (called B.1.1.7), than in the second, the South African, or B.1.351. The differences, however, are small.

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University Health Network-led study shows Peginterferon lambda speeds up clearance of COVID-19 in outpatients

A clinical study led by Dr. Jordan Feld, a liver specialist at UHN’s Toronto Centre for Liver Disease, showed an experimental antiviral drug can significantly speed up recovery for COVID-19 outpatients – patients who do not need to be hospitalized. This could become an important intervention to treat infected patients and help curb community spread,

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Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL): FDA Grants Approval of 4th CAR-T Cell Therapy for Adults with Relapsed or Refractory DLBCL.

Breyanzi demonstrated a 73% overall response rate and 54% complete response (CR) rate in the largest pivotal trial in 3L+ LBCL, TRANSCEND NHL 001 trial Breyanzi demonstrated sustained responses in patients who achieved a CR with median duration of response not reached Grade ≥3 cytokine release syndrome and Grade ≥3 neurologic toxicities following Breyanzi treatment occurred in 4% and

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Study highlights risk of new SARS-CoV-2 mutations emerging during chronic infection and after treatment with convalescent plasma

SARS-CoV-2 mutations similar to those in the B1.1.7 UK variant could arise in cases of chronic infection, where treatment over an extended period can provide the virus multiple opportunities to evolve, say scientists. Writing in Nature, a team led by Cambridge researchers report how they were able to observe SARS-CoV-2 mutating in the case of an

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The mutation E484K, first identified in the South African SARS-CoV-2 variant, has now been identified in the UK fast-spreading variant

What do we know about the E484K mutation? The E484K mutation is not a new variant in itself, it’s a mutation which occurs in different variants and has already been found in the South African (B.1.351) and Brazilian (B.1.1.28) variants. The mutation is in the spike protein and appears to have an impact on the

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ORF9b from SARS-CoV-2, upon viral infection, antagonizes IFN-β and pro-inflammatory cytokines production mediating its interaction with NEMO and interrupting the K63-linked polyubiquitination of NEMO.

COVID-19 is a current global health threat caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Emerging evidence indicates that SARS-CoV-2 elicits a dysregulated immune response and a delayed interferons (IFNs) expression in patients, which contribute largely to the viral pathogenesis and development of COVID-19. However, underlying mechanisms remain to be elucidated. In this paper, it’s reported the

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A two-dose regimen of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (Oxford-AstraZeneca) vaccine provides minimal protection against mild-moderate COVID-19 infection from the B.1.351 coronavirus variant.

The Johannesburg Witwatersrand University Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Analytics (VIDA) Research Unit, which runs the Oxford Covid-19 vaccine trial in South Africa, has announced results. In an analysis, submitted as a pre-print prior to peer-review publication, a two-dose regimen of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine provides minimal protection against mild-moderate COVID-19 infection from the B.1.351 coronavirus

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CAR-T Therapy Ciltacabtagene Autoleucel (Cilta-cel) Accepted for Accelerated Assessment in Europe for the Treatment of Patients with Heavily Pretreated Multiple Myeloma

The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson announced today that the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) will perform an accelerated assessment of the Marketing Authorisation Application (MAA) for the B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA)-targeted chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapy ciltacabtagene autoleucel (cilta-cel). Accelerated assessment is

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A new study confirms the CDC prediction that B.1.1.7 UK variant will dominate US Covid-19 cases by March.

A more contagious variant of the coronavirus first found in Britain is spreading rapidly in the United States, doubling roughly every 10 days, according to a new study. Analyzing half a million coronavirus tests and hundreds of genomes, a team of researchers predicted that in a month this variant could become predominant in the United States,

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Open letter: Support data sharing for COVID-19 in European COVID-19 Data Portal

We need open data, especially open SARS-CoV-2 sequence data, and open science to beat COVID-19 and to prepare for future outbreaks. Why open data is so important When responding to a health crisis, data play a critical role in understanding transmission, infection and symptoms, and in identifying drug targets, developing vaccines and designing public health

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A not peer reviewed paper by London School of Hygiene finds a 35% increase of dying risk linked to the B.1.1.7 COVID-19 UK variant.

Since B.1.1.7 was first identified in September in southern England, it has become the dominant variant in the United Kingdom and has spread to more than 30 countries. To investigate whether the lineage causes an increased risk of dying, Nicholas Davies, an epidemiologist at the LSHTM, and colleagues analysed data from more than 850,000 people

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SARS-CoV-2 directly infects human erythroid progenitors: implications for emerging erythropoiesis in severe COVID19 patients.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to constitute a huge threat to public health worldwide and despite the efforts and advances to untangle the mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2 infection and transmission among humans, we are still blind to the overall COVID-19 pathology and its consequences. The results presented in this paper might help understand the emergent erythropoiesis and

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Heterologous recombinant adenovirus (rAd)-based vaccine, Gam-COVID-Vac “Sputnik V” Found 91,6% Effective Against COVID-19: a study published on The Lancet shows

A Russian vaccine against COVID-19 — Gam-COVID-Vac (dubbed “Sputnik V”) — shows 92% efficacy in interim results from a phase 3 trial reported in The Lancet. The two-dose vaccine uses replication-deficient adenoviruses to deliver a SARS-CoV-2 glycoprotein as the antigenic stimulus. Doses are administered at 21-day intervals, and the vaccine may be stored in normal freezers.

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The timing of the booster dose is determinant for improval of immunogenicity and efficacy of ChAdOx1 (Oxford Astra Zeneca ) nCoV-19 (AZD1222) vaccine

The ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (AZD1222) vaccine has been approved for emergency use by the UK regulatory authority, MHRA, with a regimen of two standard doses given with an interval of between 4 and 12 weeks. The planned rollout in the UK will involve vaccinating people in high risk categories with their first dose immediately, and delivering

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Covid-19: B.1.1.7 new UK variant patients present more commonly sore throat, fatigue, and myalgia for Office for National Statistics

People infected with the new variant of covid-19 discovered in the South East of England (known as B.1.1.7 or VUI 202012/01) are more likely to have a cough, sore throat, fatigue, or myalgia than those infected with other variants, the Office for National Statistics has reported. The data, published 27 January, also show that people

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Arizona University Researchers Develop Smartphone-Based COVID-19 test that uses a smartphone microscope and could deliver results in about 10 minutes.

Researchers at the University of Arizona are developing a COVID-19 testing method that uses a smartphone microscope to analyze saliva samples and deliver results in about 10 minutes. The UArizona research team, led by biomedical engineering professor Jeong-Yeol Yoon, aims to combine the speed of existing nasal swab antigen tests with the high accuracy of nasal swab PCR,

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33% can be the proportion of SARS-CoV-2 Infections That Are Asymptomatic for a Systematic Review

In the 14 studies with longitudinal data that reported information on the evolution of symptomatic status, nearly three quarters of persons who tested positive but had no symptoms at the time of testing remainedasymptomatic. Current data suggest that infected persons without symptoms—including both presymptomatic and asymptomatic persons—account for more than 40% of all SARS-CoV-2 transmission.

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Ferric carboxymaltose for iron deficiency at discharge after acute heart failure: a multicentre, double-blind, randomised, controlled trial shows reduction risk of heart failure hospitalizations.

1. Treatment with IV ferric carboxymaltose reduced the risk of heart failure hospitalizations in patients with iron deficiency and acute heart failure with a left ventricular ejection fraction less than 50%. 2. IV ferric carboxymaltose was generally safe but had no significant effect on the risk of cardiovascular death compared to placebo. Evidence Rating Level: 1

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For CDC, in-Person Schools May Reopen with Precautions as Data Shows Scant Virus Spread

U.S. schools operating in-person have experienced low transmission of the Chinese coronavirus, particularly when mitigation strategies such as masking and social distancing are in place, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky stressed on Friday, citing new findings by the health agency. Under President Joe Biden, the CDC has expressed support

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Who does and who doesn’t benefit from steroids for Covid-19. Results from a meta-analyses of RCTs.

Efficacy and safety of corticosteroids in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection still are debated. Because large randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and a well-conducted meta-analysis on the use of corticosteroids, focused on patients with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in intensive care units, recently were published, a meta-analysis of RCTs on corticosteroids therapy in patients with different disease severity

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Circulating SARS-CoV-2 spike N439K variants maintain fitness while evading antibody-mediated immunity

An international team of researchers has characterized the effect and molecular mechanisms of an amino acid change in the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein N439K. Viruses with this mutation are both common and rapidly spreading around the globe. The peer reviewed version of the study appears January 25 in the journal Cell. Investigators found that viruses carrying this

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The Future of Organ Transplants: Bioprinting, Stem Cells and More. A paper of Polylactide.com

In the United States alone, over 100,000 people are on the organ transplant list. Around 17 of these people will die per day without having received the transplant. It’s clear that organs from human donors will never be adequate for everyone looking for a transplant. Thus, scientists have been researching alternatives, such as using organs made from repurposed stem

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The effects of armed conflict on the health of women and children. More than 10 million deaths in children <5 years can be attributed to conflict between 1995 and 2015 globally.

Women and children bear substantial morbidity and mortality as a result of armed conflicts. This paper published in The Lancet focuses on the direct (due to violence) and indirect health effects of armed conflict on women and children (including adolescents) worldwide. It was estimate that nearly 36 million children and 16 million women were displaced

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A Clalit study shows decreased infection in SARS-CoV-2 due to the Pfizer vaccine

The Clalit Research Institute is currently examining the effect of the vaccine against the coronavirus  developed by Pfizer.  Preliminary data show that 14 days after the injection of the first vaccine, there is a real decrease in the rate of infection in the corona . The study compared the infection data of about 200,000 people aged 60 and over who

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CDC reports 2,5 Anaphylaxis Cases per million Moderna Covid-19 vaccine doses in USA.

As of January 20, 2021, a total of 24,135,690 cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and 400,306 associated deaths had been reported in the United States (https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#cases_casesper100klast7days). On December 18, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Moderna COVID-19 vaccine administered as 2 doses, 1 month apart to

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Creating a Safe CAR T-Cell Therapy to Fight Solid Tumors in Children

Scientists at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles develop newer CAR T therapy that promises to be more effective and less toxic for children with neuroblastoma. Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cell therapy—CAR T—has revolutionized leukemia treatment. Unfortunately, the therapy has not been effective for treating solid tumors including childhood cancers such as neuroblastoma. Preclinical studies using certain CAR

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11,1 cases per million doses Allergic Reactions Including Anaphylaxis After Receipt of the First Dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

Following implementation of vaccination, reports of anaphylaxis after the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine emerged.Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening allergic reaction that occurs rarelyafter vaccination, with onset typically within minutes to hours.Notifications and reports of suspected severe allergic reactions and anaphylaxis following vaccination were captured in the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), the

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Emergence of a novel SARS-CoV-2 strain in Southern California, USA

Researchers in Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles found that the variant, originated in California, was present in more than half of samples tested last week by researchers in Los Angeles. In late December, scientists in California began searching coronavirus samples for a fast-spreading new variant that had just been identified in Britain. They found it, though in

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Review of the epidemiology, susceptibility to infection, pathophysiology, immunology, complications, potential therapeutic options and response to vaccinations in people with diabetes, obesity and metabolic disorders showing mortality excess due to SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The increased prevalence of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular risk factors in people hospitalized with severe COVID-19 illness has engendered considerable interest in the metabolic aspects of SARS-CoV-2-induced pathophysiology. In this paper published in Cell Metabolism are updated concepts informing how metabolic disorders and their comorbidities modify the susceptibility to, natural history and potential treatment of

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A study shows early induction of functional SARS-CoV-2 specific T cells associates with rapid viral clearance and mild disease in COVID-19 patients

Virus-specific humoral and cellular immunity act synergistically to protect the host from viral infection. In this paper published on Cell Reports are interrogated the dynamic changes of virological and immunological parameters in 12 patients with symptomatic acute SARS-CoV-2 infection from disease onset to convalescence or death. SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA in the respiratory tract in parallel

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New study shows that BioNTech-Pfizer SARS-CoV-2 vaccine protects against highly infectious UK variant

A new study found that antibodies in patients vaccinated against COVID-19 were able to neutralize a version of the new variant. Researchers tested 10 mutations of the B117 variant, which was first identified in the UK. The COVID-19 vaccine developed by BioNTech and Pfizer is likely to protect against the highly infectious variant of the virus, originally found

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Hypothesis: Alpha-1-antitrypsin is a promising treatment option for COVID-19, due to its inhibition of neutrophil serine proteases “unfriendly fire”.

No definitive treatment for COVID-19 exists although promising results have been reported with remdesivir and glucocorticoids. Short of a truly effective preventive or curative vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, it is becoming increasingly clear that multiple pathophysiologic processes seen with COVID-19 as well as SARS-CoV-2 itself should be targeted. Because alpha-1-antitrypsin (AAT) embraces a panoply of biologic

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SARS-CoV-2 501Y.V2 escapes neutralization by South African COVID-19 donor plasma

SARS-CoV-2 501Y.V2, a novel lineage of the coronavirus causing COVID-19, contains multiple mutations within two immunodominant domains of the spike protein. In a paper recently published on https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.01.18.427166v1.full.pdf it’s shown that this lineage exhibits complete escape from three classes of therapeutically relevant monoclonal antibodies. Furthermore 501Y.V2 shows substantial or complete escape from neutralizing antibodies in

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Systematic Search for SARS-CoV-2 Main Protease Inhibitors for Drug Repurposing: Ethacrynic Acid as a Potential Drug

Research conducted by the University of Bari in collaboration with the Campus Bio-Medico University of Rome The studies carried out by the research team of the University of Bari in collaboration with the Campus Bio-Medico University of Rome, formed by Luigi Leonardo Palese, Anna Maria Sardanelli, and Camilla Isgrò of the Department of Basic Medical

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Could Gene Therapy Cure Sickle Cell Disease? Two New Studies Raise Hopes

A pair of new gene therapies promise a potentially lasting cure for sickle cell disease by subtly altering the genetic information in patients’ bone marrow cells, researchers report. Both therapies work by switching on a gene that promotes production of fetal hemoglobin, said Dr. Lewis Hsu, chief medical officer of the Sickle Cell Disease Association

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Saliva tests may be just as good as nasopharingeal swabs for COVID-19

 COVID-19 tests that use patients’ saliva to screen for the virus are just as effective as those that use swabs collected from the nose and throat, an analysis published by JAMA Internal Medicine found. Saliva-based tests correctly identified those infected with the new coronavirus 83% of the time, while nose-throat swab tests were 85% accurate, the review of

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For CDC the more contagious SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant may soon be the U.S.’s dominant strain

On December 14, 2020, the United Kingdom reported a SARS-CoV-2 variant of concern (VOC), lineage B.1.1.7, also referred to as VOC 202012/01 or 20I/501Y.V1.* The B.1.1.7 variant is estimated to have emerged in September 2020 and has quickly become the dominant circulating SARS-CoV-2 variant in England (1). B.1.1.7 has been detected in over 30 countries,

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RECOVERY trial closes recruitment to convalescent plasma treatment for patients hospitalised with COVID-19, due to no convincing evidence of the effect on clinical outcomes.

The RECOVERY trial was established as a randomised clinical trial to test a range of potential treatments for COVID-19. Since May 2020, the RECOVERY trial has included a randomised comparison of convalescent plasma vs. usual care alone. Convalescent plasma has been widely used as a treatment for COVID-19 but to date there has been no

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The Future of CAR T cells in multiple myeloma

Despite the significant improvement in survival outcomes of multiple myeloma (MM) over the past decade, it remains an incurable disease. Patients with triple-class refractory MM have limited treatment options and a dismal prognosis. Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy targeting B-cell maturation antigen has transformed the treatment armamentarium of relapsed/refractory MM (RRMM), with unprecedented overall

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Gut microbiota composition reflects disease severity and dysfunctional immune responses in patients with COVID-19: observational study published in Gut BMJ.

Imbalances in type and volume of bacteria may also be implicated in ‘long COVID’ The variety and volume of bacteria in the gut, known as the microbiome, may influence the severity of COVID-19 as well as the magnitude of the immune system response to the infection, suggests research published online in the journal Gut. Imbalances in

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EMA receives application for conditional marketing authorisation of COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca. Marketing authorisation could be issued by 29 January

EMA has received an application for conditional marketing authorisation (CMA) for a COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University. The assessment of the vaccine, known as COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca, will proceed under an accelerated timeline. An opinion on the marketing authorisation could be issued by 29 January during the meeting of EMA’s scientific committee for human medicines (CHMP), provided

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A CDC study published on JAMA shows that People without symptoms spread SARS-CoV-2 in more than half of cases.

A model developed by CDC researchers estimates that 59% of coronavirus cases in the United States are spread by asymptomatic carriers. Transmissions from individuals who have not yet begun to exhibit signs of infection account for 35% of that total, while transmissions from people who never develop symptoms make up the other 24%. A model

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Regulatory perspectives of Exosomes as therapeutics and drug delivery vehicles

Exosomes are nano-sized extracellular vesicles secreted by all cells. Extensive research over recent years has now shown these vesicles to be important players in intercellular signalling and to have a role in tissue regeneration, immunomodulation and other biological functions. A lipid bilayer protects the exosome cargo of nucleic acids and proteins from degradation and permits

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Study finds higher burden of acute brain dysfunction for COVID-19 ICU patients

COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care in the early months of the pandemic were subject to a significantly higher burden of delirium and coma than is typically found in patients with acute respiratory failure. Choice of sedative medications and curbs on family visitation played a role in increasing acute brain dysfunction for these patients. That’s

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For U.K. health officials, Interleukin-6 inhibitors (Tocilizumab or Sarilumab) should be prescribed to adult patients admitted to ICU with Covid-19 pneumonia.

Clinicians should consider prescribing intravenous tocilizumab following the criteria defined below for patients in intensive care. Intravenous sarilumab could be considered as an alternative (if available).Any provider organisation treating patients with this intervention will be required to assure itself that the internal governance arrangements have been completed before either medicine is prescribed. These arrangements may

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An In Vitro Study Shows Pfizer-Biontech COVID-19 Vaccine Elicits Neutralizing Antibodies against SARS-COV-2 with N501Y Mutation

 Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE  announced results from an in vitro study conducted by Pfizer and the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) that shows the antibodies from people who have received the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine effectively neutralize SARS-CoV-2 with a key mutation that is also found in two highly transmissible strains. The results were published

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FDA Issues Alert Regarding SARS-CoV-2 Viral Mutation to Health Care Providers and Clinical Laboratory Staff

Impact on molecular tests remains low The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is alerting clinical laboratory staff and health care providers that the FDA is monitoring the potential impact of viral mutations, including an emerging variant from the United Kingdom known as the B.1.1.7 variant, on authorized SARS-CoV-2 molecular tests, and that false negative results

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