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SARS-CoV-2 vaccine utilizing microneedle arrays appears in the literature
April 3, 2020 -- Within four weeks of the SARS-CoV-2 spike sequence becoming available, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine developed immunogens for a potential COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine is delivered through a fingertip-sized patch, and it produces antibodies specific to SARS-CoV-2 at quantities thought to be sufficient for neutralizing the virus, according to the April 2 EBioMedicine publication.  Discuss
Horseshoe crab 'farming' preserves species, makes blood test possible
April 2, 2020 -- Researchers have developed a new aquaculture-based method to harvest immune cells from horseshoe crabs that preserves the crustaceans while also creating the potential for new clinical applications, like testing blood for sepsis, according to a study published in Frontiers in Marine Science on April 1.  Discuss
Funding floodgates open for COVID-19 research
April 2, 2020 -- The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic are being felt around the world. Researchers are working at a record-setting pace to understand the novel coronavirus and develop and test therapies. As seen by recent funding announcements, mitigating the economic effects of this crisis is a top priority for the global community.  Discuss
Extracellular RNA identifies new Alzheimer's biomarker
April 2, 2020 -- The association of extracellular RNA with upregulation of the phosphoglycerate dehydrogenase gene may be a useful presymptomatic biomarker for Alzheimer's disease, according to an article published in Current Biology on March 26.  Discuss
How AI is speeding development of COVID-19 therapies
April 1, 2020 -- As the world is facing a new challenge in trying to both adapt to and defend itself against the novel coronavirus, artificial intelligence (AI) is offering new hope that a cure might be developed faster than ever before. Ulrik Kristensen, PhD, from Signify Research offers a perspective.  Discuss
Researchers bait viruses with chemically designed structures
March 31, 2020 -- A new therapeutic approach for suppressing seasonal influenza that involves synthetic phage shells that interfere with pathogen adhesion is immediately being tested for use on coronaviruses in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic. The research findings were published in Nature Nanotechnology on March 30.  Discuss
Researchers reveal vulnerabilities of 'addicted' cancer cells
March 30, 2020 -- New findings about the mechanism by which some cancer cells can become "addicted" to glucose could lead to fresh approaches to targeted cancer therapies. The results of the research were published in Nature Cell Biology on March 30.  Discuss
Scientists use bioinformatics to investigate origin of SARS-CoV-2
March 27, 2020 -- While many scientists urgently work toward developing successful therapies to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, some are looking in the opposite direction: to where SARS-CoV-2 came from. A new report published in the Journal of Proteome Research suggests that while bats are a likely natural reservoir, an intermediate host is probable.  Discuss
Controversy hits Gilead over orphan status for COVID-19 drug
March 26, 2020 -- Gilead Sciences has rescinded its request for orphan drug status for an experimental drug for treating COVID-19 just two days after getting approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The company had been hit with criticism that the approval would block other COVID-19 drugs from reaching the market.  Discuss
Researchers explore mutations to improve drug design
March 25, 2020 -- Drug resistance is a common challenge when designing therapeutics for cancers or diseases originating from bacteria or viruses. Researchers explored how evolution impacted the mutation of these pathogens, and their findings could lead to the development of evolutionarily designed drugs. The results were published March 24 in Cell Reports.  Discuss
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