Genomic mutations can influence disease risk August 21, 2020 -- The reason why some genetically predisposed individuals may or may not develop a disease is rooted in mutations throughout the genome, according to a new study published in Nature Communications on August 20. The researchers explained how this information can be used to improve disease risk estimations in the clinic. Discuss
Cytokines may prevent COVID-19 patients from producing the 'best' antibodies August 20, 2020 -- High levels of some cytokines associated with COVID-19 could prevent long-term antibody responses to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, according to a new study published in Cell on August 19. The findings could explain why immunity to the novel coronavirus does not last long among individuals after they recover from the disease. Discuss
SARS-CoV-2 spike protein hinges like leg joints to seek receptors August 19, 2020 -- New research demonstrates that the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein may be more flexible than previously thought, with hinges similar to leg joints to seek receptors on a host, according to a new article published in Science on August 18. Understanding molecular dynamics of how the spike protein functions could have implications in therapeutic and vaccine design. Discuss
Microbe-based platform aims for sweet spot between biologics and gene therapy August 17, 2020 -- A microbe-based therapeutics platform that has been in development for nearly 30 years is gaining traction for the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The company that is developing the platform, Precigen ActoBio, is advancing a lead candidate through clinical trials with the long-term goal of finding a sweet spot between biologics and gene therapies. Discuss
Early trials show potential of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine August 14, 2020 -- Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is making progress on BNT162b1, a COVID-19 vaccine candidate that is undergoing development and for which the U.S. government has secured access to 300 million doses in 2021. The results of the phase I/II clinical trials were published in Nature on August 12. Discuss
Sharing is caring: Why COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers must collaborate August 13, 2020 -- Sharing knowledge between competitors will be key for establishing the manufacturing capacity needed to produce billions of COVID-19 vaccines in coming months. Such collaboration could change the way that innovation and competition are viewed in the biopharmaceutical industry, according to a policy forum published in Science on August 13. Discuss
Thermo Fisher's acquisition of Qiagen falls short August 13, 2020 -- Thermo Fisher Scientific has terminated its acquisition of Qiagen after the company was unable to secure the number of shares needed to proceed with the deal. The collapse of the deal kills what would have been one of the largest acquisitions in the scientific and lab instrument space so far this year.