As per the figures disclosed by the National Health Ministry (NHM), India has witnessed 400,000 excess deaths in April and May, 2021 in comparison with April and May 2020. And the surge in COVID-19, cases in Europe, the US and neighbouring countries reveals that the coronavirus is still amidst us and is thriving well! Since December 2019, with more than 188 million confirmed cases and more than 4.0 million deaths worldwide, as recorded on July 16, 2021, COVID-19 has severely disrupted human life, and we still don’t know for sure. The reasons why COVID-19 drastically affects some people, but the majority recovers whilst remaining largely asymptomatic. ‘How long will the immunity acquired after infection or the vaccination driven adaptive immunity be able to save us from reinfection?’ is a million-dollar question.
Why is SARS-CoV-2 so contagious?
Expedited sequencing of the viral genome, which proved that SAR-CoV-2 is similar to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), the infection broke out in China between 2002 and 2004, also provided a clear understanding about the nature and mechanism by which SARS-CoV-2 spikes bind with Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme-2 (ACE-2), 10-20 times more effective than its predecessor, and how it gets quickly detached with the help of a protease allowing the lipid layer to fuse with the cell membrane and releasing its RNA into the host cell. Once inside, the virus replicates by simply hijacking the machinery of the host cells, thus spreading further and infecting more cells and eventually other organs, the transmission contaminating the environment and thus infecting more people. It’s again the understanding of the spike glycoproteins, which formed the basis for developing novel vaccines, in record times.
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How Tech Innovations Impact Cardiac Care
Cardiac care has seen a transformation over the years with technology playing an important role. Armed with Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), cardiac care providers, with the right technology, have received the right impetus to revolutionise treatment mechanisms. Let us delve into the new technologies which the industry is offering to mankind and decipher the way forward.
Mynvax Offers ‘Warm Vaccine' For COVID-19
Biotech startup Mynvax, incubated at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bengaluru, has developed heat-tolerant COVID-19 vaccine formulations.
“R&D outsourcing has become a ‘must have' than ‘good-to have' strategy”
Aragen Life Sciences (formerly GVK BIO), a leading contract research and development organisation headquartered in Hyderabad, is marking its transition to a new brand identity in its 20th year. Established in 2001, the company is poised for growth in the outsourced discovery, development, and manufacturing services sector across both large and small molecule platforms with new investments and collaborations. In conversation with BioSpectrum, Manni Kantipudi, Chief Executive Officer, Aragen Life Sciences, Hyderabad reveals more about the company’s recent rebranding and growth plans. Edited excerpts;
Premas Biotech to commercialise VLP vaccine tech against Delta variant
Gurugram-based Premas Biotech has signed a licensing deal with Oravax Medical for the development and commercialisation of its virus-like-particle COVID-19 vaccine technology.
SARS-CoV-2: A Biochemical Treatise on its Past, Present & Future
The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic is unprecedented but equally unprecedented is the contribution of scientists who have helped us in understanding the mechanisms by which it infects human beings and also, developing a variety of vaccines to protect the masses, in a year’s time, which can be called truly groundbreaking. This article gives an overview of the progress made by scientists around the world working round the clock in developing an understanding of the SARS-CoV-2 evolution and COVID-19 disease pathogenesis, and also makes an attempt to suggest the possible ways of coping with this pandemic if we have to co-exist with it forever!
Merck launches Pergoveris Pen for fertility treatment in India
Merck Specialties, the healthcare business of Merck in India, has launched Pergoveris Pen for advanced infertility treatment in India.
GUNG-HO PHARMA R&D INVESTMENTS SURPASS $3B
While the pharmaceutical industry helped combat COVID-19, from R&D actions on potential treatment strategies to balancing the medicines supply chain in the time of crisis, it struggled to maintain the natural market flow. As a result, many pharma companies had to abort some of their ongoing R&D investment plans. However for FY20-21, the average R&D expenses constituted 7.2 per cent of the total revenues of the pharma companies, with Lupin, Alembic Pharma and Dr. Reddy’s spending more than others. The cumulative R&D expenditure of the leading 10 pharma companies has been around Rs 10,627 crore ($1.43 billion) in the previous fiscal. This figure eventually reaches an approximate amount of Rs 22,500 crore ($3.03 billion) after considering the cumulative expenditure by other small and medium players of the India pharma industry.
Glenmark ties up with SaNOtize to commercialise COVID-19 nasal spray
Mumbai-based Glenmark Pharmaceuticals and Canadian biotech firm SaNOtize Research & Development Corporation
CEPI prioritises Rift Valley fever vax
Sep 01, Norway-based Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) has signed an implementing partner agreement with Integrum Scientific (US) as part of its ongoing efforts to combat Rift Valley fever (RVF)—one of its priority diseases with epidemic potential.
3D printing moulds healthcare innovations
Pharmaceuticals, bio-medicine, aviation, and automobiles industries have rapidly adopted 3D printing over the years, worldwide, to develop new solutions and prototypes. It is also helping many industries, healthcare, in particular, increase productivity. Despite all its advantages, 3D printing technology is currently posing a number of challenges in the market such as initial costs, limitation to the metals and plastics used for 3D printing, lack of policy standardisation, etc.
Enhanced protocols for aircraft cleanliness protect the health of customers and crews.
A Lost Chance to Track Covid?
A study of the trade in live wild animals at Wuhan wet markets stayed unpublished for more than a year
Double Dose: Gain Of Dysfunction
How an alliance of crunchies and conservatives could help bring on the next pandemic
CHINA'S COVID COVER-UP WASN'T THE FIRST!
Bombshell virus report reveals deadly pattern going back decades
A Vaccine for all Occasions
Scientists are developing a “universal vaccine” that would protect against anything the coronavirus can throw at us and maybe even the common cold.
A NOSE FOR COVID-19
Central Florida Company Trains Canines to Detect Virus
Gain Of Function
How much risk of an accidental pandemic is too much?
The Covid-19 Manhattan Project
Never have so many researchers trained their minds on a single problem in so brief a time. Science will never be the same.
Home is Where the Heart Is
Arinze Stanley is Staying in Nigeria
how to heal a building
open the windows. stop the obsessive sanitizing. spread some good germs around. a building, like a person, is only as healthy as its microbiome