Father urges people to get vaccinated after daughter, 29, dies of COVID-19
A technology developed at Vanderbilt University Medical Center has led to the discovery of an “ultra-potent” monoclonal antibody against multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, including the delta variant.
The antibody has rare characteristics that make it a valuable addition to the limited set of broadly reactive antibody therapeutic candidates, researchers reported Sept. 15 in the journal Cell Reports.
The technology, called LIBRA-seq, has helped speed up the discovery of antibodies that can neutralize SARS-CoV-2. It also enables researchers to screen antibodies against other viruses that have not yet caused human disease but which have a high potential of doing so.
Drug repurposing is no quick fix for developing new treatments for disease, including COVID-19, and there are inherent dangers and pitfalls with translating drugs such as chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, ivermectin and similar compounds to treat COVID-19, say a team of experts.
The potential challenges and opportunities with drug repurposing are highlighted in a paper authored by a cross-section of Australian drug discovery and translation experts, including from the pharmaceutical industry, academia, and investors.
The paper, published in Science Translational Medicine, comes as drug repurposing has been thrust into the global spotlight as a potential way to fast-track new treatments for COVID-19.
While there is an assumption that drug repurposing was an efficient and effective way to deliver new drugs to the market, the study's lead author and former Global Head and Vice-President of Hematology/Oncology Research at Amgen, California, and current co-founder of Boston-based Parthenon Therapeutics, Dr. Glenn Begley, said there were only a few examples of successful drug
repurposing by academic groups.
Dr. Begley said the regulatory process still requires a clear commercial value proposition, defined intellectual property, an established understanding of how the drug is metabolized, as well as rigorous preclinical and clinical studies to define dose and schedule in the new indication.
"Drug repurposing is seldom as trivial as taking the approved drug and performing a clinical trial in a different disease using the same dose and dosing schedule," Dr. Begley said.
"It requires new preclinical safety and efficacy studies, appropriately designed phase I and 2 studies, regulatory authority oversight and typically the establishment of new IP. The failure rate, costs and time involved is similar for new drug development. It's no quick fix."
FDA authorizes Pfizer’s Covid-19 booster for people over 65 or at high risk
U.S. COVID-19 daily deaths increase to highest level since March: CNN
Public health campaigners on Monday pressed President Joe Biden to do far more to help poor countries vaccinate their populations against COVID-19, including by investing heavily in global manufacturing, pushing harder for a suspension of patents, and facilitating the transfer of key technology.
While applauding as "admirable" Biden's effort to ensure that 70% of the world's population is vaccinated within the next year, more than 60 advocacy organizations warned in a new letter that such an objective will remain out of reach unless he takes ambitious action to "ensure equitable vaccine distribution."
"We cannot 'donate' our way to safety," the letter reads. "The massive global shortage of highly effective vaccines can only be addressed by increasing production. As of this week, just over 3% of people in low-income countries, many of whom are also facing devastating surges from deadly variants, have received any dose of COVID-19 vaccine."
Signatories to the letter include Public Citizen, Health GAP, National Nurses United, the Africa Faith and Justice Network, the Bangladesh Krishok Federation, Médecins Sans Frontières USA, and dozens of others.
In their letter on Monday, the diverse coalition of advocacy groups specifically called on Biden to:
"Short of such action," the groups warned, "the pandemic will continue its devastation, driven by a lack of political will to truly engage in a global, collective effort to protect everyone, everywhere."
- Support the inclusion of $25 billion for global vaccine manufacturing in Democrats' emerging budget reconciliation package;
- Use the Defense Production Act to force U.S.-based vaccine manufacturers such as Pfizer and Moderna to share vaccine technology and know-how with low-income countries;
- Quickly redistribute excess vaccine doses to poor and middle-income nations; and
- Actively pushing U.S. allies such as Germany, the United Kingdom, and Canada to support a temporary suspension of intellectual property protections for coronavirus vaccines and therapeutics.
death threats against hospital staff is probably a good enough reason to ban that guy from their whole network. they should just call the cops to remove him if he ever sets foot on any of their properties:
She thought of the abuse she’d received from one man’s angry family members, who had berated her for not treating him with ivermectin, a deworming drug falsely promoted as a cure in conspiracy circles but that the FDA has warned against using in COVID patients. She thought of how police had to remove the man’s family after his son-in-law told her, “If you don’t do this, I have a lot of ways to get people to do something, and they’re all sitting in my gun safe at home.”
Her eyes welling with tears, she took a selfie and sent it to her fiancé: “It’s going like this,” she wrote.
Like other medical workers in her state, Carvalho is exhausted and exasperated. Idaho currently has the lowest vaccination rate in the country, and the number of vaccine doses administered hasn’t been climbing significantly — but infections have. As of Saturday, there were 686 patients hospitalized in the state with COVID, 180 of them in ICUs. That’s hundreds more than what flooded hospitals during the previous surge in December 2020, before safe and effective vaccines were widely available.
Carvalho and her colleagues cannot fathom how they’ve ended up in this situation. She has anger — certainly — but that requires too much energy. She’s mostly just sad and burned out.
“I think it’s just kind of a hopeless feeling,” she told BuzzFeed News after finishing her shift on Tuesday evening. “Last year at this time, I was very anxious about COVID, and I was just hoping and hoping for the day when we’d have a vaccine. It never occurred to me that there would be a day when we have a vaccine, and I’m actually more anxious now because we have something that can really prevent this and people aren’t taking it.”
Currently, 50 of the 51 COVID patients in ICUs part of the St. Luke's Health System — a chain covering southeastern Idaho, eastern Oregon, and northern Nevada — are unvaccinated. Hospitalizations have soared. In July, there were 33 patients with COVID across all the St. Luke's hospitals. This week, there were 289. Currently, more than two-thirds of all patients in St. Luke’s facilities are being treated for the same virus, Jim Souza, St. Luke’s chief physician executive, told reporters in an online briefing on Tuesday.
"That’s an unprecedented event in modern medicine,” he said.
If things truly reach their worst in Idaho, the crisis standards guide doctors in triaging which patients receive care and which won’t. They involve a complex calculation of health factors in order to save the most lives possible. In the event of a tie, doctors may have to resort to a lottery system. Hospitals may even institute a universal do-not-resuscitate order for all patients who suffer cardiac arrest — although this has not yet happened in Idaho and would never apply to children.
Susie Keller, the CEO of the Idaho Medical Association, told BuzzFeed News she’s been hearing nightmarish stories from members who are beginning to confront these rationing decisions — about who gets an ICU bed, a COVID patient or someone with cardiac arrest.
“It’s not a sudden nightmare. It’s a nightmare we’ve seen coming, and our physicians have been warning about this,” Keller said. “We have not yet hit our peak.”
On Wednesday night, Sean Hannity interviewed former U.S. Army Lt. Col. Paul Douglas Hague, who said he resigned his commission after the Department of Defense mandated service members be vaccinated against Covid-19.
Hague’s wife posted his resignation letter on Twitter earlier this month. In it, he said, “First, and foremost, I am incapable of subjecting myself to the unlawful, unethical, immoral, and tyrannical to sit still and allow a serum to be injected into my flesh against my will and better judgment.”
Hague went on to say the Covid vaccine hasn’t been adequately studied, saying, “I cannot and will not contribute to the fall of this great nation and its people.”
He alleged the mandate is part of a “Marxist takeover of the military and United States government at their upper echelons.”
U.S. service members are required to receive a slew of vaccines, which Hague noted had been administered to him. But in the world war against Covid, for him, the vaccine mandate was a bridge too far.
The Lt. Col. resigned just two years shy of receiving a pension, which Hannity noted.
Hospitals across Montana are being overwhelmed by unvaccinated patients as the state's death toll rises and county health officials keep resigning as backlash by Covid-deniers has required police to intervene.
On Friday, Sanders County Health Officer Nick Lawyer resigned after being blamed for the death of a man's wife who did not receive Ivermectin and Hydroxychloroquine.
Only days later, on Tuesday, Butte-Silver Bow announced Health Officer Karen Sullivan would be retiring.
Another resignation of one of Montana's 56 health officers was announced only the next day.
"On Wednesday afternoon at their quarterly meeting, The Blaine County Board of Health accepted the resignation of Health Officer and Public Health Nurse Jana McPherson-Hauer, effective Friday, October 15th," Josh Margolis reported for Hi-Line Today.
Edited by amor de cosmos, 23 September 2021 - 09:27 AM.