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COVID-19

Korea approves Celltrion’s Phase 1 trial of COVID-19 antiviral antibody treatment

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Omari Bernard

Celltrion Group has announced that the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety has approved the company’s Investigational New Drug application for a Phase 1 trial for their coronavirus antiviral antibody treatment candidate.

Celltrion has already begun trials of the treatment, called CT-P59, in July following their clinical trial authorisation application from the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

Top Ten most popular articles on Pharmafile.com this week

The top 10 news stories this week are focused on coronavirus vaccines and treatments, as China is set to move ahead with human testing of a potential vaccine that has been created using insect cells, while AstraZeneca has started a clinical trial of its antibody treatment designed to prevent and also treat symptoms of coronavirus.

Genexine’s cytokine drug effective in treating coronavirus patients, new study suggests

U.S. Army photo by Jason W. Edwards

Genexine’s recent clinical trial investigating how its cytokine therapy treats coronavirus has proven effective, according to the company. 

FDA approves Abbott’s rapid portable COVID-19 test

The FDA has given emergency clearance for Abbott’s portable COVID-19 test that it will sell for just $5. 

The company’s BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card test can give results within 15 minutes and is designed to be administered in places like schools and workplaces to carry out mass testing. However, the test still needs a nasal swab to be administered by a medical professional. 

75-year-old Nottinghamshire woman may be first known British victim of coronavirus

Photo by mattbuck

A 75-year-old woman from Nottinghamshire is thought to be the first British case and victim of COVID-19.

She tested positive for the virus on 21 February, and was admitted to Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham and later died on 3 March. Her death came two days earlier than the first official death from the virus.

The first British case of COVID-19 was previously believed to be a man from Surrey who tested positive on 28 February.

Pharmafile.com's weekly COVID-19 news round-up

Photo by the CDC

In COVID-19 news this week, China is set to move ahead with human testing of a potential coronavirus vaccine that has been created using insect cells while Australia has signed its first deal to secure doses of a potential vaccine for its citizens, inking a partnership with AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford.

Man in Hong Kong reinfected with COVID-19 four months after initially contracting the virus

Photo by Andrii Makukha

A man in Hong Kong has been reinfected with the coronavirus, stoking fears that immunity to the virus may be short-lived.

While there have been many speculated cases of reinfection, this is the first to be confirmed by a laboratory. Scientists at the University of Hong Kong carried out genetic sequencing to establish that it was a second episode of the virus which was caused by a slightly different strain. It had been previously hoped that an immune system that had fought the virus once could halt it upon second contact, even if the strain was slightly different.

FDA grants emergency authorisation for coronavirus plasma treatment

The FDA has issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for convalescent plasma to treat patients with COVID-19.

The regulatory body has said that over 70,000 patients have already been given the treatment which uses the blood of people who have recovered from coronavirus.

At a White House press briefing on Sunday, President Donald Trump said: “Today I am pleased to make a truly historic announcement in our battle against the virus that will save countless lives. Today's action will dramatically increase access to this treatment.”

Top Ten most popular articles on Pharmafile.com this week

The top 10 news stories this week again focus on coronavirus vaccines and treatments, as professor Alexander Chuchalin has quit the Russian Health Ministry’s ethics council due to the quick approval process for the country’s coronavirus vaccine, while President Donald Trump reportedly wants to approve Phoenix Biotechnology’s oleandrin as a coronavirus treatment, despite a lack of evidence for its effectiveness.

Australia signs first COVID-19 vaccine deal for 25 million doses of AstraZeneca/Oxford University candidate

Image credit: Phil Whitehouse, https://www.flickr.com/photos/philliecasablanca/2050531524

Australia has signed its first deal to secure doses of a potential COVID-19 vaccine for its citizens, inking a partnership with AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford for their jointly developed candidate known as ChAdOx1.

The deal promises “early access for every Australian”, securing 25 million doses for an undisclosed price, comfortably covering the country’s 25 million population.

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