Category: health

 

Fact-checking Trump’s closing arguments on covid-19

In the final days of the campaign, President Trump continues to flood the zone with false and misleading claims about the coronavirus pandemic.



a man standing in front of a crowd: (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)


(Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)

Cases have been spiking across the country, while Trump insists “we’re rounding the turn.” The president continues to assert that U.S. infections are rising “because we do more testing than anybody else,” when experts say the main reason is the spreading disease.

In recent interviews, Trump has responded with denials and attacks when journalists Savannah Guthrie of NBC and Lesley Stahl of CBS fact-checked his claims on camera. The president tells crowds that media coverage of the pandemic is meant to damage him politically and “should be an election law violation.”

Here’s a roundup of several coronavirus claims Trump has been repeating in the closing days of the race.

‘Rounding the turn’

“We have made tremendous progress with the China Virus, but the Fake News refuses to talk about it this close to the Election. COVID, COVID, COVID is being used by them, in total coordination, in order to change our great early election numbers. Should be an election law violation!”

Trump tweet, Oct. 26

“We’re rounding the turn. Even without the vaccines, we’re rounding the turn, it’s going to be over.”

— Trump, at a campaign rally in Manchester, N.H., Oct. 25

As of Oct. 28 at 7:50 p.m., the United States has more than 8.8 million reported coronavirus cases and at least 227,000 deaths, according to The Washington Post covid-19 tracker.

The rate of new cases per week began to climb in mid-September and is currently climbing, showing the United States experiencing a third wave of the disease after two earlier surges in 2020. More than 70,000 new cases are reported every day at current levels.

When comparing the 20 countries most affected by the coronavirus, the United States is fifth in deaths per 100,000 people. Only Belgium, Spain, Brazil and Mexico have higher fatality rates, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Swing states

“At some point, we’re turning that corner, and it’s been pretty amazing. Florida had a rough time. Boom. … It’s all the way down. Texas, all the way down. Arizona, great governors, all the way down.”

— Trump, at a campaign rally in Omaha, Oct. 27

“All he [former vice president Joe Biden] does is talk about shutdowns. But forget about him. His Democrat governors: Cuomo in New York, you look at what’s going on in California, you look at Pennsylvania, North Carolina. Democrats — Democrats all. They’re shut down so tight, and they’re dying.”

— Trump, at the presidential debate in Nashville, Oct. 22

“In Pennsylvania, you can’t go to church … can’t go to restaurants.”

— Trump, at a campaign rally in Martinsburg, Pa., Oct. 26

Arizona, Florida and Texas are battleground states governed by Republicans. North Carolina and Pennsylvania, run by Democrats, are also possible swing states in this year’s presidential race.

Trump says the “red” states are

Nicox Granted New Patent for NCX 470, Extending Exclusivity in Europe to 2039

Press Release

Nicox Granted New Patent for NCX 470, Extending Exclusivity in Europe to 2039

 

October 29, 2020 – release at 7:30 am
Sophia Antipolis, France

 

Nicox SA (Euronext Paris: FR0013018124, COX), an international ophthalmology company, today announced that the European Patent Office has granted a formulation patent for NCX 470, extending the European exclusivity to 2039.  The equivalent U.S. patent has already been granted, and NCX 470 is also covered by granted composition of matter patents.

 

Gavin Spencer, Chief Business Officer at Nicox, said: “We are pleased that our formulation patent for NCX 470 has been granted in Europe, following the U.S. grant earlier in the year.  This strengthens our competitive position and provides further protection of this potential best-in-class product candidate for the lowering of intraocular pressure as we continue Phase 3 development and move it towards commercialization.

 

NCX 470, Nicox’s lead clinical product candidate, is a novel second-generation nitric oxide (NO)-donating bimatoprost analog for the lowering of intraocular pressure (IOP) in patients with open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension.  It is currently being evaluated in the Mont Blanc Phase 3 clinical trial which was initiated in the U.S. in June 2020 with top-line results currently expected in Q4 2021.  A second Phase 3 trial, Denali, is expected to start by the end of 2020, and will include clinical sites in both the U.S. and China, with the majority of the patients to be recruited in the U.S. 

 

NCX 470 is exclusively licensed to Ocumension Therapeutics for the Chinese, Korean and South East Asian markets.  The Denali trial is jointly funded by Nicox and Ocumension.

About NCX 470

NCX 470 is a novel, potential best-in-class, second generation nitric oxide (NO)-donating bimatoprost analog in development to reduce intraocular pressure (IOP) in patients with open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension.  Glaucoma is a group of ocular diseases in which the optic nerve is injured, leading to peripheral and, ultimately, central visual field loss and it can eventually lead to blindness if not treated. It is frequently linked to abnormally high IOP (~90% of patients) due to blockage or malfunction of the eye’s aqueous humor drainage system in the front of the eye.  In 2019, worldwide sales of treatments targeting glaucoma were over $6.0 billion out of a $21.9 billion worldwide market for ophthalmic drugs. 

NCX 470 is designed to release both bimatoprost and NO following instillation into the eye.  Bimatoprost, marketed under the brand name LUMIGAN® by Allergan, Inc., is one of the leading products in the class of prostaglandin analogs, the most widely used class of drugs for IOP-lowering in patients with open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension. 

About Nicox

Nicox S.A. is an international ophthalmology company developing innovative solutions to help maintain vision and improve ocular health.  Nicox’s lead program in clinical development is NCX 470, a novel, second-generation nitric oxide-donating bimatoprost analog, for lowering intraocular pressure in patients with glaucoma.  The company is also developing NCX 4251, a proprietary formulation of fluticasone, for acute exacerbations of blepharitis. 

Pakistan orders early closure of businesses

ISLAMABAD — Pakistani authorities have ordered all businesses, including restaurants, wedding halls and markets, be closed after 10 p.m. to contain a coronavirus resurgence that began this month.



A health official from the district office wearing protective gear, walks near a banner showing a precaution against the coronavirus in Seoul, South Korea, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)


© Provided by Associated Press
A health official from the district office wearing protective gear, walks near a banner showing a precaution against the coronavirus in Seoul, South Korea, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)



An Indian family wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus bargain for a ride with an autorickshaw driver in Bengaluru, India, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020. India's confirmed coronavirus caseload surpassed 8 million on Thursday with daily infections dipping to the lowest level this week, as concerns grew over a major Hindu festival season and winter setting in. India's trajectory is moving toward the worst-hit country, the United States, which has over 8.8 million cases. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)


© Provided by Associated Press
An Indian family wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus bargain for a ride with an autorickshaw driver in Bengaluru, India, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020. India’s confirmed coronavirus caseload surpassed 8 million on Thursday with daily infections dipping to the lowest level this week, as concerns grew over a major Hindu festival season and winter setting in. India’s trajectory is moving toward the worst-hit country, the United States, which has over 8.8 million cases. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

Also, authorities in the capital, Islamabad, asked police to arrest anyone violating social distancing rules by not wearing masks at public places.

The government Thursday reported some of its highest single-day totals, more than 900 new cases and 16 deaths. The numbers are almost double those reported some days last month.

Pakistan has reported 311,108 confirmed coronavirus infections, including 6,775 deaths.

___

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— US data Thursday expected to show blowout economic growth in summer, but it’s already fading

— Biden is focusing on COVID-19, while Trump would rather talk about just about anything else

— US health officials are issuing insurance coverage rules anticipating COVID-19 vaccines

— On the road in Mississippi, AP finds a story of love in the time of coronavirus

— Australia’s pandemic travel ban brings family heartbreak and questions about how long it can be justified

Video: Dr. Patel on how the White House should be dealing with the virus outbreak: ‘This should go well beyond what’s standard’ (MSNBC)

Dr. Patel on how the White House should be dealing with the virus outbreak: ‘This should go well beyond what’s standard’

UP NEXT

UP NEXT

— India’s cases surpass 8 million as concerns grow over Hindu festivals, winter and social distancing fatigue

— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

___

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

BEIJING — Officials in the northwestern China region of Xinjiang say they believe they have contained the country’s latest coronavirus outbreak.

Xinjiang reported 23 new confirmed cases Thursday, all involving people who had initially tested positive but displayed no symptoms. It was the second consecutive day in which newly confirmed cases emerged entirely among such people.

Officials say that development appears to show new infections have been curbed in Kashgar prefecture, where the outbreak appeared Saturday. They say all the cases seem to be linked to a garment factory that employs 252 people and has since being sealed off.

More than 4.7 million people in Kashgar have been tested for the virus.

__

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Officials in Anchorage,

The Asia Pacific liposome drug delivery market is expected to reach US$ 1,562.92 million in 2027 from US$ 759.81 in 2019

The market is estimated to grow with a CAGR of 9. 6% from 2020-2027. The growth of the market is attributed to the some key driving factors such as high incidence of chronic diseases amongst the population, an upsurge in need for non-invasive drug delivery solutions, increasing investments in R&D for pharmaceutical companies.

New York, Oct. 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Reportlinker.com announces the release of the report “Asia Pacific Liposome Drug Delivery Market Forecast to 2027 – COVID-19 Impact and Regional Analysis By Product ; Technology ; Application, and Country” – https://www.reportlinker.com/p05978829/?utm_source=GNW
However, high expense involved in the development of drug delivery systems is expected to obstruct the growth of the market to a certain extent during the forecast years.

Liposomes are small sphere-shaped artificial vesicles synthesized from cholesterol and phospholipids. They have multiple layers and a diameter range of 0.01 to 5.0 um. They also have hydrophilic and hydrophobic properties which help liposomes to encapsulate hydrophobic and hydrophilic drugs to be delivered to targeted body site. Liposomes provide an assured system for targeted drug delivery and thereby is the factor influencing the Liposome Drug Delivery market size growth. Liposomes are widely used for enclosing all types of drug molecules such as acyclovir, chloroquine diphosphate, paclitaxel, tropicamide, and cyclosporine. Liposomes are used as a drug carrier for drug therapy for many diseases since they are biodegradable and biocompatible. Also, they have many therapeutic properties like anticancer drugs, genetic materials, proteins, vaccines, macromolecules, and thus can be encapsulated in liposomes.

Research and development (R&D) in liposomal drug delivery systems are increasing across the world due to the increasing prevalence of chronic disease.Drug delivery is the process of dispensing a pharmaceutical compound to attain a therapeutic effect in humans.

Liposomal drug delivery offers multiple advantages such as better pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, enhanced therapeutic efficacy, and decreased toxicity making these delivery systems ideal for patients suffering from various chronic conditions.

Death among the population worldwide has increased due to cancer.The targeted drug delivery system delivers the drug in a controlled manner at a preselected bio site.

Nanotechnology-based delivery systems are making a crucial impact on cancer treatment, and the polymers play a key role in the development of Nano particulate carriers for cancer therapy.Some of the major technological advantages involved in the nanotherapeutic drug delivery systems (NDDS) are prolonged half-life, improved bio-distribution, increased circulation time of the drug, controlled and sustained release of the drug, versatility of route of administration, increased intercellular concentration of the drug, and many more.

The liposomal carriers used in nanotechnology drug delivery systems are likely to experience rapid adoption, which in turn is propelling the market growth.

As per the data provided by, European Society for Medical Oncology, China estimated there were 4.3 million new cancer cases and more than 2.8 million cancer deaths in China in 2015, with lung cancer the most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer death. With high incidences and mortality, cancer is the leading cause of death in China and

US Authorities Warn Of ‘Imminent’ Cyber Threat To Hospitals

US security authorities warned Wednesday of an “imminent cybercrime threat” to hospitals and healthcare providers, urging them to increase their protection.

An advisory released by the FBI and two other government agencies said they had “credible information” that hackers were targeting the healthcare sector using malware, “often leading to ransomware attacks, data theft, and the disruption of healthcare services.”

The threat comes as US hospitals grapple with rising numbers of coronavirus cases, during a pandemic which has so far killed more than 226,000 people in the country.

Ransomware is a type of malicious software used by cybercriminals to encrypt users’ files until a ransom is paid.

Healthcare institutions have been frequent victims of ransomware for several years in the US and globally.

US federal agencies warned hackers were targeting the healthcare sector using malware that can lead to ransomware attacks US federal agencies warned hackers were targeting the healthcare sector using malware that can lead to ransomware attacks Photo: AFP / NICOLAS ASFOURI

Last month, a suspected ransomware attack disrupted patient care at a large chain of hospitals and clinics operating in the United States and Britain.

In 2017, the UK’s national healthcare system was one of the victims in a wave of global ransomware attacks, prompting some of its hospitals to divert ambulances and scrap operations.

The federal agencies urged US healthcare providers to take “timely and reasonable precautions” to protect their networks.

They encouraged healthcare providers to patch their operating systems, software and firmware as soon as possible, and to conduct antivirus and anti-malware scans regularly.

The agencies also recommended changing passwords regularly and using multi-factor authentication.

Copyright AFP. All rights reserved.

Source Article

‘Medicated’ Halloween edibles resembling name-brand candy prompt Indiana State Police warning

Parents in Indiana have been warned to be extra vigilant with any Halloween candy given to their young trick-or-treaters this year.

In a recent Facebook post, the Indiana State Police shared photos of seized holiday edibles featuring packaging that resembles that of actual name brands — but with the word “medicated” printed on the wrapper along with cannabis symbols. 

“Parents, here is an example of what to look for in your child’s Halloween candy this year,” the post reads. “These were seized just this past weekend by one of our Troopers from the Lowell post. While they are packaged and marketed to look like candy, they are not.”

THESE ARE YOUR GENERATION’S FAVORITE HALLOWEEN CANDIES, SURVEY SUGGESTS

“Please thoroughly check all candy and don’t assume it’s ‘OK’ just because it looks ‘OK,’” the post continued. “Thank you to Sgt. Glen Fifield, PIO for the ISP post in Lowell for this information.”

“The post was made as a reminder for parents to take an extra moment to carefully check their children’s Halloween candy because sometimes things aren’t always as they seem,” Capt. Ron Galaviz, chief public information officer for the Indiana State Police, told Fox News, 

Another cause for concern: It remains unclear where these fraudulently branded edibles are manufactured considering neither are legitimate Starburst Gummies or Skittles, which are owned by Mars Wrigley.

THIS IS THE ‘WORST HALLOWEEN CANDY,’ ACCORDING TO NEW SURVEY

“These are not official Mars products as they were not created nor supported by the company,” a company spokesperson confirmed for Fox News. “We’re taking action to protect our consumers and are looking into the entity that is utilizing our brand names on these products.“

In a separate edible-related incident from last year, two children were given THC-infused gummies while trick-or-treating, according to police in Waterford, Conn.

THC is the main active ingredient linked to the psychedelic effects of cannabis – the plant from which marijuana is derived; and its affects could have a negative impact on children, according to The Journal of Pediatric Pharmacology and Therapeutics.

HALLOWEEN CANDY SLIDE MAY HELP TRICK-OR-TREATING STAY SOCIALLY DISTANCED

The journal’s “Cannabinoids in Pediatrics” study found that although there are some clinical uses for THC and CBD for certain medical conditions, children have been increasingly ingesting these compounds by accident in recent years. Researchers who worked on the limited study took into account pediatric hospitalizations and poison control calls made between 2005 and 2011, and suggested the incidents could be connected to the decriminalization of marijuana.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR OUR LIFESTYLE NEWSLETTER

Patients of accidental ingestions experienced symptoms such as lethargy, ataxia and respiratory insufficiency. Only two instances required admission into pediatric intensive care units in that six-year span.

Aside from marijuana-related edibles and any other potential candy tampering, parents and children will have to deal with the coronavirus pandemic this Halloween.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention encourage virtual celebrations over in-person gatherings.

However, for those

Fauci expresses support for national mask mandate for the first time amid record-setting coronavirus infections

Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, said for the first time Wednesday that the United States needs a nationwide mask mandate to combat the rising tide of coronavirus infections. In interviews with CNBC and the Journal of the American Medical Association, Fauci expressed regret that masks haven’t been adopted more widely and suggested that doing so would be key to avoiding another round of shutdowns.



Anthony S. Fauci wearing a suit and tie: Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, testifies during a Senate hearing in September.


© Graeme Jennings/AP
Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, testifies during a Senate hearing in September.

Here are some significant developments:

  • With five days to go before Election Day on Nov. 3, President Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden have crystallized opposing messages on a pandemic that has affected most aspects of American life, including voting.
  • Germany and France announced month-long lockdowns on Wednesday, saying that the resurgence of infections had spiraled out of control.
  • Health officials say the White House called off an investigation into its coronavirus outbreak, while failing to notify people who may have been exposed.
  • The United States has seen a steady increase in coronavirus infections and hospitalizations for almost the entire month of October, with record-high numbers of cases reported in the past week, according to data tracked by The Washington Post. More than 80,000 new cases were recorded on Wednesday, pushing the total number of infections past 8.8 million. At least 227,000 fatalities have been linked to the virus since February.
  • A federal government briefing document obtained by The Washington Post suggests that a traveler could theoretically drive all the way from the Canadian border to northern Mississippi without ever leaving a “hot-spot” county.

Sign up for our coronavirus newsletter | Mapping the spread of the coronavirus: Across the U.S. | Worldwide | Vaccine tracker | Where states reopened and cases spiked | Has someone close to you died of covid-19? Share your story with The Washington Post.

1:31 AM: Fauci expresses support for national mandate for the first time, says he hasn’t spoken to Trump in ‘quite a while’

Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, appeared to call for a nationwide mask mandate for the first time on Wednesday in a series of interviews with the CNBC and the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has historically been reluctant to advocate for such a sweeping policy, telling reporters last month that a national mandate “probably would not work.” But in a Friday interview with CNN, he suggested that the federal government should “maybe” consider instituting one.

Questioned about his apparent hesitation on Wednesday by CNBC’s Shepard Smith, Fauci said that he had hoped “we could pull together as a country” and recognize the importance of mask-wearing without the government getting involved. “We haven’t,” Smith interrupted, before going on to ask Fauci if it was time for a national mandate.

“You know, yes,” Fauci replied. “If we don’t

The Asia Pacific pulmonary devices market is expected to reach US$ 8,196.82 million by 2027 from US$ 3,661.53 million in 2019

The market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 10. 6 % during 2019–2027. The growth of the pulmonary devices market in Asia Pacific is attributed to the increasing prevalence of respiratory diseases and growing number of COVID-19 cases.

New York, Oct. 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Reportlinker.com announces the release of the report “Asia Pacific Pulmonary Devices Market Forecast to 2027 – COVID-19 Impact and Regional Analysis By Type ; Application ; and End User and country” – https://www.reportlinker.com/p05978832/?utm_source=GNW
Factors such as unfavorable reimbursement scenario associated with the pulmonary device are likely to restrain the growth of the market.

Additionally, strategic activities by manufacturers and increasing preference of home care products are likely to fuel the growth of the pulmonary devices market during the forecast period.

Pulmonary or respiratory devices are used to remove mucus and secretions from the respiratory tract. These medical devices are focused on diagnosis, control, treatment, management, and evaluation of the problems associated with respiratory tract.

The higher prevalence of respiratory disorder is mainly due to the decrease in size of the upper airway lumen in aging population.Millions of people suffer from various respiratory diseases; lung diseases are the most common medical conditions.

Smoking, genetic factors, and infections are among the common factors responsible for respiratory diseases. Medical conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic bronchitis, cystic fibrosis, and lung cancer are among the significant public health burdens.

According to a new Tulane University study published in The Lancet, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is widespread in China with 8.6% of the country’s adult population, i.e. almost 100 million people suffering from the chronic lung disease. Additionally, among India’s 1.31 billion people, about 6% of children and 2% of adults have asthma.

The patients suffering with these respiratory disorders commonly experience difficulty in breathing.Thus, the availability of various pulmonary devices has helped improve the survival rates of the patients suffering from abovementioned medical conditions.

The rising demand for various therapeutic devices among patients with respiratory disorders is expected to augment the growth of the market during the forecast period.

Asia Pacific countries are expected to witness massive challenges due to increasing COVID-19 cases.To manage the COVID-19 outbreak and provide efficient treatment to patients in the region, local medical device companies are ramping up the production of alternative respiratory systems in the Asian countries.

The governments in India and Australia, among others are taking initiative to fulfill the demand of oxygen during COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, the development of these solutions is likely to create a positive impact on market growth in the Asian region.

In 2019, the therapeutic devices segment held the largest share in the market and is expected to retain its dominance till 2027.The multi-modal and multi-functional use of therapeutic devices for a wide range of pulmonary diseases is expected to account for the growth of the therapeutic devices segment over the coming years.

On the other hand, the consumables and accessories segment is expected to witness fastest growth

Fauci expresses support for national mask mandate amid record-setting coronavirus infections

Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, said Wednesday that the United States needs a nationwide mask mandate to combat the rising tide of coronavirus infections. In interviews with CNBC and the Journal of the American Medical Association, Fauci expressed regret that masks haven’t been adopted more widely, and suggested that doing so would be the key to avoiding another round of national lockdowns.



Anthony S. Fauci wearing a suit and tie: Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, testifies during a Senate hearing in September.


© Graeme Jennings/AP
Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, testifies during a Senate hearing in September.

Here are some significant developments:

  • Germany and France announced month-long lockdowns on Wednesday, saying that the resurgence of infections had spiraled out of control.
  • Health officials say that the White House called off an investigation into its coronavirus outbreak, while failing to notify people who may have been exposed.
  • The United States has seen a steady increase in coronavirus infections and hospitalizations for almost the entire month of October, with record-high numbers of cases reported in the past week, according to data tracked by The Washington Post. More than 80,000 new cases were recorded on Wednesday, pushing the total number of infections past 8.8 million. At least 227,000 fatalities have been linked to the virus since February.
  • A federal government briefing document obtained by The Washington Post suggests that a traveler could theoretically drive all the way from the Canadian border to northern Mississippi without ever leaving a “hotspot” county.

Sign up for our coronavirus newsletter | Mapping the spread of the coronavirus: Across the U.S. | Worldwide | Vaccine tracker | Where states reopened and cases spiked | Has someone close to you died of covid-19? Share your story with The Washington Post.

1:01 AM: We’re all making choices in the pandemic. Many of us are lying about them.

On a recent Saturday that Rebecca Wolfe said she spent at home, she was strolling along the beach with a man she met on Hinge — but as far as she’s concerned, her mother doesn’t need to know that. Given that health experts emphasize maintaining our distance from each other during the pandemic, Wolfe plans to keep the outing to herself.

Everyone has different levels of risk tolerance, and opinions vary widely about what kinds of activities are acceptable right now: Is outdoor seating at a restaurant okay? What if we wear masks except when we’re eating? How about if we’re the only family there?

We all make our own choices. Many of us are just lying about them.

Read the full story

By: Marisa Iati

12:29 AM: A spice boom has left manufacturers scrambling, and packaging materials can’t keep up

The most sought-after at times have been as costly as precious metals. Their allures set world exploration in motion, fueled sailing expeditions around the Cape of Good Hope, precipitated the establishment of colonies. And now, more than 4,000 years after the initial fervor, we are living through a new spice boom.

The pandemic

Next crop of COVID-19 vaccine developers take more traditional route

By Julie Steenhuysen and Caroline Copley

CHICAGO/BERLIN (Reuters) – The handful of drugmakers dominating the global coronavirus vaccine race are pushing the boundaries of vaccine technology. The next crop under development feature more conventional, proven designs.

The world will need several different vaccines to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, given the sheer size of global need, variations in effects on different populations, and possible limits of effectiveness in the first crop.

Many leading candidates now in final-stage testing are based on new, largely unproven technology platforms designed to produce vaccines at speed. They include messenger RNA (mRNA) technology used by Moderna Inc <MRNA.O> and Pfizer Inc <PFE.N> with partner BioNTech SE <22UAy.F>, and inactivated cold virus platforms used by Oxford University/AstraZeneca Plc <AZN.L>, Johnson & Johnson <JNJ.N> and CanSino Biologics <6185.HK>, whose vaccine has been approved for military use in China.

Merck & Co <MRK.N> in September started testing a COVID-19 vaccine based on a weakened measles virus that delivers genes from the new coronavirus into the body to stimulate an immune response to the coronavirus.

Of these, only the technology offered by J&J and CanSino that use cold viruses as vectors to deliver coronavirus genetic material have ever produced a licensed vaccine – for Ebola.

The next set of candidates – with late-stage trial results expected in the first half of 2021 – are heavily skewed toward approaches that have produced successful vaccines.

Conventional methods include using a killed or inactivated version of the pathogen that causes a disease to provoke an immune response, such as those used to make flu, polio and rabies vaccines.

Also more common are protein-based vaccines that use purified pieces of the virus to spur an immune response. Vaccines against whooping cough, or pertussis, and shingles employ this approach.

French drugmaker Sanofi <SASY.PA> is developing a protein-based COVID-19 vaccine employing the same approach it uses for its Flublok seasonal flu vaccine. Sanofi expects to start the final phase of testing in early December, with approval targeted in the first half of 2021.

While Novavax Inc <NVAX.O> has not yet produced a licensed vaccine, it is using similar purified protein technology and expects to start a late-stage U.S. trial involving 30,000 volunteers in late November.

“Those are more traditional approaches, so we can feel more comfortable that we have a lot of experience with them,” said Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Offit also sees promise in some of the inactivated virus vaccines being developed by Chinese researchers, including Sinopharm’s China National Biotec Group (CNBG), one of the few first-crop developers using a traditional technique.

Other second-wave developers are making vaccines based on virus-like particles (VLPs), which mimic the structure of the coronavirus but contain no genetic material from it.

VLP vaccines can be produced in a variety of different types of cells, including mammal, bacterial, insect, yeast and plant cells. This approach has been used to develop vaccines for hepatitis B and human papillomavirus.

Quebec’s Medicago is