Tag Archives: coronavirus

COVAXIN

What is Covaxin?

It has been developed by the company Bharat Biotech India (BBIL) in collaboration with ICMR’s National Institute of Virology (NIV). It is an “inactivated” vaccine — one made by using particles of the Covid-19 virus that were killed, making them unable to infect or replicate. Injecting particular doses of these particles serves to build immunity by helping the body create antibodies against the dead virus, according to BBIL.

News about Covaxin

Earlier this week, Bharat Biotech announced that it had developed a vaccine against the novel coronavirus, named Covaxin, together with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune. The company had also received permission from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to begin human trials, expected to commence in August.

Bharat Biotech is a reputed drug manufacturer that delivers four billion doses around the world for infections like rotavirus, hepatitis, Zika, Japanese encephalitis and others. However, its claim that Covaxin is indigenous – advanced, among others, by managing director Krishna Ella – raises some doubts.

According to Bharat Biotech, Covaxin is an inactivated vaccine developed from an Indian strain of the novel coronavirus isolated by NIV. No further information has been provided, especially about the nature of the vaccine or how it was developed. There have been no prior announcements either about when the process of developing such a vaccine was begun.

ICMR transferred the strain NIV had isolated to Biotech Bharat on May 9. The company published its press release on June 29. So there were only 50 days in between, during which time the company should have developed the inactivated vaccine, conducted preclinical animal trials (with mice and hamsters, according to the company), and sent its reports to be evaluated and approved by DCGI. Although ICMR had promised to expedite the process, animal trials with mice typically take at least three months to conclude.

A related issue is that animal trials for COVID-19 can only be conducted with hACE2 transgenic mice, as ‘normal’ mice can’t get infected with the novel coronavirus. These mice need to be shipped from the US, Europe or China.

These issues therefore raise concerns about whether Bharat Biotech could really have proceeded to the human-trials phase of vaccine development within only 50 days of receiving the inactivated virus from NIV.

Collaboration with US company

Bharat Biotech has currently invested in two other vaccines: CoroFlu in collaboration with FluGen Inc. and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an inactivated rabies vaccine vehicle for coronavirus proteins developed along with Matthis Schnell, director of the Jefferson Vaccine Centre (JVC), Pennsylvania. The latter is of interest.

On May 20, Bharat Biotech announced its collaboration with JVC as well as the license it had received to conduct clinical trials, and to produce and deliver vaccines in 80 countries excluding the US, Europe and Japan. On April 7, JVC announced a promising vaccine candidate named Coravax.

Coravax uses an inactivated rabies vaccine to carry the spike protein of the novel coronavirus. The spike protein attaches to a host cell and causes an infection, so experts expected this vaccine to trigger a good immune response on the body’s part. Schnell corroborated this response following preliminary tests with animals. Schnell added that JVC would need one more month to complete follow-up studies.

Bharat Biotech hasn’t shared any technical details of Covaxin. But based on what we already know, there appears to be room for the possibility that Covaxin is Coravax by another name – and by another viral strain. And even if the vaccine is wholly indigenous, the timelines for the animal trials don’t line up.

When does ICMR plan to launch it?

Aiming to make it available for public use by August 15, Bhargava wrote to the 12 trial sites to ensure “all” clinical trials were conducted by then. While BBIL’s application with the Clinical Trials Registry of India (CTRI) shows it plans to complete enrolment of trial participants by July 13, Bhargava has directed the sites to complete enrolment by July 7.

Is this even achievable?

A vaccine usually goes through three phases of human trials. The Central Drugs Standard Control Organization has given approvals for phase I and II trials so far. According to details from CTRI, BBIL in its application estimated phase I and II trials to take a year and three months, including at least a month for phase I alone.

Experts have questioned how all three phases can be concluded within a month and a half. “I would find it very surprising if it is done. Even the most ambitious companies in the world that are in more advanced stages of development for their Covid-19 vaccines have a longer time-frame. Even having all the trial results, with safety and efficacy data, by August 15 is difficult. This raises several questions,” said Dr Anant Bhan, Researcher, Global Health, Bioethics and Health Policy.

While vaccine trials can be fast-tracked, it still takes over a year to launch the product, experts said. In a pandemic, emergency-use approval can be given if data from the first two trial phases is compelling enough, said an expert on condition of anonymity. This would allow the launch without the third phase being conducted, but this approval would likely be given with riders to submit additional data and adverse event reports.

“Different Types Of Tests Used To Detect Coronavirus”

Every day we are interacting with a surging number of cases across the country, every day we add another significant number of digits in confirmed cases, Active cases and total deaths and tolls are growing in each segment with a huge margin. today means ( on 02 July 2020 ) we have significant Number of Covid-19 reported cases that are terrifying increasing every minute rapidly Confirmed cases are (607416) Total Deaths are (17880) and Active Cases are (228410) Country had reached more then half a million cases and tolls are growing day by day. In this Scenario of helplessness where we can only witness the increasing tolls there is a big challenge for the Health Ministry to conducted tests all across the country or where the situations are worse or the possibility of vulnerability is high, and with this one of the most important parameter is to choose the type of test. There are a lot of discussions going on regarding the reliability of the test, cost of the test.

What kind of test one should prefer? What is the Reliability of the Test?

Picking the test is an important criterion or choosing between risk and safety. You are infected by Coronavirus or not how would you know it? Definitely, your body will respond to your symptoms will tell the story but conformity will be determined by a ‘Right test’. Undergoing a reliable authentic and preferred test is very crucial because it is the only test that determines the are you positive or negative hence choosing a test is a question of choosing life and death. There are criteria, parameters, and factors that categorized the kind of tests. Mainly there are three types of tests available or carried out to detect the presence of coronavirus or determines whether a person is tested positive or negative, they are Anti-Body test, RT-PCR test, and ICMR test.

Anti-Body Test: Antibody tests are also known as a serological test, they are carried out on a large scale throughout the country because of cheap availability. An antibody test is carried out to detect the presence of coronavirus by quantifying the number of Antibodies produced within the body. this test does not detect directly the presence of coronavirus a conclusion regarding the infection is measured by quantity of antibodies produced by immune system. Blood samples are taken and used to determine the number of antibodies released. this test is carried out to detect the presence of Immunoglobulin M and G. but overall this test is not reliable, it has not that preciseness and competence to detect the presence of coronavirus hence it is not reliable and data produced on the basis of Antibody test is not up to the mark.

RT-PCR TEST: According to a statement by the Health Ministry of India RT-PCR, the Real-Time reverse transcription-polymerase chain is a gold standard frontline test that can detect the presence of Coronavirus or whether a person is positive or not. this method of testing involves taking a Nasal / throat swab from the infected one, and from this sample RNA ribonucleic acid is extracted which is also the genetic code of Coronavirus patter of the genetic code obtained from RNA of the sample taken from the patient is undergone for matching if Pattern Of genetic code of patient match with the pattern of coronavirus Patient announced to be Positive or infected from Coronavirus. this method of testing is more reliable accurate, but this method requires machines for extracting RNA, skilled Lab technicians, chemicals, and best experts who can carry this test with preciseness, and all this makes this test expensive it costs about 4500 Rupees per test. Overall RT-PCR test is a reliable and accurate test for the detection of coronavirus.

ICMR TEST : This involves usage of the tests discussed above Antibody test and RT-PCR test both. According to the availability consumption and Number of infected Patients.

SHAILAJA TEACHER: corona virus slayer

Kerala, which recorded India’s first three corona virus cases,has been successful in flattening the curve of new infections. The southern state has reported 3,451 cases, of which 1809 patients were discharged after receiving treatment . Twenty-two deaths have been recorded so far in Kerala.

Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja popularly known as Shailaja Teacher has been hailed for effectively control the Covid-19 curve in the state , at a time when the entire country was devasted by the disease. Kerala was apparently successful to fight with the virus because of timely intervention by the Minister.

Recently she was honoured by the United Nations during the celebration of Public Service Day for tackling the Covid-19 pandemic Effectively .The UN observed Public Service Day on 23 rd June to honour those who risking their life and health to deliver essential public services amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

K.K SHAILAJA attending UN Public Service Day Celebration

the event was held at virtual platform and saw the digital participatation of UN secretary General Antonio Guterres and other top dignitaries

CORONAVIRUS VACCINE DEVELOPMENTS

What is coronavirus?

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment.  Older people and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

The best way to prevent and slow down transmission is be well informed about the COVID-19 virus, the disease it causes and how it spreads. The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes, so it’s important that you also practice respiratory etiquette.

At this time, there are no specific vaccines or treatments for COVID-19. However, there are many ongoing clinical trials evaluating potential treatments. So sooner or later, we are going to come up with a permanent solution for this virus too.

Vaccine developments

With confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide surpassing 9 million and continuing to grow, scientists are pushing forward with efforts to develop vaccines and treatments to slow the pandemic and lessen the disease’s damage. Some of the earliest treatments will likely be drugs that are already approved for other conditions, or have been tested on other viruses.

As of May 8, two medications had received emergency use authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA): the antiviral remdesivir and a drug used to sedate people on a ventilator.

The FDA issued a EUA in March for the antimalaria drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, but later revoked it after studies showed that they’re unlikely to be effective in treating COVID-19.

EUA allows doctors to use these drugs to treat people with COVID-19 even before the medications have gone through the formal FDA approval process. These drugs are still being tested in clinical trials to see whether they’re effective against COVID-19. This step is needed to make sure the medications are safe for this particular use and what the proper dosage should be.

It could be months before treatments are available that are known to work against COVID-19. It could be even longer for a vaccine. But there are still other tools we can use to reduce the damage done by the new coronavirus, also known as SARS-CoV-2.

Antivirals

Remdesivir: Developed a decade ago, this drug failed in clinical trials against Ebola in 2014. But it was found to be generally safe in people. Research with MERS, a disease caused by a different coronavirus, showed that the drug blocked the virus from replicating. The drug is being tested in many COVID-19 clinical trials around the world. This includes studies in which remdesivir is being administered alongside other drugs, such as the anti-inflammatory drug baricitinib. The drug is also being tested in children with moderate to severe COVID-19. In late April, the drug’s manufacturer, Gilead Sciences, announced one of its trials had been “terminated” due to low enrollment. Gilead officials said the results of that trial had been “inconclusive” when it was ended.

A few days later, the company announced that preliminary data from another trial of remdesivir overseen by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) had “met its primary endpoint.” Gary Schwitzer, founder of HealthNewsReview.org, though, said the researchers changed the primary endpoint 2 weeks before Fauci’s announcement. Schwitzer compared that to moving football goalposts closer to make it easier to get a touchdown. At the same time, another study published in The Lancet reported that participants in a clinical trial who took remdesivir showed no benefits compared to people who took a placebo.

Despite the conflicting results, the FDA issued an order on May 1 for the emergency use of remdesivir. In early June, federal officials announced their supply of remdesivir will run out by the end of June. Gilead is ramping up production, but it’s unclear how much of the drug will be available this summer.

Arbidol: This antiviral was tested along with the drug lopinavir/ritonavir as a treatment for COVID-19. Researchers reported in mid-April that the two drugs didn’t improve the clinical outcomes for people hospitalized with mild to moderate cases of COVID-19.

EIDD-2801: This drug was created by scientists at a nonprofit biotech company owned by Emory University. Research in mice has shown that it can reduce replication of multiple coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2.

Pharmaceutical company Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics LP signed an agreement in May to develop this drug. It’s already being tested in a clinical trial in the United Kingdom. Unlike remdesivir, EIDD-2801 can be taken orally, which would make it available to a larger number of people.

Favipiravir: This drug is approved in some countries outside the United States to treat influenza. Some reports from China suggest it may work as a treatment for COVID-19. These results, though, haven’t been published yet. Japan, where the medication is made, is sending the drug to 43 countries for clinical trial testing in people with mild or moderate COVID-19. Canadian researchers are testing to see whether the drug can help fight outbreaks in long-term care homes.

Kaletra: This is a combination of two drugs — lopinavir and ritonavir — that work against HIV. Clinical trials are being done to see whether it also works against SARS-CoV-2. One small study published May 4 in the journal Med by Cell Press found that lopinavir/ritonavir didn’t improve outcomes in people with mild or moderate COVID-19 compared to those receiving standard care.

Another study, published May 7 in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that the drug combination wasn’t effective for people with severe COVID-19. But another study found that people who were given lopinavir/ritonavir along with two other drugs — ribavirin and interferon beta-1b — took less time to clear the virus from their body. This study was published May 8 in The Lancet.

Merimepodib (VX-497): This drug developed by ViralClear Pharmaceuticals Inc. has been shown previously to have antiviral and immune-suppressing effects. It was tested against hepatitis C but had only modest effects.

The company is running a phase II trial of this drug. People with advanced COVID-19 will be randomized to receive either merimepodib with remdesivir, or remdesivir plus a placebo. The company hopes to have results by late summer of this year.

Medical Breakthrough: Can it save life of a Corona-virus patient?

There was a time when everything was going well. Suddenly a pandemic arises all of a sudden. However, the reason for the origin is not apparent yet, and several kinds of research are going on to prepare vaccines to save the lives of people who want to live peacefully. This virus attacks the respiratory system weakening it day by day. However, some may not know, it is treated by keeping the person under 14 days observatory and building up the immune system stronger. But this isn’t an effective solution to cure the problem. It may return or may contaminate others unwittingly. Some people even don’t know if they have it after through an unknown contact with an infected person, this case is asymptomatic, and it can be very harmful.

A woman with mask
Face masks are prevalent these days, and it is a must to wear to protect yourself.

All institutions, offices, public places were closed, people protested, some even panicked, instead of death due to this virus, it can be worse when someone passes away being tensed about it and being in depression. Positive things are happening around the globe like you may have heard about like blood plasma transfusion, hydroxychloroquine, remdesivir in the news. These were some of the methods or medicines that tried to cure the patients and treat them effectively. Now new research says that dexamethasone can be the life-saving drug, being one of the costs capable, was tested in England by giving them 28 days reducing the death rate up to 35 percent, and 20 percent for people requiring oxygen while difficulty in breathing.

A lab.
A laboratory is in search of new medicine.

Dexamethasone is giving as a steroid to reduce inflammation due to several reasons like allergies, asthma, etc. But WHO strictly advises not to use steroids to treat patients while they’re ill as it can slow the time until the virus clears up. Now they’re almost 100 thousand cases reported every day over the past two weeks across the globe. The researches claimed that it could prevent one death among every eight patients if they’re on a ventilator. This finding got observed by a study leader named Peter Horby at the University of Oxford. The earlier attempts like the HIV combo drug lopinavir-ritonavir were commonly given antibiotics for a viral cold, cough: azithromycin was a part of the study. Also, the anti-inflammatory drug tocilizumab were all tested as a cure to treat the patients as a part of the research for more than 11 thousand patients in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

A woman with hope.
A lady is looking out with hope for the situations to come in control.

People should strictly follow as there is no proper cure for the problem. The lockdown is for everyone’s betterment. If you have any symptoms like cold, cough for an extended period, frequent occurring fever, difficulty in breathing, one must quickly approach a doctor. The health conditions of a hospital are worsening day by day. The patients are increasing, but the resources are restricted. There is no proper funding for these problems; people don’t cooperate in this period and become a potential risk for others. They’re cases where the hospital authorities, nurses, attendants, and doctors get attacked; they’re saving your lives, researchers are working day and night to help to restore humanity. The business sector is in the state of falling and collapsing. We need to follow guidelines made, or else it will be challenging to control the problem.