LONDON – A leading scientist behind the University of Oxford’s potential COVID-19 vaccine said on Wednesday the team has seen the right sort of immune response in trials, which have entered the Phase III clinical stage. Speaking at a parliamentary hearing, Sarah Gilbert, professor of vaccinology at the university, said the trial has enrolled 8,000 volunteers for the Phase III of its trial into the vaccine, AZD1222, which was licensed to AstraZeneca. She said she…"Oxford University has seen ‘right sort of immune response’ in potential COVID-19 vaccine trial: scientist"
– Treatments for peanut allergy and Parkinson’s disease are among U.S. drug launches that have been postponed by the COVID-19 pandemic as drugmakers struggle with disruptions to business, a review of filings and interviews with executives show. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved more than 30 new medicines since January, but at least five drugmakers including Bristol Myers Squibb , Sanofi , Neurocrine Biosciences , Endo Pharmaceuticals and Aimmune have changed their launch…"From Parkinson’s to peanut allergy, pandemic puts brakes on new drugs"
SEOUL – South Korea started supplying Gilead’s antiviral drug for the treatment of the novel coronavirus on Wednesday, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said. The first batch of remdesivir will come from Gilead’s donation until July, while the health authorities will negotiate the price for supply after August, KCDC said in a statement."South Korea begins supply of Gilead’s remdesivir – KCDC"
– An experimental coronavirus vaccine developed by Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc showed promise and was found to be safe in an early-stage human trial, the company said on Tuesday. The vaccine, one of the 17 being tested in humans and part of the Trump administration’s “Operation Warp Speed” program, induced “immune responses” in healthy volunteers, Inovio said. Immune responses in the study were measured by the vaccine’s ability to generate binding antibodies, or virus-neutralizing antibodies, and…"Inovio’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate shows promise in small early-stage trial"
WASHINGTON – Republican and Democratic U.S. senators called for a government analysis of foreign influence in the U.S. pharmaceutical supply chain on Tuesday, saying the coronavirus pandemic has exposed an over-reliance on China and other countries for the production of essential drugs. Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren will introduce the U.S. Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Review Act on Tuesday. The bill would require the government to study the effects of relying on…"Exclusive: After pandemic, U.S. senators want review of drug supply chain"
– The federal court of Canada on Monday dismissed a plea by drugmakers challenging the Canadian government’s new regulations aimed at lowering prices of patented drugs that could potentially lead them to lose billions over a decade. The court struck down one part of the new regulation, finding that using certain payments to third parties to determine a drug’s regulated price went beyond the government’s authority, but upheld the bulk of the rules. Canada published…"Canada federal court dismisses drugmakers’ plea challenging drug price rules"
ZURICH – Swiss drugmaker Novartis has withdrawn an application for European approval of its Xiidra dry eye medicine after regulators concluded its effectiveness had not been demonstrated and that its benefits did not outweigh risks. Novartis bought Xiidra from Takeda last year for $3.4 billion up front and $1.9 billion in potential milestone payments to refresh its eye drug portfolio. The drug is approved in the United States where it posted $90 million in first-quarter…"Novartis pulls dry eye drug Xiidra’s bid for approval in Europe"
SEOUL – South Korea has added Gilead’s anti-viral drug remdesivir to its coronavirus treatment guidelines in its first revision of recommendations since the outbreak began and urged caution in the use of the steroid therapy dexamethasone. South Korea, widely praised around the world for its handling of the pandemic without a full lockdown, has reported 12,602 coronavirus cases as of Thursday midnight, with 282 deaths. Remdesivir is designed to hinder certain viruses, including the new…"South Korea backs remdesivir for COVID-19, urges caution with dexamethasone"
NEW YORK – The U.S. government will ship more of Gilead Sciences Inc’s antiviral treatment remdesivir to states experiencing an increase in COVID-19 cases including California, Texas, Florida and Arizona, according to the Department of Health and Human Services’ website. The government reallocated remdesivir to states with increasing cases, White House task force coordinator Deborah Birx said during a briefing on Friday. HHS said on its website that the doses will ship starting Monday and…"U.S. to ship remdesivir to states including California and Texas with rising COVID-19 cases"
LONDON – L’Oreal , the world’s biggest cosmetics company, will remove words referencing “white”, “fair” and “light” from its skin-evening products, a spokeswoman said on Friday, a day after Unilever made a similar announcement in the face of growing social media criticism. Unilever and L’Oreal are two big players in the global market for skin whitening creams used in many Asian, African and Caribbean countries where fair skin is often considered desirable. Unilever, in particular,…"L’Oreal to drop words such as ‘whitening’ from skin products"