Pfizer’s antiviral Paxlovid is a major advancement potentially for all coronaviruses, says Gagandeep Kang

Gagandeep Kang Besides 89% efficacy in preventing death and hospitalisation in specific groups that have high risk of progressing to severe disease when treatment is initiated within five days of symptoms showing up, Pfizer's antiviral against SARS-CoV-2 virus has been found to limit damage to lung tissue in human cells and mouse models of SARS-CoV-2. … Continue reading Pfizer’s antiviral Paxlovid is a major advancement potentially for all coronaviruses, says Gagandeep Kang

SARS-CoV-2 virus less likely to develop resistance to molnupiravir: Gagandeep Kang

Preliminary data, which is yet to be peer-reviewed, shows molnupiravir can reduce risk of hospitalisation or death by 50% in non-hospitalised adult patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 disease. The trial included only those older than 60 years and have at least one comorbidity. On October 11, just 10 days after Merck announced via a press release … Continue reading SARS-CoV-2 virus less likely to develop resistance to molnupiravir: Gagandeep Kang

Indian scientists divided over restricted use approval for Covaxin

While some scientists have raised concerns about granting restricted use approval to Covaxin even in the absence of efficacy data, four-dozen scientists have in a statement slammed them saying “reprehensible utterances are causing huge credibility crisis for the Indian scientific community”. Apparently, questioning the approval process by the Indian regulator is seen as being anti-Indian … Continue reading Indian scientists divided over restricted use approval for Covaxin

I would not take Covaxin without efficacy data: Gagandeep Kang

Serum's Covishield and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin are examples of atmanirbhar (self-reliance) but have an element of non-Indian science — and at least to me that is fine, says Dr. Gagandeep Kang. Though Covaxin uses inactivated virus, neutralising antibodies against the spike protein are critical for reinfection. So if Covaxin is based on an old viral … Continue reading I would not take Covaxin without efficacy data: Gagandeep Kang

It makes sense to bring people to the vaccine instead of taking COVID-19 vaccine to people in some settings: Gagandeep Kang

mRNA vaccines for COVID-19, such as the one developed by Moderna, requires ultralow temperature (-70-80 degree C) during storage. India never had this kind of storage requirement and building the infrastructure for ultracold storage requires considerable resources, as it needs not just the freezers, but also uninterrupted power supply, says Dr. Gagandeep Kang. The government … Continue reading It makes sense to bring people to the vaccine instead of taking COVID-19 vaccine to people in some settings: Gagandeep Kang

Human challenge trials will help us design better treatments, vaccines than we can now: Gagandeep Kang

The world's first human challenge trial for a vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 is set to begin in London in January. Human challenge trials for the SARS-CoV-2 virus have many challenges, including producing a strain that is less virulent, but Dr. Gagandeep Kang says such trials can provide information and help design better vaccines than we can do now with conventional trials.

Aptamer-based assay developed for coronavirus detection

Researchers from the Faridabad-based Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI) have developed an Aptamer-based assay for novel coronavirus detection. The assay has 90% sensitivity and 99% specificity. Technology has been transferred to Molbio Diagnostics Pvt Limited, Goa for scale-up. Researchers from the Faridabad-based Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI) have developed an Aptamer … Continue reading Aptamer-based assay developed for coronavirus detection

The vaccine was rapidly synthesised as novel coronavirus sequence was available: Gagandeep Kang

Moderna’s mRNA-1273 is the first vaccine for novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) to enter human trials. This is a novel lipid nanoparticle-encapsulated mRNA vaccine that codes for the full-length prefusion stabilised spike protein. In part, researchers were able to quickly develop the vaccine because of prior studies of related coronaviruses that cause SARS and MERS, says Prof. … Continue reading The vaccine was rapidly synthesised as novel coronavirus sequence was available: Gagandeep Kang

Cheap, filter-based kits developed for TB diagnosis, drug-resistance testing

Three cheap, filter-based kits developed by a multi-institutional team and an industry partner improves the sensitivity of LED fluorescence microscopy by 5%, enable transport of sputum samples at ambient conditions without bio-safe containers and TB drug-resistance testing using molecular methods. To address the TB diagnostic challenges, a multi-institutional team has developed three cost-effective kits that … Continue reading Cheap, filter-based kits developed for TB diagnosis, drug-resistance testing

Cholera bacteria from India show high drug-resistance

The 443 cholera-causing Vibrio cholerae isolates isolated from patients from Kolkata and Delhi show very high drug resistance to 22 antibiotics belonging to nine classes. About 99% of the isolates are resistant to more than two antibiotics, 17% to more than 10 antibiotics, and 7.5% to more than 14 antibiotics. A study of 443 clinical … Continue reading Cholera bacteria from India show high drug-resistance