Industry Watch

 Published: November 10, 2021

By: Debbie Bunch

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Dupixent Approved for Kids 6-11

According to Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Sanofi, the FDA has approved Dupixent as an add-on maintenance treatment for children between the ages of six and 11 who suffer from moderate-to-severe asthma that is characterized by an eosinophilic phenotype, or who have oral corticosteroid-dependent asthma. In a study that led to the approval, Dupixent reduced severe asthma attacks by an average of 65% over one year when compared to placebo and improved lung function as early as two weeks after starting treatment, with the improvement sustained for up to 52 weeks. Eighty-one percent of patients reported a clinically meaningful improvement in asthma control at 24 weeks. Read More

PFF Issues Position Statement on Palliative Care

A new position statement from the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) calls for the incorporation of palliative care early on in patients diagnosed with the condition. “Soon after diagnosis, discussions of palliative care may offer reassurance that resources are available for managing symptoms and for future advance care planning” said Dr. Joseph Lasky, chief medical officer for the PFF. “Palliative care can offer peace of mind to patients as they face a life-threatening illness.” The position statement outlines best practices aimed at overcoming common barriers to the introduction of palliative care in this patient population and suggests pulmonologists explore palliative care resources available in their community. Read More

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Grant to Fund Research on Pan-Coronavirus Vaccine

Researchers from the Duke Human Vaccine Institute have received a $17.5 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to develop a new vaccine that can protect people from a range of coronaviruses and viral variants, including those that cause the common cold. The investigators have already designed a pan-coronavirus vaccine that proved protective against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants, along with SARS-CoV-1 and other bat coronaviruses with the potential to cause a new pandemic. The new grant will allow them to build on that work. “We are appreciative of this funding and honored that NIAID has recognized our work as integral to the important mission of preparing for the next pandemic,” said Barton Haynes, MD. “If it’s possible to have a vaccine immediately available when a new pathogen emerges, we could limit much of what has been so deadly and disruptive about the current COVID-19 pandemic.” Read More

Nebulized Medication May Treat COVID-19, Long-COVID

Pharmaceutical start-up Inspiritol, Inc. has embarked on the FDA Investigational New Drug Application process for Inspiritol, a nebulized inhaled multi-mechanism medication designed to treat the major symptoms of respiratory distress with anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and broad spectrum anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. The company will be seeking approval to conduct clinical trials of the drug in patients with COVID-19, long-COVID, and myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue (ME/CHS). Developed by John P. Salerno, MD, and George E. Goag, PhD, the drug has previously been used to treat patients with COPD and asthma. According to researchers from the UMass Chan Medical School, who tested the drug on two patients with long-COVID and one with ME/CHS, “We obtained dramatic improvement of these patients’ symptoms associated with changes in their biomarkers without evidence of any significant side effects, including routine blood work, following continuous Inspiritol therapy from two to more than five months.” Read More

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Debbie Bunch

Debbie Bunch is an AARC contributor who writes feature articles, news stories, and other content for Newsroom, the AARC website, and associated emailed newsletters. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling, photography, and spending time with her children and grandchildren. Connect with Debbie by email or on AARConnect or LinkedIn.

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