Stopping the transmission of Covid-19 is the goal of next-generation vaccines.
And many experts believe that these vaccines will not be injectable. Instead, people will use a nasal vaccine. Scientists say the mode of delivery could stop transmission by generating immunity where the coronavirus enters the body – in the nose.
India already has a nasal vaccine, although its effectiveness is unknown, and it was designed in the United States
Researchers: Michael Diamond and David Curiel, both professors at the Washington University School of Medicine, first pitched their nasal vaccine to major US pharmaceutical companies. But “there wasn’t as much excitement as we would have thought,” said Diamond, a molecular microbiologist. future impulse.
Ultimately, they licensed iNCOVACC to Indian vaccine maker Bharat Biotech, which received emergency approval last month to give it to adults in India.
Diamond and Curiel, a radiation oncologist, said they created it with the needs of the developing world in mind, given the lack of ultra-cold freezers needed to store mRNA vaccines.
Biosecurity issues: Biden administration officials have said they fear the United States is falling behind other countries in the development of nasal Covid vaccines.
“Intranasal vaccines, variant-resistant vaccines, these are essential tools to have in the toolbox to protect Americans – not only for Covid but also for future pandemics and also for future biosecurity threats”, Ashish Jha , the administration’s Covid-19 response coordinator, told POLITICO.
A vaccine that stops the spread of the coronavirus would better protect people if a more deadly variant emerges, added Karin Bok, acting deputy director of pandemic preparedness and emergency response at the Center for Vaccine Research. the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Nasal vaccines may also be more appealing to people who have not been vaccinated because they fear needles or to parents who are hesitant to have their children vaccinated.
Why is the United States late? Congress has refused to invest more money in the Covid-19 response, and major drugmakers don’t believe nasal vaccines would be cost-effective, given falling vaccine demand.
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TODAY ON OUR Pulse Check Podcast, Grace Scullion talks with Lauren Gardner about the worrying state of mental health in the United States and what lawmakers are proposing to do about it. Plus, David Lim on the new FDA rule allowing over-the-counter hearing aids to be sold.
Apple says ‘the future of healthcare is on your wrist.”
But researchers at Northwestern University found that wearable developers there is still a lot to refine before devices really helped people manage their health.
Some issues they identified:
- Nearly three in 10 users stop wearing smartwatches over time.
- Sometimes patients cannot tolerate having patches designed to track vital signs attached to their skin.
- Devices are not always reliable.
Solving these problems will require “fundamental advances in materials science and systems engineering,” the researchers wrote. Privacy safeguards will be key, they added, as will clinical trials and regulations ensuring the technology works as intended.
Hope for the future: There’s certainly plenty to be excited about in medical wearables.
Companies are evolving wellness tools like step counters to look more like medical devices, with wearable glucometers that allow patients to track diabetes data on their smart devices. The gadgets can connect to healthcare organizations’ digital systems and allow doctors to monitor patients remotely.
New miniaturized devices and patches are promising because they can reduce discomfort. Researchers are also excited about monitoring health indicators via sweat.
“Ultimately, future wearable medical devices and the insights they generate will operate in an ecosystem where remote monitoring, clinician engagement, telemedicine, and even therapy are seamlessly integrated into the system of care. traditional health care,” the researchers wrote.
Hearing impaired can register a package from today.
New FDA rules allowing the sale of over-the-counter hearing aids have gone into effect, and patients can purchase the devices at pharmacies, major retailers and online.
Big savings expected: Prescription hearing aids, the only types previously available, cost thousands of dollars: low-end models cost around $2,000 and high-end versions can cost patients $7,000.
Manufacturers say they can drop prices by $300 to $500 for over-the-counter models.
What happens now: Clients shouldn’t expect to find these prices todaysince hearing aid manufacturers are still developing products and evaluating what the market will bear.
People who choose to go it alone might also miss the guidance of audiologists who help patients buy prescription models, ensure they fit properly, and set the correct sound levels.
Past: As POLITICO reported in August, when the FDA announced the decision, it was a long time coming. Congress passed legislation directing the FDA to approve over-the-counter hearing aids five years ago, and the agency has faced bipartisan pressure to finish the job from lawmakers led by Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).