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COVID-19 Treatments


More evidence emerges on why COVID-19 is so much worse than the flu

Lenny Bernstein, Washington Post

Updated: 40 minutes ago

In larger blood vessels of the lungs, the number of blood clots was similar among COVID-19 and flu patients, the researchers wrote. But in COVID-19 patients, they found nine times as many micro-clots in the tiny capillaries of the small air sacs that allow oxygen to pass into the blood stream and carbon dioxide to move out. The virus may have damaged the walls of those capillaries and blocked the movement of those gases, the researchers wrote.

They also found inflamed and damaged cells in the lining of blood vessels in the COVID-19 patients.

Most surprising was evidence that the lungs of people attacked by the SARS-CoV-2 virus grew new blood vessels.

"The lungs from patients with COVID-19 had significant new vessel growth," a discovery the researchers described as "unexpected." In an interview, Mentzer speculated that may have been an attempt by the lungs to pass more oxygen to hypoxic tissue.



Relief for the COVID Kidney Threat?

Stockhouse Editorial

55 minutes ago

As hospitals across the United States continue to bring in waves of new patients with the COVID-19 coronavirus that has infected 1.9 million people in the country to date, the public remains focused on the damage the disease causes to our lungs, but a new study has found that more than a third of patients treated in a large New York medical system also developed severe and acute kidney injury.

This is where a biopharmaceutical company like XORTX Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: XRX, OTCQB: XRTXF, Forum) comes in to play, as it falls right under the criteria where its team is specializing.

With solid intellectual property rights, along with established proof of concept through independent clinical studies, XORTX is Click to enlargeworking to advance its clinical development stage products that target xanthine oxidase to inhibit production of uric acid. The Company has three very relevant products to this need in clinical development.



Halifax Companies Developing a Face Mask That Can Detect COVID-19

Omri Wallach


1 hour ago

But the immediate need and urgency for COVID-19 testing solutions meant that the Company could look at expanding the use of the virus detection technology. On Apr. 17, Sixth Wave (SIXW) announced it had filed for a second virus detection patent application to encompass a broad spectrum of devices, delivery systems and appliances. Where the first patent focused on the virus-detecting Accelerated Detection MIPs (“AMIPS”) platform, the second combines the sensor with practical devices to significantly alter the virus-detection landscape.



China's new outbreak shows signs the virus could be changing

Bloomberg News

May 20, 2020

Chinese doctors are seeing the coronavirus manifest differently among patients in its new cluster of cases in the northeast region compared to the original outbreak in Wuhan, suggesting that the pathogen may be changing in unknown ways and complicating efforts to stamp it out.

Patients in the northeast also appear to be taking longer than the one to two weeks observed in Wuhan to develop symptoms after infection, and this delayed onset is making it harder for authorities to catch cases before they spread, said Qiu, who is now in the northern region treating patients.

Qiu said that doctors have also noticed patients in the northeast cluster seem to have damage mostly in their lungs, whereas patients in Wuhan suffered multi-organ damage across the heart, kidney and gut.




May 20, 2020

DNA vaccine protection against SARS-CoV-2 in rhesus macaques Jingyou Yu et al.

Research Article | Science Date: 20-May-2020 DOI: 10.1126/science.abc6284

SARS-CoV-2 infection protects against rechallenge in rhesus macaques Abishek Chandrashekar et al.

Research Article | Science Date: 20-May-2020 DOI: 10.1126/science.abc4776


2 hours ago

Two studies in monkeys provide some of the first scientific evidence that surviving COVID-19 may result in immunity from reinfection

In a positive signal for vaccine development, two peer-reviewed studies published in @ScienceMagazine on Wednesday showed that rhesus macaque monkeys who recovered from COVID-19 were later immune when they were re-exposed to the virus. More research is needed to determine if immunity also applies to humans. Lead author of the studies, Dr Dan Barouch, said: “These data increase our optimism that natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity can be achieved in humans.”


Coronavirus: Hong Kong researchers find three-drug combination suppresses virus nearly twice as fast as drug held up as major hope against pandemic

Elizabeth Cheung

Updated: 11:24pm, May 9, 2020

The findings of the research, led by University of Hong Kong academics and published in The Lancet on Saturday, could signal progress in the search for a standard form of therapy for Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes the Covid-19 disease .

It discovered that using the antiviral drugs interferon beta-1b, lopinavir-ritonavir and ribavirin together was “safe and more effective” in reducing the duration of viral shedding – when the coronavirus is detectable and potentially transmissible – for patients with mild to moderate symptoms, while accelerating their recovery.



Scientists Create Antibody That Defeats Coronavirus in Lab

Tim Loh

May 4, 2020, 10:01 AM EDT Updated on May 4, 2020

The antibody known as 47D11 targets the spike protein that gives the new coronavirus a crown-like shape and lets it enter human cells. In the Utrecht experiments, it didn’t just defeat the virus responsible for Covid-19 but also a cousin equipped with similar spike proteins, which causes Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS.

Monoclonal antibodies are lab-created proteins that resemble naturally occurring versions the body raises to fight off bacteria and viruses. Highly potent, they target exactly one site on a virus.

Two such antibody therapies show promise against Ebola. Companies such as Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. are also working on possible antibody treatments for the coronavirus.




The groundbreaking way to search lungs for signs of Covid-19

Chris Baraniuk

May 5, 2020

When Covid-19 was at its height in China, doctors in the city of Wuhan were able to use artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to scan the lungs of thousands of patients.

The algorithm in question, developed by Axial AI, analyses CT imagery in seconds. It declares, for example, whether a patient has a high risk of viral pneumonia from coronavirus or not.

A consortium of firms developed the AI in response to the coronavirus outbreak. They say it can show whether a patient's lungs have improved or worsened over time, when more CT scans are done for comparison.


Coronavirus Causes Damaging Blood Clots From Brain to Toes

Jason Gale

Updated on May 5, 2020,

Viruses including HIV, dengue and Ebola are all known to make blood cells prone to clumping. The pro-clotting effect may be even more pronounced in patients with the coronavirus.

The problem is visible in clots -- doctors call them thrombi -- that form in patients’ arterial catheters and filters used to support failing kidneys. More pernicious are the clots that impede blood flow in the lungs, causing difficulty breathing.

Clotting disorders in Covid-19 patients were noted by researchers in China in February, but their gravity has since become clearer. While doctors had thought the vast majority of lung damage was due to viral pneumonia, they’re now looking more closely at clotting.

In Italy, the first European country gripped by the pandemic, it was after Covid-19 patients died from acute pulmonary emboli and other clotting-related events that doctors moved to inflammation-blocking treatments, such as tocilizumab, sold by Roche Holding AG as Actemra, said Frank Rasulo, a head of neuro critical care at Spedali Civili University Hospital in Brescia.

Some doctors are starting to see Covid as less of a typical respiratory disease, and more of one that involves dangerous clotting, said Rasulo, who is also an associate professor of anesthesia and intensive care. “That’s quite frightening when you think of it, because we didn’t know what we’re up against until we were in a later stage.”