💊 Africa CDC's grouse with Pandemic Fund allocations; Biogen bulks up in rare disease department; AstraZeneca's new gene therapies
#395 | Ant honey against infections; Beans for your skin; Carbon sink becoming carbon source
Hello there! Welcome back to The Kable. While you were kicking back over the weekend, the life sciences were still very much awake, alive and kicking. One of the biggest deals of the year, a critique of the Pandemic Fund’s very first grant allocation, research updates covering Alzheimer’s treatment and using mRNA against cancer have been streaming in. Today’s Kable is here to get you all caught up with everything that happened since we last met.
First, Uganda is saying hello to health for all and goodbye to hepatitis with its free testing, treatment and immunisation programme.
Gavi’s Equity Accelerator Fund has allocated $59.7 million to the Democratic Republic of Congo. Why? To reduce the number of zero-dose children by 35% by 2025. How? Through GPS and SMS tracking, door-to-door outreach, community health worker support in identifying zero-dose children, and taking on gender-related obstacles.
As temperatures rise in the usually cold Northern province of Rwanda, authorities are warning of an increased risk of malaria.
Once bitten, Sri Lanka is no longer buying eye drops made by Indiana Opthalmics in the Indian state of Gujarat. Considering Indian drug regulators have taken no action even 3 months after Sri Lanka flagged eye drop-linked infections, can you really blame them?
South Korea’s Kolon Pharma is partnering up with medical device company Dongbang Medical to venture into the Brazilian aesthetic surgical procedure market.
AstraZeneca and Ionis Pharmaceuticals have expanded their global licensing deal for the rare heart disease drug Eplontersen to Latin America. That’s another $20 million in Ionis’ pocket.
Japanese startup AI Medical Services has entered a joint research agreement with Stanford Medicine in the field of endoscopic AI.
While the US has had its eyes set on potentially dangerous labs across the Pacific, investigators have found an illegal lab in their very own California. What’s hiding in this Fresno warehouse? Nearly 1000 bioengineered mice and improperly stored samples of Covid, HIV, herpes, E. coli and malaria.
Over in the EU, Germany has become the first big European market for Novo Nordisk’s weight loss drug Wegovy. As public health insurance plans are barred from covering the drug, Nordisk appears optimistic that people will pay for the drug out of pocket.
Antibiotic resistance has tremendous human and financial costs. This article looks at the drivers of antibiotic resistance and what can be done to encourage responsible use and incentivize pharma companies to develop new antibiotics.
And finally, death is not as final as you thought it was. 46,000-year-old worms from the Siberian permafrost have been defrosted back to life. Good grief!