August 5, 2016 |
Inovio Pharmaceuticals In Plymouth Meeting said Wednesday that it will continue to develop its hepatitis B immunotherapy independently, after Roche notified the company it was ending the collaboration for drug candidate, INO-1800. Roche notified Inovio on July 28 that it was returning the treatment for chronic hepatitis B infection that Roche had licensed in 2013. Inovio said in a statement that it will continue with a Phase 1 study, and will enroll patients as planned at 30 clinical sites in the United States and Asia, with study results expected in the second half of next year.
July 28, 2016 |
The first volunteer has received a dose of Inovio Pharmaceuticals' experimental vaccine to combat the Zika virus, the Plymouth meeting biotech company said Tuesday. Inovio is developing its Zika vaccine with partner GeneOne Life Science in South Korea. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Health Canada's Health Products and Food Branch have approved early-stage tests in 40 healthy adults, the company said. The tests will be done in Philadelphia, Miami, and Quebec City, and will evaluate safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of the vaccine against the mosquito-borne virus.
July 9, 2016 |
Drug maker GlaxoSmithKline said Thursday that it will collaborate with the National Institutes of Health to evaluate a new vaccine technology to protect against Zika virus. GSK said it has concluded feasibility assessments and is preparing research studies with the NIH. The technology, known as SAM (self-amplifying mRNA), is designed to produce an immune response but does not use a live or killed virus, as do many conventional vaccines. The GSK vaccine delivers nucleic acid to the cytoplasm of a cell, where it can "self-amplify" - and reproduce thousands of times.
July 1, 2016 |
Drug maker Merck announced Wednesday a licensing agreement with a suburban Boston biotech company to develop and commercialize personalized cancer vaccines. Merck, which employs 9,200 in Montgomery County, will pay Moderna Therapeutics Inc. $200 million in cash. The Cambridge, Mass. company will do early research and development of its protein therapies based on "messenger RNA" or mRNA technology, which targets the unique properties of an individual's cancer, and carry development into clinical trials.
June 22, 2016 |
The first testing in people of an experimental vaccine to combat the Zika virus will begin in the next several weeks, a Philadelphia-area biotech company announced Monday. Inovio Pharmaceuticals in Plymouth Meeting and partner GeneOne Life Science in South Korea said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given approval to begin early-stage tests in 40 healthy adults. Shares of Inovio rose 6.97 percent, or 73 cents, to $11.20 after the announcement. The tests will be done at three U.S. locations, including Philadelphia, and will evaluate safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of the vaccine against the mosquito-borne virus.
May 25, 2016 |
A small biotech company and a global vaccine maker in Southeastern Pennsylvania are among those racing to come up with a vaccine to combat the rise in the spread of the Zika virus in Brazil and other countries. The United States has yet to face a major outbreak, but concern is growing, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that the number of pregnant women in the U.S. infected with the Zika virus had tripled - from 48 to 157 - due to a change in the way the government counts cases.
May 22, 2016
Scientists are planning a major study of an experimental HIV vaccine in South Africa later this year. The shots are based on the only attempted HIV vaccine ever to show even marginal effectiveness, in Thailand in 2009. The U.S. National Institutes of Health said Wednesday that its study in South Africa will use shots modified for better protection. Starting in November, 5,400 adult volunteers would receive five injections over a year, either vaccine or dummy shots. Results are expected in 2020.
May 1, 2016 |
HOW OFTEN do you have your dog or cat vaccinated? If you're still following an annual schedule, you may want to reconsider. Vaccines save lives. They teach the immune system to recognize and fight off invading organisms that cause severe and sometimes fatal diseases, such as distemper and parvovirus. But they too often brings health risks. Vaccine reactions are rare, but they include mild itching or swelling; vaccine sarcomas - cancer at the injection site - diagnosed in as many as 20,000 cats a year; autoimmune hemolytic anemia in dogs; and anaphylactic shock leading to death.
April 13, 2016 |
Abington School District administrators say they have been dealing with an unexpectedly large number of pertussis cases this school year. Most unusual, according to health officials, is that the district had not experienced an outbreak before. Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, tends to run in cycles, and this year's incidence is not unusual at the national, state, and county levels. The 56 cases in Montgomery County since Jan. 1 are "pretty routine," said Frank X. Custer, a spokesman for the county.
January 24, 2016 |
A high school student in Cherry Hill has been found to have whooping cough. Officials at Cherry Hill High School East wrote in a letter to parents that the student with the confirmed pertussis case was in the building during the week of Jan. 11, but had not been in school since Jan. 15. The highly contagious disease is spread through the air by coughing or sneezing. "We continue to monitor the situation at school, and if additional actions to control the spread of pertussis among pupils become necessary, we will again notify parents," the principal, Lawyer Chapman, wrote in the letter.