Retina Report

There were positive data at the American Society of Retina Specialists virtual meeting on a number of drugs, including: Wet AMD: Roche’s PDS and faricimab, Kodiak Sciences’ KSI-301, and two gene therapies – Adverum Biotechnologies’ ADVM-022 and Regenexbio’s RGX-314; DME: Opthea’s OPT-302; Dry AMD: IVERIC bio’s Zimura and Hemera Biosciences’ gene therapy HMR-59; Retinitis pigmentosa: GenSight Biologics’ GS-030-DP and J&J’s AAV-RPGR gene therapy. But the news was not so good for Novartis’ Beovu. Doctors are reluctant to this longer-acting anti-VEGF due to safety issues.

TVT - LAA Closure

Interventional cardiologists are big fans of LAA closure for atrial fibrillation. In the U.S. only Boston Scientific’s Watchman is currently available, but cardiologists in Europe have a few others. European as well as U.S. cardiologists are anxious for newer devices – and there is a long list of them in development. Four sessions at the Transcatheter Valve Therapies virtual TVT 2020 provided a good overview and insight into how cardiologists are thinking about the new devices in development.

AACR-II Bulletin

Among the studies being presented in Part-II of the American Association for Cancer Research virtual meeting are a vaccine/immunotherapy combination in solid tumors, statins in epithelial ovarian cancer, and survival with immunotherapy in Stage III melanoma.

Bulletin: Coronavirus Update 5/31

The number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. today is more than triple what it was 51 days ago, and the U.S. now has almost as many cases as existed in the entire world on April 11, 2020. Why is the mortality rate so low in Russia? Why are nursing homes 43% of all U.S. deaths? What does it mean to have a loved one in the hospital today for a non-Covid-19? Is flying really unsafe? What tests and treatments are being developed? What do leading pharma executives have to say about vaccine development? This report looks at each of these questions

ASCO Bulletin #1

In advance of the American Society of Clinical Oncology virtual meeting, ASCO highlighted potentially practice-changing results with three drugs in four cancers in a virtual press conference. Interestingly, all were drugs already approved for some other indication or cancer stage; they were not investigational agents.

Bulletin: Coronavirus Update 5/22

Outside of China, the first big flare of Covid-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, was in Europe, but, with the notable exception of the U.K. that appears to be mostly getting under control, and countries are very gradually re-opening. Then, the U.S. became the hot spot, but the U.S. now is on the downside of the coronavirus peak, and all U.S states have started re-opening. Unfortunately, the virus is now flaring in two other disparate areas of the world: Brazil, which now has the most cases after the U.S. and Russia.

Bulletin: Coronavirus Update 5/20

Up to now, the focus in the coronavirus pandemic has been on preventing, diagnosing, and treating Covid-19 – on ventilators, testing, and masks. However, as the number of hospitalized Covid-19 patients drops in the U.S , shelter-at-home orders are being gradually lifted, and the economy is slowly re-opening. Thus, this report focuses on two other topics that deserve some attention: (1) The outlook for elective surgery procedures, and (2) the long-term consequences (if any) for Covid-19 survivors.

ASCO 2020 Preview

There are always so many trials reported at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) that it is difficult not to miss something. Here is a quick look at some of the key studies – and we apologize for any we missed – to be presented at this year’s ASCO virtual meeting May 29-31, 2020. The first lists are by company/drug, sorted by Phase I-I/II-II-III. Below all of that is a list of the Phase III trials by cancer type. We hope this helps in planning, at least in some small way.

Bulletin: Coronavirus Update 5/7

Mitigation efforts aimed at slowing the SARS-CoV-2 virus and Covid-19, the disease it causes, appear to be working in the U.S. and in many European countries. The peak likely has been reached in the U.S and in many European countries, and steps – mostly baby steps – are being taken to re-open economies. It seems increasingly unlikely that President Trump’s prediction of a V-shaped U.S. recovery will occur in the U.S. or elsewhere. The outlook is for either a U-shaped recovery or a W-shaped recovery, if there is a second wave of Covid-19 this fall.

Bulletin: Coronavirus Update 4/27

The SARS-CoV-2 virus and Covid-19, the disease it causes, continue to have much of the world on pause, but there are small signs of the beginning of the end. In the U.S. and most of Europe, the rate of Covid-19 cases appears to have peaked/ plateaued and, in some places, started a slow decline. Countries, states, and localities are starting to try to figure out how to safely get their economy restarted again. However, it is clear that this will not be quick, and there will be no sudden return to the old normal. And s far there are no therapies that have shown significant efficacy.

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