Three US airports -- San Francisco International Airport, New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport -- will begin screening travelers arriving from central China for a new coronavirus causing a pneumonia outbreak in China. The CDC is sending health workers to assist with screening for the virus, which is genetically similar to Middle East respiratory syndrome and severe acute respiratory syndrome.
It can be difficult for laboratorians to evaluate whether new, proprietary tests requested by patients provide evidence-based clinical utility, write clinical chemistry director Jane Dickerson and department of laboratories medical director Michael Astion of Seattle Children's Hospital. Laboratorians should have a plan in place for talking with providers and patients about tests that may not be clinically useful to ensure patients receive the proper tests, they write.
Researchers have identified a molecule that can be used to expand stem cells from cord blood, according to a study in The Lancet Haematology. The molecule UM171 can help to expand the baseline CD34 cell counts of a unit of cord blood by an average of 35 times, lead author Sandra Cohen said.
Andelyn Biosciences is a biotech spun off by Nationwide Children's Hospital that will focus on manufacturing gene therapy components for use in clinical trials. "Commercial-scale manufacturing represents one of the next significant barriers to the continued development of the field," said Dennis Durbin, chief scientific officer of Nationwide's Abigail Wexner Research Institute.
Details from research published in the journal Nature suggest that finding B cells within a tumor's tertiary lymphoid structures could help predict a patient's potential response to immune checkpoint blockers.
Biocept announced the validation of its Target Selector liquid biopsy assays to determine the presence of biomarkers and circulating tumor cells in the cerebrospinal fluid of breast and lung cancer patients suspected of having central nervous system or brain metastases.
Astellas and Adaptimmune have partnered to develop T-cell receptor and allogeneic chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapies. Adaptimmune will be paid $50 million plus $7.5 million per year to fund the research, in addition to potential milestone payments.
The European Medicines Agency has agreed to allow Emergent BioSolutions to move toward a Phase III trial of its chikungunya virus vaccine candidate. A Phase II trial of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases-licensed vaccine is being conducted in the US.
Chimeric antigen receptor-T cell therapy continues to expand and show potential in changing the clinical course of diseases, writes pathology and immunology assistant professor Suzanne Thibodeaux of Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine. Thibodeaux outlines the steps clinical laboratorians should consider to improve clinical management while ensuring patients receive optimal care throughout the process of CAR-T cell therapy.
The FDA has granted breakthrough device designation to KDx Diagnostics' URO17 test that detects recurrent bladder cancer from urine samples. An initial study showed that the non-invasive test yielded 100% sensitivity and 96% specificity in identifying recurrent bladder cancer.
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