top_10_image_2_9’s top 10 news stories of the week

pharmafile | January 22, 2021 | News story | Medical Communications  

A number of’s most popular stories this week are surprisingly unrelated to COVID; researchers in Scotland have made a breakthrough discovery in motor neurone disease treatment, NICE has recommended an ovarian cancer drug for use on the NHS, and ViiV and Chelsea & Westminster Hospital have launched a digital service for HIV patients.

In coronavirus news, though; thousands of people in Israel have tested positive for COVID-19 after receiving the Pfizer vaccine, Alexion’s Phase III trial for coronavirus treatment Ultomiris has been paused, and Indian vaccine maker Bharat Biotech has published guidance on who should avoid taking its jab.

 1. Thousands of Israelis test positive for COVID-19 after receiving Pfizer jab – Published 21/01/2021

Thousands of people in Israel have tested positive for coronavirus after receiving the Pfizer vaccine, including some who had been given their second dose, the country’s Health Ministry has said.

2. Scientists in Scotland make breakthrough MND discovery – Published 20/01/21

Researchers in Scotland have made a discovery that could reverse the damage caused by motor neurone disease (MND).

3. Novartis’ Cosentyx available on NHS in Scotland – Published 19/01/21

Novartis has announced that Cosentyx (secukinumab) 150mg is available in Scotland on the NHS, licensed for adults with active non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA) who have responded inadequately to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, following approval by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC).

4. Alexion pauses Phase III ULTOMIRIS COVID-19 trial enrolment – Published on 15/01/21

Alexion has paused further enrolment in the global Phase III study of ULTOMIRIS (ravulizumab-cwvz) in adult COVID-19 patients requiring mechanical ventilation, due to lack of efficacy.

5. FDA approves Janssen’s AL amyloidosis drug – Published 18/01/21

The FDA has approved Janssen’s DARZALEX FASPRO (daratumumab and hyaluronidase-fihj), a subcutaneous formulation of daratumumab, in combination with bortezomib, cyclophosphamide and dexamethasone (D-VCd) for the treatment of adult patients with newly diagnosed light chain (AL) amyloidosis.

6. NICE recommends GSK’s ZEJULA for advanced ovarian cancerPublished on 15/01/21

NICE has recommended the use of GlaxoSmithKline’s ZEJULA (niraparib) on the NHS in England for adult women with advanced high-grade epithelial ovarian cancer, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer, who have completed and shown a response to platinum-based chemotherapy.

7. Theramex launches osteoporosis drug Livogiva in EuropePublished on 18/01/21

Theramex, a London-headquartered pharmaceutical company dedicated to women’s health, has launched osteoporosis medicine Livogiva to patients in Europe for the first time.

8. Bharat Biotech advises certain groups against taking its COVID-19 vaccinePublished on 19/01/21

Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is effective against the two fast-spreading variants of the virus that emerged in the UK and South Africa, according to new research by the company.

9. ViiV and Chelsea & Westminster Hospital launch digital service for HIV patientsPublished on 18/01/21

Global specialist HIV company ViiV Healthcare and Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust have launched a new service, Klick, which leverages digital technology to provide HIV patients with improved access to the most appropriate care.

10. AstraZeneca’s Imfinzi gets EU and UK approval for new dosing optionPublished on 15/01/21

AstraZeneca’s Imfinzi (durvalumab) has been approved in the EU and the UK for an additional dosing option in locally advanced, unresectable non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) in adults whose tumours express PD-L1 on at least 1% of tumour cells, and whose disease has not progressed following platinum-based chemoradiation therapy (CRT).

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