A new FDA-authorized COVID-19 test doesn’t need a lab and can produce results in just 5 minutes

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There’s a new COVID-19 test from healthcare technology maker Abbott that looks to be the fastest yet in terms of producing results, and that can do so on the spot right at point-of-care, without requiring a round trip to a lab. This test for the novel coronavirus causing the current global pandemic has received emergency clearance for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and will begin production next week, with output of 50,000 per day possible starting next week.

The new Abbott ID NOW COVID-19 test uses the Abbott ID NOW diagnostics platform, which is essentially a lab-in-a-box that is roughly the size of a small kitchen appliance. Its size and that it can produce either a positive result in just five minutes or a negative one in under 15 mean that it could be a very useful means to extend coronavirus testing beyond its current availability to more places including clinics and doctor’s offices, and cut down on wait times both in terms of getting tested and receiving a diagnosis.

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A Step Closer to a Universal Flu Shot That Protects for Life

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Antibodies developed in patients who had the H1N1 pandemic flu strain that protect against a variety of flu strains.

The swine flu outbreak that swept across the globe claiming over 14,000 lives could provide scientists with a vital clue to creating a universal vaccine, a study claims. Researchers have found several patients infected with the 2009 H1N1 pandemic flu strain have developed antibodies that are protective against a variety of flu strains.

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Virus Breakthrough Could Mean a Cure for the Common Cold

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Virus circulating in the bloodstream recognised by antibodies (yellow) of the immune system.

Scientists say they have made a landmark discovery which could pave the way for new drugs to beat illnesses like the common cold.  Until now experts had thought that antibodies could only tackle viral infections by blocking or attacking viruses outside cells.

 

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Study: Breastfeeding Could Save 900 Babies and Millions of Dollars Each Year

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Breastfeeding could save lives

The lives of nearly 900 babies would be saved each year, along with billions of dollars, if 90% of U.S. women breast-fed their babies for the first six months of life, a cost analysis says. Those startling results, published online Monday in the journal Pediatrics, are only an estimate. But several experts who reviewed the analysis said the methods and conclusions seem sound.

 

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Scientists Work on a Vaccine to Prevent Strokes

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An occupational therapist works on balance with a patient who suffered a stroke

Researchers at Sweden’s Karolinska Institutet have been conducting studies on for many years. Among their findings are studies indicating that stroke victims lack a certain antibodies, anti-PC, in their immune systems that normally reduces the risk of arteriosclerosis, a thickening of arterial walls that can lead to stroke.  Their most recent study provides the impetus to move ahead with the development of a preventative vaccine. 

 

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Anti-Smoking Vaccine May Be Available Soon

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The vaccine is injected and works by creating anti-bodies

Smokers could soon have access to an injectable vaccine to help them break the habit following a deal between GlaxoSmithKline and Nabi Pharmaceuticals, the company that developed the drug.  The NicVAX vaccine works by preventing nicotine in tobacco entering the brain, where it creates an addictive sensation of pleasure.  Trials have shown it can halve the number of people who return to smoking after trying to give up.

 

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Potential Way To Make AIDS Vaccine Found

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The first new HIV antibodies to have been identified in more than 10 years, PG9 and PG16

The discovery of immune system particles that attack the AIDS virus may finally open a way to make a vaccine that could protect people against the deadly and incurable infection, U.S. researchers said on Thursday.

 

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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Could Be Linked To Sore Throat Bug

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Obsessive Compulsive Disorder could start from a sore throat

David Beckham is one of the most high-profile sufferers of the condition Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.  He has spoken of his compulsion to count clothes and place magazines in straight lines and symmetrical patterns.  He may be surprised to learn that it could be due to nothing more than a sore throat he once caught.

 

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Colon Cancer Vaccine

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X-ray image shows a barium enema in a patient with cancer of the bowel

A cancer vaccine with a twist is making headway in clinical trials at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Rather than targeting a cancer-related virus–the way Gardasil targets human papillomavirus to prevent some cervical cancers–the new vaccine triggers the immune system to attack a faulty protein that’s often abundant in colorectal cancer tissue and precancerous tissue.

 

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Instant Immunity From A Vaccine

Instant Immunity From A Vaccine

 

A new approach primes antibodies to instantly attack cancers, HIV, and other diseases.

The body’s immune system is often likened to an army, and vaccines to training exercises that build up defenses against pathogens. By exposing the immune system to inactive forms of a virus or bacteria, a vaccine trains antibodies to fight off a real pathogen in the event of an invasion. However, while vaccines prepare antibodies to identify an attacker, they often don’t give specific instructions on exactly how to bring it down. Some antibodies may successfully hit a pathogen’s weak spot, while others may miss the mark entirely. That’s part of the reason why it normally takes several weeks or months for some vaccines to build up an effective immune response.

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