Top BioBuzz Stories in Unprecedented First Half to 2020
Well to say that the first two quarters of 2020 have been eventful in the life science sector is the understatement of the century. The BioBuzz team has been there for every twist and turn as the coronavirus pandemic reshaped everyday life and galvanized the BioHealth Capital Region (BHCR) to rise up and fight COVID-19.
In the first half of 2020, we’ve told the stories of life science thought leaders, startups, emerging companies, and publicly-traded organizations. We’ve chronicled the early days of COVID-19 as well as the host of companies that pivoted to develop SARS-Cov-2 tests, produce testing materials, repurpose existing therapies as possible coronavirus treatments and push COVID-19 vaccine candidates safely and quickly through the approval process.
We’ve also focused on the good news and amazing kindnesses shown by companies and individuals across the region as they did their part to help their communities cope with the pandemic.
We’re not sure what the second half of 2020 will bring, but we’ll be here to document it and share insights with you, our audience.
For now, let’s take a look back at the most viewed BioBuzz stories for the first half of 2020. The list below runs with the most viewed story first, followed by other highly viewed stories from Q1/Q2 2020.
Most Viewed Story, First Half 2020:
As the U.S. continues to find its way through a tough fight against this global pandemic, a number of BioHealth Capital Region (BHCR) biotech companies are making significant contributions to stem the COVID-19 pandemic. With people across the U.S. and the world making sacrifices to flatten the curve — along with nurses, doctors and first responders who stand heroically at the front lines — life science companies in our region are doing everything in their power to make COVID-19 vaccine progress with celerity, safety and efficacy top-of-mind.
In another encouraging sign, Altimmune, which is located in Gaithersburg, Maryland announced that it had made progress on a potential vaccine. The company has advanced a potential single-dose, recombinant intranasal vaccine using its proprietary technology. Altimmune’s research scientists have completed the design and synthesis of the vaccine and it is now moving into animal testing. Altimmune projects that clinical testing of the coronavirus vaccine could begin as early as August 2020.
Several Maryland companies are making a global impact in the field of cell and gene therapy. The promise of cell and gene therapies to cure unmet medical needs is finally starting to come through as life-saving new medicines are now hitting the market every year. The global market for gene therapies was estimated at $2.3 billion in 2018 and it is expected to hit a compound annual growth rate of 49.9% to reach $17.4 billion in 2023.
From Development to Commercial Stage, These Five Companies Showcase Why Maryland is a Dominant Cell and Gene Therapy Hub
Gene therapies represent some of the most promising advancements in science and human health in recent history. The BioHealth Capital Region, and Maryland in particular, is rapidly becoming a hub for companies in this field. With the NIH and the National Cancer Institute at the nucleus, some of the most advanced scientific research and technology development in the field is happening in a short 30-mile radius around Montgomery County, Maryland.
In an effort to keep the public informed about COVID-19 vaccine progress, Biobuzz recently connected with Dr. Scot Roberts, Chief Scientific Officer at Altimmune and the company’s President and CEO Dr. Vipin Garg about their potential COVID-19 vaccine to gather insights about the company’s rapid response to the crisis, the coronavirus vaccine candidate’s potential and next steps needed to deploy the treatment.
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