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1.
J Food Prot ; 84(6): 1016-1022, 2021 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1810921

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: Properly executed hand washing by food service employees can greatly minimize the risk of transmitting foodborne pathogens to food and food contact surfaces in restaurants. However, food service employee hand washing is often not done correctly or does not occur as often as it should. The purpose of this study was to assess the relative impact of (i) the convenience and accessibility of hand washing facilities; (ii) the maintenance of hand washing supplies, (iii) multiunit status, (iv) having a certified food protection manager, and (v) having a food safety management system for compliance with proper hand washing. Results revealed marked differences in hand washing behaviors between fast-food and full-service restaurants; 45% of 425 fast-food restaurants and 57% of 396 full-service restaurants were out of compliance for washing hands correctly, and 57% of fast-food restaurants and 78% of full-service restaurants were out of compliance for employee hands being washed when required. Logistic regression results indicated the benefits of accessibility and maintenance of the hand washing sink and of a food safety management system for increasing the likelihood of employees washing hands when they are supposed to and washing them correctly when they do.


Subject(s)
Hand Disinfection , Restaurants , Fast Foods , Risk Factors , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
4.
6.
Lancet ; 399(10330): 1105-1106, 2022 03 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1751239
9.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 16(3): e0010220, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1731579

ABSTRACT

The Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Defense (JPEO-CBRND) began development of a broad-spectrum antiviral countermeasure against deliberate use of high-consequence viral hemorrhagic fevers (VHFs) in 2016. The effort featured comprehensive preclinical research, including laboratory testing and rapid advancement of lead molecules into nonhuman primate (NHP) models of Ebola virus disease (EVD). Remdesivir (GS-5734, Veklury, Gilead Sciences) was the first small molecule therapeutic to successfully emerge from this effort. Remdesivir is an inhibitor of RNA-dependent RNA polymerase, a viral enzyme that is essential for viral replication. Its robust potency and broad-spectrum antiviral activity against certain RNA viruses including Ebola virus and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) led to its clinical evaluation in randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) in human patients during the 2018 EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic today. Remdesivir was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of COVID-19 requiring hospitalization. Substantial gaps remain in improving the outcomes of acute viral infections for patients afflicted with both EVD and COVID-19, including how to increase therapeutic breadth and strategies for the prevention and treatment of severe disease. Combination therapy that joins therapeutics with complimentary mechanisms of action appear promising, both preclinically and in RCTs. Importantly, significant programmatic challenges endure pertaining to a clear drug and biological product development pathway for therapeutics targeting biodefense and emerging pathogens when human efficacy studies are not ethical or feasible. For example, remdesivir's clinical development was facilitated by outbreaks of Ebola and SARS-CoV-2; as such, the development pathway employed for remdesivir is likely to be the exception rather than the rule. The current regulatory licensure pathway for therapeutics targeting rare, weaponizable VHF agents is likely to require use of FDA's established Animal Rule (21 CFR 314.600-650 for drugs; 21 CFR 601.90-95 for biologics). The FDA may grant marketing approval based on adequate and well-controlled animal efficacy studies when the results of those studies establish that the drug is safe and likely to produce clinical benefit in humans. In practical terms, this is anticipated to include a series of rigorous, well-documented, animal challenge studies, to include aerosol challenge, combined with human safety data. While small clinical studies against naturally occurring, high-consequence pathogens are typically performed where possible, approval for the therapeutics currently under development against biodefense pathogens will likely require the Animal Rule pathway utilizing studies in NHPs. We review the development of remdesivir as illustrative of the effort that will be needed to field future therapeutics against highly lethal, infectious agents.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Drug Development , Hemorrhagic Fevers, Viral/drug therapy , Medical Countermeasures , RNA Virus Infections/drug therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/pharmacology , Animals , Humans , Models, Animal , Primates , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration/legislation & jurisprudence
10.
mBio ; 11(3)2020 05 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1723548

ABSTRACT

Due to the urgent need of a therapeutic treatment for coronavirus (CoV) disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, a number of FDA-approved/repurposed drugs have been suggested as antiviral candidates at clinics, without sufficient information. Furthermore, there have been extensive debates over antiviral candidates for their effectiveness and safety against severe acute respiratory syndrome CoV 2 (SARS-CoV-2), suggesting that rapid preclinical animal studies are required to identify potential antiviral candidates for human trials. To this end, the antiviral efficacies of lopinavir-ritonavir, hydroxychloroquine sulfate, and emtricitabine-tenofovir for SARS-CoV-2 infection were assessed in the ferret infection model. While the lopinavir-ritonavir-, hydroxychloroquine sulfate-, or emtricitabine-tenofovir-treated group exhibited lower overall clinical scores than the phosphate-buffered saline (PBS)-treated control group, the virus titers in nasal washes, stool specimens, and respiratory tissues were similar between all three antiviral-candidate-treated groups and the PBS-treated control group. Only the emtricitabine-tenofovir-treated group showed lower virus titers in nasal washes at 8 days postinfection (dpi) than the PBS-treated control group. To further explore the effect of immune suppression on viral infection and clinical outcome, ferrets were treated with azathioprine, an immunosuppressive drug. Compared to the PBS-treated control group, azathioprine-immunosuppressed ferrets exhibited a longer period of clinical illness, higher virus titers in nasal turbinate, delayed virus clearance, and significantly lower serum neutralization (SN) antibody titers. Taken together, all antiviral drugs tested marginally reduced the overall clinical scores of infected ferrets but did not significantly affect in vivo virus titers. Despite the potential discrepancy of drug efficacies between animals and humans, these preclinical ferret data should be highly informative to future therapeutic treatment of COVID-19 patients.IMPORTANCE The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic continues to spread worldwide, with rapidly increasing numbers of mortalities, placing increasing strain on health care systems. Despite serious public health concerns, no effective vaccines or therapeutics have been approved by regulatory agencies. In this study, we tested the FDA-approved drugs lopinavir-ritonavir, hydroxychloroquine sulfate, and emtricitabine-tenofovir against SARS-CoV-2 infection in a highly susceptible ferret infection model. While most of the drug treatments marginally reduced clinical symptoms, they did not reduce virus titers, with the exception of emtricitabine-tenofovir treatment, which led to diminished virus titers in nasal washes at 8 dpi. Further, the azathioprine-treated immunosuppressed ferrets showed delayed virus clearance and low SN titers, resulting in a prolonged infection. As several FDA-approved or repurposed drugs are being tested as antiviral candidates at clinics without sufficient information, rapid preclinical animal studies should proceed to identify therapeutic drug candidates with strong antiviral potential and high safety prior to a human efficacy trial.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Ferrets , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration , Viral Load
11.
Molecules ; 27(3)2022 Feb 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1674738

ABSTRACT

Similar to last year, 2021 will be remembered for the COVID-19 pandemic. Although five vaccines have been approved by the two most important drug regulatory agencies, namely the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the pandemic has still not been brought under control. However, despite the context of a global pandemic, 2021 has been an excellent year with respect to drug approvals by the FDA. In 2021, 50 drugs have been authorized, making it the fourth-best year after 2018 (59 drugs) and 1996 and 2020 (53 each). Regarding biologics, 2021 has been the third-best year to date, with 14 approvals, and it has also witnessed the authorization of 36 small molecules. Of note, nine peptides, eight monoclonal antibodies, two antibody-drug conjugates, and two oligonucleotides have been approved this year. From them, five of the molecules are pegylated and three of them highly pegylated. The presence of nitrogen aromatic heterocycles and/or fluorine atoms are once again predominant among the so-called small molecules. This report analyzes the 50 new drugs approved in 2021 from a chemical perspective, as it did for those authorized in the previous five years. On the basis of chemical structure alone, the drugs that received approval in 2021 are classified as the following: biologics (antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates, enzymes, and pegylated proteins); TIDES (peptide and oligonucleotides); combined drugs; natural products; nitrogen aromatic heterocycles; fluorine-containing molecules; and other small molecules.


Subject(s)
Drug Approval , Drug Industry , United States Food and Drug Administration , Biological Products , Drug Approval/history , Drug Approval/statistics & numerical data , Drug Industry/history , History, 21st Century , Humans , United States
13.
JAMA Intern Med ; 182(3): 332-341, 2022 03 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1661563

ABSTRACT

Importance: The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized SARS-CoV-2 rapid at-home self-test kits for individuals with and without symptoms. How appropriately users interpret and act on the results of at-home COVID-19 self-tests is unknown. Objective: To assess how users of at-home COVID-19 self-test kits interpret and act on results when given instructions authorized by the FDA, instructions based on decision science principles, or no instructions. Design, Setting, and Participants: A randomized clinical trial was conducted of 360 adults in the US who were recruited in April 2021 to complete an online survey on their interpretation of at-home COVID-19 self-test results. Participants were given 1 of 3 instruction types and were presented with 1 of 4 risk scenarios. Participants were paid $5 and had a median survey completion time of 8.7 minutes. Data analyses were performed from June to July 2021. Intervention: Participants were randomized to receiving either the FDA-authorized instructions (authorized), the intervention instructions (intervention), or no instructions (control), and to 1 of 4 scenarios: 3 with a high pretest probability of infection (COVID-19 symptoms and/or a close contact with COVID-19) and 1 with low pretest probability (no symptoms and no contact). The intervention instructions were designed using decision science principles. Main Outcomes and Measures: Proportion of participants in the high pretest probability scenarios choosing to quarantine per federal recommendations and perceived probabilities of infection given a negative or positive COVID-19 test result. A Bonferroni correction accounted for multiple comparisons (3 instruction types × 4 scenarios; α = 0.004). Results: After excluding 22 individuals who completed the survey too quickly, the responses of 338 participants (median [IQR] age, 38 [31 to 48] years; 154 (46%) women; 215 (64%) with a college degree or higher) were included in the study analysis. Given a positive test result, 95% (322 of 338; 95% CI, 0.92 to 0.97) of the total participants appropriately chose to quarantine regardless of which instructions they had received. Given a negative test result, participants in the high pretest probability scenarios were more likely to fail to quarantine appropriately with the authorized instructions (33%) than with the intervention (14%; 95% CI for the 19% difference, 6% to 31%; P = .004) or control (24%; 95% CI for the 9% difference, -4% to 23%; P = .02). In the low pretest probability scenario, the proportion choosing unnecessary quarantine was higher with the authorized instructions (31%) than with the intervention (22%; 95% CI for the 9% difference, -14% to 31%) or control (10%; 95% CI for the 21% difference, 0.5% to 41%)-neither comparison was statistically significant (P = .05 and P = .20 respectively). Conclusions and Relevance: The findings of this randomized clinical trial indicate that at-home COVID-19 self-test kit users relying on the authorized instructions may not follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's quarantine recommendations, producing unintended risks and unnecessary disruptions. Redesigned instructions that follow decision science principles may improve compliance. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04758299.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Comprehension , Self-Testing , Adult , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Quarantine , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
14.
Clin Lab Med ; 42(1): 15-29, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1654213

ABSTRACT

This review provides a broad summary of the performance characteristics of high-throughput severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) serologic assays with Food and Drug Administration Emergency Use Authorization, which are commonly found in central clinical laboratories. In addition, this review discusses the current roles of serologic testing for SARS-CoV-2 and provides a perspective for the future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Clinical Laboratory Services , Antibodies, Viral , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
17.
Molecules ; 27(2)2022 Jan 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625662

ABSTRACT

Antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) are an increasingly represented class of drugs. These small sequences of nucleotides are designed to precisely target other oligonucleotides, usually RNA species, and are modified to protect them from degradation by nucleases. Their specificity is due to their sequence, so it is possible to target any RNA sequence that is already known. These molecules are very versatile and adaptable given that their sequence and chemistry can be custom manufactured. Based on the chemistry being used, their activity may significantly change and their effects on cell function and phenotypes can differ dramatically. While some will cause the target RNA to decay, others will only bind to the target and act as a steric blocker. Their incredible versatility is the key to manipulating several aspects of nucleic acid function as well as their process, and alter the transcriptome profile of a specific cell type or tissue. For example, they can be used to modify splicing or mask specific sites on a target. The entire design rather than just the sequence is essential to ensuring the specificity of the ASO to its target. Thus, it is vitally important to ensure that the complete process of drug design and testing is taken into account. ASOs' adaptability is a considerable advantage, and over the past decades has allowed multiple new drugs to be approved. This, in turn, has had a significant and positive impact on patient lives. Given current challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is necessary to find new therapeutic strategies that would complement the vaccination efforts being used across the globe. ASOs may be a very powerful tool that can be used to target the virus RNA and provide a therapeutic paradigm. The proof of the efficacy of ASOs as an anti-viral agent is long-standing, yet no molecule currently has FDA approval. The emergence and widespread use of RNA vaccines during this health crisis might provide an ideal opportunity to develop the first anti-viral ASOs on the market. In this review, we describe the story of ASOs, the different characteristics of their chemistry, and how their characteristics translate into research and as a clinical tool.


Subject(s)
Drug Development/methods , Oligonucleotides, Antisense/chemistry , Oligonucleotides, Antisense/pharmacology , Animals , COVID-19/therapy , Drug Approval , Drug Design , Humans , Oligonucleotides, Antisense/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
18.
MAbs ; 14(1): 2014296, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1624515

ABSTRACT

In this 13th annual installment of the annual 'Antibodies to Watch' article series, we discuss key events in commercial antibody therapeutics development that occurred in 2021 and forecast events that might occur in 2022. Regulatory review of antibody therapeutics that target the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus proceeded at an unprecedented pace in 2021, resulting in both emergency use authorizations and full approvals for sotrovimab, regdanvimab, REGEN-COV2, as well as others, in numerous countries. As of November 1, a total of 11 antibody therapeutics had been granted first approvals in either the United States or European Union in 2021 (evinacumab, dostarlimab loncastuximab tesirine, amivantamab, aducanumab, tralokinumab, anifrolumab, bimekizumab, tisotumab vedotin, regdanvimab, REGEN-COV2). The first global approvals of seven products, however, were granted elsewhere, including Japan (pabinafusp alfa), China (disitamab vedotin, penpulimab, zimberelimab), Australia (sotrovimab, REGEN-COV2), or the Republic of Korea (regdanvimab). Globally, at least 27 novel antibody therapeutics are undergoing review by regulatory agencies. First actions by the Food and Drug Administration on the biologics license applications for faricimab, sutimlimab, tebentafusp, relatlimab, sintilimab, ublituximab and tezepelumab are expected in the first quarter of 2022. Finally, our data show that, with antibodies for COVID-19 excluded, the late-stage commercial clinical pipeline of antibody therapeutics grew by over 30% in the past year. Of those in late-stage development, marketing applications for at least 22 may occur by the end of 2022.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/therapeutic use , Antibody Specificity , Antigens, Viral/immunology , Asia , Australia , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/therapy , Clinical Trials as Topic , Compassionate Use Trials , Drug Approval , European Union , Forecasting , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration
19.
Microbiol Spectr ; 10(1): e0156421, 2022 02 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1622004

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 created a crucial need for serology assays to detect anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, which led to many serology assays entering the market. A trans-government collaboration was created in April 2020 to independently evaluate the performance of commercial SARS-CoV-2 serology assays and help inform U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulatory decisions. To assess assay performance, three evaluation panels with similar antibody titer distributions were assembled. Each panel consisted of 110 samples with positive (n = 30) serum samples with a wide range of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody titers and negative (n = 80) plasma and/or serum samples that were collected before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each sample was characterized for anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies against the spike protein using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA). Samples were selected for the panel when there was agreement on seropositivity by laboratories at National Cancer Institute's Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (NCI-FNLCR) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The sensitivity and specificity of each assay were assessed to determine Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) suitability. As of January 8, 2021, results from 91 evaluations were made publicly available (https://open.fda.gov/apis/device/covid19serology/, and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/serology-surveillance/serology-test-evaluation.html). Sensitivity ranged from 27% to 100% for IgG (n = 81), from 10% to 100% for IgM (n = 74), and from 73% to 100% for total or pan-immunoglobulins (n = 5). The combined specificity ranged from 58% to 100% (n = 91). Approximately one-third (n = 27) of the assays evaluated are now authorized by FDA for emergency use. This collaboration established a framework for assay performance evaluation that could be used for future outbreaks and could serve as a model for other technologies. IMPORTANCE The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic created a crucial need for accurate serology assays to evaluate seroprevalence and antiviral immune responses. The initial flood of serology assays entering the market with inadequate performance emphasized the need for independent evaluation of commercial SARS-CoV-2 antibody assays using performance evaluation panels to determine suitability for use under EUA. Through a government-wide collaborative network, 91 commercial SARS-CoV-2 serology assay evaluations were performed. Three evaluation panels with similar overall antibody titer distributions were assembled to evaluate performance. Nearly one-third of the assays evaluated met acceptable performance recommendations, and two assays had EUAs revoked and were removed from the U.S. market based on inadequate performance. Data for all serology assays evaluated are available at the FDA and CDC websites (https://open.fda.gov/apis/device/covid19serology/, and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/serology-surveillance/serology-test-evaluation.html).


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19/blood , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Diagnostic Test Approval , Humans , Laboratories , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , United States/epidemiology , United States Food and Drug Administration
20.
Nat Med ; 27(12): 2052-2053, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1612198
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