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‘Business of science’ digest—February 2021

Our monthly round up of key biopharma business stories from across Springer Nature’s portfolio of journals, including the latest on COVID-19 vaccines and a focus on oncology.
Virus on a blue-green background

J&J’s one-shot COVID vaccine offers hope for faster protection

On 29 January, Johnson and Johnson (J&J) announced that its vaccine was 66% effective overall in protecting against moderate to severe COVID-19, 28 days after trial participants received a single shot. Could this be the first one-shot vaccine to be approved?

Nature

Vaccine makers in Asia rush to test jabs against fast-spreading COVID variant

Vaccine makers in India and China are investigating whether their recently approved COVID-19 vaccines are effective against a fast-spreading variant of SARS-CoV-2, following similar investigations by the makers of other leading vaccines.

Nature

How COVID unlocked the power of RNA vaccines

The era of RNA vaccines has arrived—and dozens of companies are getting in the game. But future applications of the technology will run up against some challenges.

Nature

How to redesign COVID vaccines so they protect against variants

Scientists are exploring the idea of redesigning the vaccines currently being rolled out worldwide.

Nature

A pledge to immunize the world’s poorest people and end the pandemic

In June 2020 international funders undertook to buy enough COVID vaccines to immunize the 20% of people most vulnerable to the virus worldwide. But the project, a pioneering effort called COVAX, is struggling to meet expectations.

Nature

COVID vaccine rollout: fairness against speed

Busy phone lines, long queues and crashing websites are hampering attempts by many of the most vulnerable people in the US to get vaccinated, highlighting racial and economic inequalities.

Scientific American

Refreshing the biologic pipeline 2020

In the absence of face-to-face meetings, both the FDA and industry implemented regulatory workarounds to maintain drug and biologics approvals. These could be here to stay.

Nature Biotechnology

Top product forecasts for 2021

Lisa Urquhart, editor of Evaluate Vantage, a pharma and biotech news service, looks at the products that are forecast to have big sales in 2021.

Nature Reviews Drug Discovery

Oncology research needs a better map

It is time to move beyond tumor sequencing data to identify vulnerabilities in cancers, say the authors of the Comment article.

Nature

The breast cancer drug market

The latest piece in this From The Analyst’s Couch series explores the current therapies available to treat breast cancer and the new therapies that are emerging.

Nature Reviews Drug Discovery

Detecting Alzheimer’s with a simple blood test

New assays could reduce the need for costlier, more invasive brain scans and spinal fluid measures.

Scientific American

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