Whether shuttling between their lab’s two locations, in Boston’s Longwood Medical Area and Cambridgeport, or visiting the offices of Tome, their gene-editing startup, Gootenberg and Abudayyeh have become as well known in science circles for their friendship as their research and business ventures.
“Science is difficult, and it’s great to have someone to do it with,” said Gootenberg. “You got to work with people you enjoy hanging out with.” Read Full Article
Dozens of mucosal COVID-19 vaccines are in development (see ‘High hopes’) and several have been approved in countries including China and India. But according to an 8 December report by the London-based data and analytics firm Airfinity, the efficacy of existing mucosal COVID-19 vaccines has been disappointing and the available data suggest that “they do not offer a meaningful increase in protection against infection”.
However, the latest studies in monkeys and other laboratory animals offer hints on how these vaccines might be improved. A team led by Dan Barouch, a vaccine scientist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts, tried two approaches in monkeys that had previously received COVID-19 jabs: squirting a liquid vaccine into the animals’ noses, or applying it directly to their tracheae1.
Only the trachea-delivered vaccine substantially boosted mucosal immunity and protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection. “We think that the problem with intranasal delivery is that most of the vaccine is either swallowed or sneezed out,” Barouch says. The results were published in Nature on 14 December. Read Full Article…