Bacteriophages Synergize with the Gut Microbial Community To Combat Salmonella

| December 12, 2018

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Using a human gut microbiota model, we demonstrate that bacteriophages (phages) are able to substantially decrease pathogenic Salmonella without perturbing the microbiota. Conversely, antibiotic treatment leads to the eradication of close to all commensal bacteria, leaving only antibiotic-resistant bacteria. An unbalanced microbiota has been linked to many diseases both in the gastrointestinal tract or “nonintestinal” diseases.

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Alkahest, Inc. Alkahest, Inc.

Alkahest is developing therapies derived from blood to treat neurological diseases, with an emphasis on age-related cognitive decline -- key medical challenges of our generation. The company’s breakthrough research has demonstrated that factors in blood plasma of young mice are able to reverse brain deficits in normal aging and Alzheimer’s disease models in mice. Clinical studies are being conducted in patients with different types of dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. Alkahest is a private company based in San Carlos, CA, with investors including Barcelona, Spain-based Grifols, a global healthcare company and leading producer of plasma therapies, also a collaboration and commercialization partner.

OTHER ARTICLES

Ruminating on Bioprocessing 4.0

Article | February 18, 2020

The Bioprocessing 4.0 concept seeks to apply automation and technology to the digital transformation of biologics manufacturing. As the paradigm moves forward, it faces barriers to its adoption, according to Eric Langer, president of BioPlan Associates. “Perhaps the greatest challenges involve unsecured links and adapting the applications to areas where automation is critically needed today,” says Langer. “Unresolved security issues could seriously affect a company’s data in a regulated environment, so they will need to have iron-clad anti-hacking protection in place. Unfortunately, cyber security is not yet a top focus for the industry.”

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Translating Pharmacomicrobiomics: Three Actionable Challenges/Prospects in 2020

Article | February 24, 2020

The year 2020 marks a decade since the term pharmacomicrobiomics was coined (Rizkallah et al., 2010) to crystallize a century-old concept of mutual interactions between humans, drugs, and the microbial world. The human microbiome, with its immense metabolic potential that exceeds and expands the human metabolic capacities, has the ability to modulate pharmacotherapy by affecting both pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of drug molecules:

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Better Purification and Recovery in Bioprocessing

Article | August 2, 2021

In the downstream portion of any bioprocess, one must pick through the dross before one can seize the gold the biotherapeutic that the bioprocess was always meant to generate. Unfortunately, the dross is both voluminous and various. And the biotherapeutic gold, unlike real gold, is corruptible. That is, it can suffer structural damage and activity loss. When discarding the dross and collecting the gold, bioprocessors must be efficient and gentle. They must, to the extent possible, eliminate contaminants and organic debris while ensuring that biotherapeutics avoid aggregation-inducing stresses and retain their integrity during purification and recovery. Anything less compromises purity and reduces yield. To purify and recover biotherapeutics efficiently and gently, bioprocessors must avail themselves of the most appropriate tools and techniques. Here, we talk with several experts about which tools and techniques can help bioprocessors overcome persistent challenges. Some of these experts also touch on new approaches that can help bioprocessors address emerging challenges.

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Top 10 biotech IPOs in 2019

Article | February 24, 2020

The big question at the start of 2019 was whether the IPO window would stay open for biotech companies, particularly those seeking to pull off ever-larger IPOs at increasingly earlier stages of development. The short answer is yes—kind of. Here’s the long answer: In the words of Renaissance Capital, the IPO market had “a mostly good year.” The total number of deals fell to 159 from 192 the year before, but technology and healthcare companies were standout performers. The latter—which include biotech, medtech and diagnostics companies—led the pack, making up 43% of all IPOs in 2019. By Renaissance’s count, seven companies went public at valuations exceeding $1 billion, up from five the year before

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Spotlight

Alkahest, Inc. Alkahest, Inc.

Alkahest is developing therapies derived from blood to treat neurological diseases, with an emphasis on age-related cognitive decline -- key medical challenges of our generation. The company’s breakthrough research has demonstrated that factors in blood plasma of young mice are able to reverse brain deficits in normal aging and Alzheimer’s disease models in mice. Clinical studies are being conducted in patients with different types of dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. Alkahest is a private company based in San Carlos, CA, with investors including Barcelona, Spain-based Grifols, a global healthcare company and leading producer of plasma therapies, also a collaboration and commercialization partner.

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