Sorrento says its oral COVID-19 main protease inhibitor candidate ‘strongly’ neutralizes omicron

Sorrento Therapeutics (NSDQ:SRNE) revealed that its late-stage preclinical main protease inhibitor STI-1558 inhibited omicron virus entry and replication in cell-based assays.

Prior research indicates that STI-1558 offers broad-spectrum activity against SARS-CoV-2.

STI-1558 is distinct from Pfizer’s SARS-CoV-2 drug Paxlovid (nirmatrelvir), which pairs the SARS-CoV-2-3CL protease inhibitor PF-07321332 with ritonavir, which works as a pharmacokinetic enhancer. Sorrento developed STI-1558 to offer optimized human liver microsomal stability to avoid the need for ritonavir.

The company anticipates that STI-1558 will thus have fewer issues with drug-drug interactions.

Sorrento also noted that STI-1558 inhibited pseudovirus entry into cells in an omicron S protein-mediated pseudovirus entry assay, whereas nirmatrelvir did not.

“With omicron becoming a globally dominant variant of SARS-CoV-2 in such a short period of time, we are focused on develop…

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The top 5 MassDevice stories of the week — July 31, 2020

The past week has seen a slew of Q2 earnings reports from medical device companies — and the picture overall hasn’t been pretty amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Still, medtech CEOs during their earnings calls said they’re starting to see some signs of hospital procedures recovering a bit even as the southern U.S. deals with a coronavirus wave. Some of the top MassDevice stories this week actually involved companies providing more solutions to improve management of the pandemic.

Want to hear more about the week’s top news? Executive editor Chris Newmarker and Tom Salemi will discuss during our DeviceTalks Weekly podcast. Without further ado, here’s this week’s MassDevice Top Five:

5. A few bright spots amid the COVID-19 financial toll

Dexcom (NSDQ:DXCM) proved to be one of the few bright spots among medtech Q2 earnings reports, blowing away the Wall Street consensus forecast as it successfully pivoted to making its continuous glucose monitors avail…

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Sorrento licenses COVID-19 saliva test

Sorrento Therapeutics (NSDQ:SRNE) announced that it entered into a licensing agreement with Columbia University for its COVID-19 saliva diagnostic test.

San Diego-based Sorrento’s rapid, one-step diagnostic test is designed to detect SARS-CoV-2 (the virus causing coronavirus) in as little as 30 minutes from a sample of saliva.

Developed by a team at Columbia, the test will be marketed by Sorrento under the name “COVI-TRACE.” It holds all testing materials in a single tube and requires no specialized laboratory equipment, making it deployable for point-of-care, on-site or potentially at-home testing, according to a news release.

Dr. Zev Williams and his team at Columbia developed the test so that the extraction step which requires laboratory collection can be skipped and a person can collect a small sample of saliva in a cup and place it into a tube containing enzymes and reagents that can detect SARS-CoV-2 RNA. The tube is then placed i…

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