· The Kidney Project’s implantable bioartificial kidney, one that promises to free kidney disease patients from dialysis machines and transplant waiting lists, took another big step toward becoming reality. The Kidney Project, a nationwide collaboration, combined the two essential parts of its artificial kidney, the hemofilter and the bioreactor, and successfully implanted the smartphone-sized device for preclinical evaluation. In the last few years, The Kidney Project successfully tested the hemofilter, which removes waste products and toxins from blood, and the bioreactor, which replicates other kidney functions, like the balance of electrolytes in blood, in separate experiments. According to Roy, a faculty member of the UCSF Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine, the artificial kidney will give people high quality of life without the need for immunodepressions, which can cause severe side effects in kidney transplant recipients.
· A pill given early after infection with SARS-CoV-2 cuts in half a person’s risk of hospitalization and death from COVID-19, according to results announced today by the pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. This treatment marks the first oral antiviral that combats SARS-CoV-2(Covid 19). The results came from data from 775 non-hospitalized patients who joined the study within 5 days of symptoms starting and had at least one risk factor for developing severe disease. The patients received a 5-day course of the medication, which lab studies have shown disrupts the ability of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to replicate its genome. The U.S. government has placed an advance order for 1.7 million doses of molnupiravir at $700 for a 5-day course, The New York Times reports.
· Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Oakland University have utilized two-dimensional hybrid metal halides in a device that allows directional control of terahertz radiation generated by a spintronic scheme. The hybrid metal in this new device is cheaper, thinner, and lighter than previously used materials and also allows for better control of terahertz emissions. These terahertz waves, found between 100 gigahertz and 20 terahertz, have shown to be able to speed up computing speeds and communication in sensitive detection equipment. The new device layered the 2-D hybrid metal halides with a ferromagnetic metal, then excited it with a laser, creating an ultrafast spin current that in turn generated THz radiation. One of the head researchers named Sun describes that the new device allows directional control of this radiation which further increases the efficiency of the machine. The new hybrid metal also allows a higher temperature threshold for the device and thus prevents overheating and allows for a higher magnitude of radiation to be controlled.