Oracle tells employees it donated a COVID-19 'therapeutic learning system' that can help speed up the development of a treatment to the US government (ORCL)
Oracle founder Larry Ellison and CEO Safra Catz told employees Tuesday that the tech giant has set up cloud tools to help the US government find a COVID-19 cure faster, according to a copy of an internal memo seen by Business Insider. Oracle has created applications to help scientists run clinical trials on possible cures, including antimalarial drugs endorsed by President Donald Trump but which health professionals say need more definitive tests. The company also created a tool, called "therapeutic learning system, accessible in the US and other countries, which the US government, state agencies and other countries could use for gathering real-time data on the effectiveness of specific treatments. The tool would essentially serve as a global crowdsourcing system for evaluating the different treatments and remedies being tried by physicians and individuals throughout the world, according to a source familiar with the situation. Ellison and Catz are among Trump's top supporters in the tech industry, with the former recently hosting a fundraising dinner for the president's re-election campaign. Click here for more BI Prime stories.
Oracle told its employees Tuesday that it has set up a cloud system that would help the US government find a cure for COVID-19 faster, according to a copy of an internal memo seen by Business Insider. Oracle also said in the memo that it set up and donated to the US government a "therapeutic learning system" which would allow doctors and patients to "record responses to promising COVID-19 drug therapies." This would make it possible to collect "real-world data" from the US and other countries on the effectiveness of specific COVID-19 treatments. "We are proud to use our resources and talent to make a difference," Ellison and Catz said in the memo. "We will win this war!" The memo was signed "Larry and Safra." The "therapeutic learning system" would essentially serve as a global crowdsourcing tool for evaluating the different treatments and remedies being tried by physicians and individuals throughout the world, according to a source familiar with the situation. The data, which will be anonymized, will be accessible for free to the Department of Health and Human Services and the health agencies of states and other countries. It is not intended to replace clinical trials, but would offer more insights into the treatments being tried worldwide, the source said. The memo specifically cites efforts in helping clinicians assess the possibility of using antimalarial drugs like hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 treatment. President Donald Trump has been criticized for publicly endorsing malaria drugs for the treatment of COVID-19. However, leading medical professionals, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Trump administration's key infectious-disease expert, said clinical tests were needed to make sure the substances are safe and effective. Ellison and Catz are among Trump's top supporters in the tech industry. Catz had served as a member of his transition team after the 2016 election. Ellison recently held a fundraising dinner for Trump, which sparked a protest by some Oracle employees. Cloud tools Oracle founder Larry Ellison and CEO Safra Catz also told employees that the tech giant has deployed cloud applications to the US government to help evaluate proposed drugs for the pandemic. Oracle is the leading provider of enterprise technology, including sophisticated database systems used to store and manage information of some of the biggest corporations and government agencies. These technologies could be critical in performing expedited clinical tests rapidly with high degrees of accuracy. The cloud tools "will gather data necessary to enable health professionals to answer a few questions: What drugs, at what dosages when administered, are effective in treating or preventing the COVID-19 virus?" Scientists and health professionals will be able to use its cloud tools to run clinical trials to test seven COVID-19 drugs and vaccines. The clinical trials involve 250 institutional sites in 17 countries, the Oracle executives said.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Most maps of Louisiana aren't entirely right. Here's what the state really looks like.
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The shift, quietly disclosed on a government website, highlights how the Trump administration is favoring development...The shift, quietly disclosed on a government website, highlights how the Trump administration is favoring development of vaccines over treatments for the sickest patients.
Clive Palmer bought millions of doses of hydroxychloroquine but those who rely on it for autoimmune...Clive Palmer bought millions of doses of hydroxychloroquine but those who rely on it for autoimmune conditions will not have access, government saysSign up for Guardian Australia’s daily coronavirus emailDownload the free Guardian app to get the most important news notificationsThe federal government has no plans to make millions of doses of an experimental drug being used in clinical trials on Covid-19 patients available to people who rely on the medicine to treat severe autoimmune conditions, despite Australia’s low number of Covid-19 cases.The former politician Clive Palmer was granted permission by Australia’s drugs regulator to import the drug, hydroxychloroquine, and the materials required to produce it, so that doses could be added to the national medical stockpile. The drug is used overseas to prevent and treat malaria, and is mostly prescribed in Australia to treat painful symptoms of autoimmune conditions including rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. Continue reading...
We don't have any good treatments for the novel coronavirus right now, but scientists are racing to change that
We don't yet have any drugs designed to fight the novel coronavirus. For now, doctors focus...We don't yet have any drugs designed to fight the novel coronavirus. For now, doctors focus on treating the symptoms of COVID-19, helping keep people alive so their bodies can fight off the virus. Scientists are racing to develop treatments and vaccines to stop the outbreak. Biotech company Gilead is testing a drug call remdesivir, and Moderna has shipped a potential vaccine for initial testing. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. As the novel coronavirus spreads around the world, researchers are racing to develop medical treatments to halt it. But for now, hospitals and doctors can only treat the symptoms of COVID-19, helping keep people alive so their bodies can fight off the virus. They're also doing their best to prevent it from spreading to more people. "Usually, just like the flu, it's symptomatic treatment and supportive treatment," Kim Leslie, an emergency-department nursing director at Swedish Hospital in Chicago, told Business Insider. Roughly 80% of coronavirus cases are mild, but 14% are severe — patients have trouble breathing — and 5% are critical, meaning patients are unable to breathe on their own or experience organ failure, according to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Roughly 3% of patients with the virus die. How doctors treat serious coronavirus cases In the more mild cases, doctors may tell a patient to isolate themselves at home, and to only come to a hospital if the disease gets worse (for instance, if the patient has a hard time breathing). The disease's typical symptoms include a fever, cough, headache, and shortness of breath, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At home, people with the virus should avoid contact with other people and with their pets as much as possible, CDC says. They should also try to avoid passing the virus to others in their household, such as by wearing a mask and washing their hands a lot. Here's what treatment looks like for the most serious cases, according to the CDC and the World Health Organization: If patients are having trouble breathing, doctors will give them extra oxygen through a face mask or by inserting a breathing tube in more serious cases. In some severe cases, doctors have used a machine that can replace a patients lungs, known as ECMO, or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. Doctors may give patients antibiotics to fight infections that could come along with COVID-19, the WHO says. But those drugs won't attack the virus itself. In some cases, patients have received drugs designed to fight other viruses, though it's not yet clear which ones work against the new coronavirus. Some patients have gotten drugs usually used against influenza, such as oseltamivir or Tamiflu. Others are getting drugs that fight HIV or viruses similar to the coronavirus. Both the WHO and CDC also emphasize that medical professionals should take steps to prevent the virus from spreading, such as wearing gloves, masks, and goggles. Scientists are working hard on vaccines and drugs to stop the coronavirus Scientists are racing to develop treatments and vaccines to stop the outbreak. Major drug companies like Gilead are working on this, alongside startups like Moderna. In all, there are more than 100 clinical trials underway testing new and existing drugs, according to a recent article in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The WHO says that remdesivir, a virus-fighting drug from Gilead, is "the most promising candidate." The drug is being tested in multiple trials in people in the US and in Asian countries where the disease is spreading, Gilead has said. The drug company said we'll get the first information on how well remdesivir works in early April. The Trump administration had raised worries that a potential coronavirus treatment might not be affordable, when the administration's top health official said he wouldn't take steps to control its price. But the official, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, backtracked a day later. "I have directed my teams that if we do any joint venture with a private enterprise, that we're cofunding the research and development program, that we would ensure there's access to the fruits of that, whether vaccine or therapeutics," Azar said. The US government is involved in many of the vaccine and treatment development efforts. The biotech Moderna has created a potential vaccine for the coronavirus that's set to be tested in people starting in April. The first tests will be focused on whether the vaccine is safe, but it'll take months of additional studies to know if it works. There are about 10 other potential vaccines being developed, according to the JAMA article. Experts previously told Business Insider that the coronavirus could become a permanent disease that we have to contend with, just like the flu. That could mean getting a coronavirus vaccine each year, once one is developed, just like the flu shot, New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said. "As much as this is part of the new normal of diseases, that becomes part of the new normal of response or prevention," Zucker told an audience of public health students and journalists at New York University on Friday. "This has enough of a morbidity, or the potential for mortality, that you would say every season that this is around, you should get this vaccine." Read more: Everything we know about the coronavirus outbreak A day-by-day breakdown of coronavirus symptoms shows how the disease, COVID-19, goes from bad to worse How the buzzy biotech upstart Moderna sped past Big Pharma to develop the first potential coronavirus vaccine in just 42 days The US is gearing up to test the first coronavirus treatments and vaccines. Here's how 6 top drugmakers are racing to tackle an outbreak that's spreading around the world. Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Pathologists debunk 13 coronavirus myths