First antiviral pill for COVID-19 developed through Emory University’s approach to bringing solutions to market

The news that a drug has been developed that appears to significantly reduce the risk of hospitalization or death from COVID-19, understandably garnered international attention. While most of the coverage centered on Merck, dig a bit deeper and one learns that Emory University researchers developed molnupiravir which Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics have licensed.

Defense department launches Centers of Excellence at 2 HBCUs

The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), through the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD(R&E)), announced awards totaling $15 million for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to establish Centers of Excellence (COEs) in Biotechnology and Materials Science. The COEs will provide training to underrepresented students pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, and will also provide internships at defense laboratories while also offering training to K-12 students to strengthen the talent pool entering the STEM pipeline.

Biotech industry diversity examined

The biotechnology industry has made progress in increasing representation, especially in pre-revenue, smaller and private companies, however, diversity and inclusion programming is still in the nascent stages at most companies responding to a survey by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO).

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