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Contxto – IDB Lab—the innovation arm of the Inter-American Development Bank—recently announced that it would finance Argentine biotech CASPR with US$150,000. The startup has been working to develop a quick test to detect if a person is infected with Covid-19.
As previously reported, it’s developing a kit that uses CRISPR technology to detect coronavirus, and would work much like a pregnancy test and at a low cost.
But it’s not the only Argentine biotech in the fight against Covid-19.
RadBio makes a rad diagnosis
As everyone should know by now, coronavirus can affect patients differently. Some people, though infected, will show no symptoms. Meanwhile, others will show mild signs and experience discomfort. Others, who are not so lucky, may have to see a physician or head to the hospital.
The elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, and other pre-existing conditions are more vulnerable to the virus.
But what has many scientists baffled are cases wherein an apparently “healthy” person is severely infected by the bug. In that sense, RadBio may make a radical difference.
- Related article: 14 biotechs rewriting Argentina’s startup DNA
The biotech has been working to create a diagnosis to identify if a person who initially caught coronavirus, may experience more severe pulmonary complications later on. All it takes is a pair of blood samples.
Evidently, the advantage is it can lead patients to take better care of themselves if they understand the level of risk they’re exposed to. Likewise, it can help hospitals and doctors identify potentially complex cases beforehand, so that proper attention is provided.
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San Martin-based Inmunova is also taking on coronavirus but through a special serum that it’s developed. Reportedly it can make a meaningful difference in patients still in the early stages of the disease.
In infected patients, its therapeutic serum acts to neutralize Covid-19 through antibodies extracted from an unusual source: horses. According to the biotech, equines produce a large number of antibodies that can fight the virus.
It’s not the first time our hooved friends help us though. This type of treatment has already been used before for treating serpent bites and tetanus infections.
The biotech has completed tests in vitro and it’s yielded promising results. The next step is to run clinical trials with human beings.
Clearly, Inmunova isn’t horsing around when it comes to Covid-19.
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