While Covid-19 increasingly transforms daily reality, life science companies have followed pace, are adapting and are driving change – including members at Medicon Village. While some members were quick to support the medical need, others found ways to continue their cutting-edge research. So, which member´s key highlights belong to those making headlines during the pandemic? Which member is Elon Musk being compared to? And who are contributing to developing a Covid-19 vaccine?
The possibilities to halt and cure challenging or untreatable disease, which today lacks efficient treatment, is enthusiastically being explored by Medicon Village members. Their research is increasingly breaking new grounds within diagnostics, prevention, treatment and care. And their findings may lead to drug candidates or cutting-edge technology in the fields of medicine, biotech and medtech.
Combining a computer with the brain
Ultrathin electrodes in the brain to treat pain and neurodegenerative disorders, like Parkinson´s disease, and techniques to learn the workings of the brain. These are two tracks that Jens Schouenborg and his teams follow.
Jens Schouenborg and his team´s research has been making headlines. He is a professor at Lund university and head of Neuronano Research Center (NRC), located at Medicon Village. He is also the founder of Neuronano AB, which collaborates with NRC and clinical researchers.
Developing ultrathin electrodes that don´t harm the brain and that don´t lose the connection with the neurons over a long period of time has posed major challenges for the researchers at NRC. And their efforts are paying off.
Instead of the stiff electrodes as the ones used today, they have developed flexible electrodes that move like seagrass in water. This means they follow the brains movement when we, for example, breath, and thereby rarely lead to an inflammatory reaction and cell death. Due to the soluble coating, they also limit the damage when lowering the electrodes into the brain. See how on Swedish TV.
The team of researchers can register activity in a tissue that is similar to an authentic situation. Something the innovator Elon Musk also has shown with his team at Neuralink. The comparison of the two made various headlines, such as in Swedish the press NyTeknik and SvD.
Covid-19 vaccine development
Some Medicon Village members have the potential to develop a vaccine targeted at Covid-19. The latest headline in the string of news was from the member Iconovo. They have joined forces with the immunotherapy company ISR to commercialize a Covid-19 dry powder vaccine.
While IRS develops the powder, Iconovo provides a disposable inhalator. If the combination makes it to market after the clinical trials starting in the second half of 2021, it offers many benefits – such as not requiring refrigerated storage or needle jabs. See how it may be used in THIS video from Swedish television.
Also the members Amniotics and Red Glead Discovery were featured on Swedish television. Amniotics showed their new source of MSCs to treat Covid-19. MSCs, mesenchymal stem cells, are adult stem cells found in multiple tissues. One of Amniotics´ products is tailored to repair a specific organ of choice. This may lead to an increased chance of successful treatment.
Red Glead Discovery were featured, as they are developing a Covid-19 vaccine for the research company Immunor.
Many Medicon Village members continue to make progress. And many members have been acknowledged for their progress also in the past.
Find more about their acknowledgements and cutting edge research in our digital brochure. We created it in collaboration with a handful of members and JS Sverige.
Written by Tanja Jensen, science writer
Photo by K. Ruona