Researchers Shift Focus to Progress Novel Vaccine Solutions

NEW YORK, Oct. 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- There are legitimate concerns of an impending second wave to the current pandemic, and it is unclear how soon a full reopening of the economy will be possible. In the meantime, effective and widespread testing is necessary to mitigate the impact and spread of the virus. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) emphasized the importance of testing capabilities back in March. According to the FDA's announcement, it has issued the fourth diagnostic related Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to Thermo Fisher for its TaqPath Combo Kit. FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D explained that "we have been engaging with test developers and encouraging them to come to the FDA and work with us. Since the beginning of this outbreak, more than 80 test developers have sought our assistance with development and validation of tests they plan to bring through the Emergency Use Authorization process." Since the pandemic has begun, various companies from a vast field of industries, including pharmaceuticals, medical device innovators and others have all made various declarations regarding products or services related to the pandemic, with testing kits and vaccines at the center of attention. Sunshine Biopharma Inc. (OTC: SBFM), SCWorx Corp. (NASDAQ: WORX), Vystar Corp. (OTC: VYST), RELIEF THERAPEUTICS Holding AG (OTC: RLFTF), Cocrystal Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: COCP

The development of a vaccine for the virus will be a key turning point. Numerous recent developments have been made in regard to the future effectiveness of a vaccine's administration. For example, earlier last week, the Trump administration announced that it had reached a deal with CVS Health and Walgreens to administer vaccines to the elderly and staff in long-term care facilities. The vaccine will be free and available in all long-term care facilities such as nursing homes, assisted living facilities, residential care homes and adult family homes, the Department of Health and Human Services explained. "Ensuring access to COVID-19 vaccines, particularly among our most vulnerable populations, will be critical to saving lives and helping our nation recover from the pandemic," Walgreens President John Standley said in a statement, according to a report by CNBC.

Sunshine Biopharma Inc. (OTC: SBFM) just announced breaking news that, "it has entered into an Agreement with the University of Georgia for the purposes of working together to advance the development of Sunshine Biopharma's recently announced Anti-Coronavirus lead compound, SBFM-PL4. The goal of this cutting-edge collaboration is to develop SBFM-PL4, a protease inhibitor, as a treatment for Coronavirus infections. This new treatment is based on the technology described in Sunshine Biopharma's recently filed patent application covering small molecules which can be used to treat Coronavirus infections. Sunshine's SBFM-PL4, will be put through a series of in vitro tests to evaluate its specific inhibitory activity against the SARS-CoV-2 papain-like protease (PLpro), one of two Coronavirus encoded proteases essential for viral replication. Following the initial in vitro studies, SBFM-PL4 will be moved forward to the cell culture testing stage and assessment in Coronavirus infected mice before entering human clinical trials.

'We are delighted to be working with the University of Georgia and Dr. Scott Pegan and his team of Coronavirus experts who share our vision of developing a treatment that would make a difference in the fight against the pandemic,' said Dr. Steve Slilaty, CEO of Sunshine Biopharma.

About Sunshine Biopharma's Coronavirus Treatment: Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the causative agent of COVID-19, the current ongoing pandemic that has claimed the lives of over 1,000,000 people worldwide since it first appeared in December 2019. There are currently no drugs that can effectively arrest replication of the virus in people who have contracted the illness. On May 22, 2020, Sunshine Biopharma filed a provisional patent application for a library of molecules which were designed to inhibit the Coronavirus proteases, thus shutting down the ability of the virus to multiply and cause illness."

SCWorx Corp. (NASDAQ: WORX) reported back in April a confirmation regarding previously disclosed plans to distribute COVID-19 Rapid Testing Units.  Previously, the company announced receiving a committed purchase order from Rethink My Healthcare, a U.S.-based virtual healthcare network, for two million COVID-19 Rapid Testing Units, with provision for additional weekly orders of 2 million units for 23 weeks, valued at $35M per week. Under the previously disclosed purchase order, SCWorx will supply Rethink My Healthcare with IgM/IgG Rapid Detection Kits. SCWorx continues to anticipate receiving the first 2 million rapid detection kits within approximately two weeks and looks forward to providing incremental updates as they become available.

Vystar Corp. (OTCQB: VYST) reported in August that it has engaged Strategic Link Assoc. to manage the supply chain, logistics and manufacturing of Vystar's Rx3000®, a hybrid ultraviolet (UV) light and HEPA filter air purification system that is FDA certified as a Class II Medical Device, designed for use in healthcare facilities. The relationship with Strategic Link and its supply and manufacturing network enables significantly increased production capacity to meet the growing demand for RXair® purification products that reduce airborne viruses and bacteria, such as coronavirus strains, influenza and pneumonia. "As facility managers work to ensure the air in their facilities is safe, we are fielding requests for far more Rx3000 units than we could produce in-house," stated Steve Rotman, CEO of Vystar. "Strategic Link has brought together high quality, experienced suppliers and manufacturers who are considered essential businesses and have continued operations during the COVID shutdown. This will enable us to have a reliable supply chain and a top quality finished product that is 'Made in the USA'." 

RELIEF THERAPEUTICS Holding AG (OTCQB: RLFTF) and NeuroRx, Inc. have established supply chain agreements and ordered sufficient drug substance (RLF-100TM) to prepare to treat 1 million patients with COVID-19, should the pandemic continue.  Dr. Raghuram (Ram) Selvaraju, Chairman of the Board of Relief said: "We are living in unprecedented times, which call for flexibility and innovative thinking, in and outside the clinic. Therefore, we have taken the necessary steps to match the rapid clinical development of RLF-100TM by establishing a supply chain capable of scaling up to meet the urgent medical needs of critical COVID-19 patients."

Cocrystal Pharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: COCP) provided back in May an update on the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic on its preclinical and clinical development programs. "We have reprioritized development activities to accelerate the advancement of our preclinical COVID-19 program, which we recently established as a result of our license agreements with Kansas State University Research Foundation (KSRF)," commented Dr. Gary Wilcox, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cocrystal. "Like many of our peers, we have been working to minimize the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our operations. While we have been able to mitigate some of the risks, the worldwide impact on supply chains has resulted in a delay to our fully owned influenza A virus program. The full impact of COVID-19 on our development programs remains uncertain, but our team is determined to advance preclinical and clinical development programs across our pipeline as quickly and efficiently as possible."

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