Infiuss Health’s Research Efforts Towards The Control and Eradication of Monkeypox

Article By Samantha Trolli IN News - 28th July, 2022

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      Monkeypox is a viral zoonotic disease endemic in central and western Africa. The outbreak began in May of 2022, when multiple cases of monkeypox were detected in several non-endemic countries. Since our last post about monkeypox, cases have risen and spread. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, as of July 26th, 2022, there are over 19,000 reported cases in 76 countries globally. Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recently declared the evolving monkeypox outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. 

      Here are the five proven actions the WHO is taking to stop the spread of the virus.
  1. Raising awareness and testing regimen
  2. Stopping human to human transmission
  3. Protecting frontline workers
  4. Utilizing countermeasures
  5. Accelerating research

      In times like this, research is crucial to containing outbreaks and developing treatments. Studies are currently underway to further understand the virus, ways of infection, and transmission patterns. Sero-epidemiology is a sector of research which studies the use of data on the prevalence of biomarkers on infections and vaccinations. This sector of research is used to understand an infection before vaccination and further understand the effectiveness of vaccinations on the infection. 

      Serological assays, also known as antibody tests, are an important part of sero-epidemiology. These types of tests are used to detect the presence of antibodies or antigens in a patient's sample, and in so doing, one is able to know if they have been exposed to, or recovered from an infection. The need for more serological assays, with regards to monkeypox, was highlighted at the WHO Research and Development Blueprint consultation on the 2nd & 3rd of June 2022. 

      At Infiuss Health, are invested in the role that accelerating research plays in stopping the spread of monkeypox. We also recognize the need for more serological assays. For this reason, we are partnering with a UK governmental research organization and a WHO collaborating center for biological standardization to source convalescent monkeypox plasma for the development of monkeypox antibodies. 

      These samples will be used to create a pool of reference material, which will help further the development of a reference standard for the development and harmonization of reliable serological assays to characterize the abundance, neutralization efficacy, and duration of monkeypox antibodies in virus-exposed individuals. In other words, a reference antibody standard will be developed to evaluate the immune response caused by current and developing vaccines against Monkeypox. 

      Together, we can act immediately, and with urgency, utilizing every opportunity to anticipate, control, and stop the spread of a virus we still have much to learn about. 

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