Keeping tabs on Covid-19: Thermo Fisher Scientific antibody test is granted the CE Mark Certification and pharma cargo companies prepare for temperature-controlled vaccine delivery

Thermo Fisher Scientific and the University of Oxford have created a test to quantify IgG, a critical component to test population-wide vaccination effectiveness

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The University of Oxford has regularly appeared in our updates since July 2020, as its team of researchers leads an ongoing clinical trial for the Covid-19 vaccine. More recently, the university has released news of its collaboration with Thermo Fisher Scientific as it looks to discover an immune Covid-19 response pre- and post-vaccination.

Find out below how Thermo Fisher Scientific and the University of Oxford are working together to combat the Covid-19 pandemic and discover how pharmaceutical logistics companies are preparing for vaccine distribution.

Thermo Fisher Scientific gains CE Mark Certification for its Covid-19 test

Thermo Fisher Scientific has secured CE Mark certification for its Thermo Scientific OmniPATH Combi SARS-CoV-2 IgG ELISA test. The test has been designed to quantitatively measure of immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies to aid clinicians in identifying patients with an immune Covid-19 response pre- and post-vaccination.

Thermo Fisher joined forces with the University of Oxford to harness its academic research capabilities in quantifying IgG antibodies and understanding each patient’s immune response to SARS-CoV-2. The collaborating entities have claimed that having quantitative data on neutralizing antibodies would enable a better understanding of a person’s immune response following exposure to the Covid-19 virus and would support monitoring the effectiveness of vaccines available to the UK population.

Dr. Sarah Walker, Professor of Medical Statistics and Epidemiology at the University of Oxford and Chief Investigator of the National Covid-19 infection survey, said: “Using this test allows us to answer vital questions about the role of previous infection and varying levels of antibody response in protecting people from getting infected again in the future. As we follow individuals over the course of a year, we are repeatedly testing them for both virus and antibodies.”

Mark Stevenson, Executive Vice-President and COO at Thermo Fisher Scientific, said: “Combining the academic research capabilities of world recognized scientists at the University of Oxford with Thermo Fisher’s Dartford UK development and manufacturing facility has expanded our serology portfolio for improved Covid-19 epidemiological studies.”

The collaboration between Thermo Fisher Scientific and the University of Oxford has enabled researchers at the university to deliver a Covid-19 testing capacity of up to 50,000 tests per day.

200 carrier pods acquired for increased demand of Covid-19 vaccine refrigerated storage

SeaCube Containers, a pharmaceutical cargo trade company, has acquired 200 storage containers developed by Carrier and Sensitech to help address the anticipated increase in demand for refrigerated storage capacity and cargo visibility in support of Covid-19 vaccine distribution. Carrier and Sensitech claimed the refrigeration containers provide pharma companies with a reliable deep-frozen solution as the container systems have been kitted-out with telematics, data analytics and cargo monitoring capabilities.

Sensitech technology helps to ensure the container refrigeration units can deliver a temperature control within +/- 0.25-degrees Celsius and temperatures down to negative40-degrees Celsius. The monitoring devices can also track temperatures down to dry ice conditions of negative 95-degrees Celsius.

Kartik Kumar, Vice-President and General Manager, Global Container Refrigeration at Carrier, said: “This solution supports vaccine storage within strict temperature compliance guidelines and allows for vaccines to be in close proximity of wherever they are needed.”

Bob Sappio, CEO of SeaCube, added: “With the rush to get billions of vaccines distributed and administered globally, the cold chain is expected to face some challenges for pharmaceutical companies, distribution centers, retailers and vaccine administrators.

“We believe Carrier Pods monitored by Sensitech can help our customers reduce their risk with mobile cooling solutions that provide added flexibility and insights into vaccine conditions. Since the onset of the pandemic, Carrier has worked closely with SeaCube to ensure that we are able to help meet shipping lines’ demand for refrigerated containers to help them to deliver critical food, medicine and other perishables.”

Ahead of Pharma IQ's annual Temperature Control and Logistics forum, we hone in on the best practices for achieving a successful emergency supply chain management strategy, which will ensure greater cross-value collaboration and enhanced resilience across the supply chain. Download The emergency supply chain playbook for key takeaways on supporting supply chain frameworks in a state of emergency, from disease outbreaks, such as the Covid-19 pandemic, to natural disasters.