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Personalized Medicine? Not Today

Two years ago, Pfizer announced it had partnered with biotech company Celldex to develop a brain cancer vaccine. At the time, many people thought the move heralded the beginning of pharmaceutical companies developing personalized treatments for patients, says Robert Langreth on Forbes' Treatments blog. But now Pfizer has dissolved the partnership, leaving Celldex to try and develop the drug on its own. Instead of aiming broadly at tumors, the vaccine was supposed to be aimed at about 40 percent of brain glioblastoma patients, Langreth says. "Exactly why Pfizer dropped the vaccine is unclear," he adds. "Certainly a definitive trial would have been difficult to perform, and the odds of success are slim thanks to the aggressive nature of glioblastoma. The early trials of the vaccine all had no control group, making the seemingly good survival times reported difficult to interpret."

The Scan

Vaccine Update Recommended

A US Food and Drug Administration panel recommends booster vaccines be updated to target Omicron, CNBC reports.

US to Make More Vaccines for Monkeypox Available

The US is to make nearly 300,000 vaccine doses available in the coming weeks to stem the spread of human monkeypox virus, according to NPR.

Sentence Appealed

The Associated Press reports that Swedish prosecutors are appealing the sentence given to a surgeon once lauded for transplanting synthetic tracheas but then convicted of causing bodily harm.

Genome Biology Papers on COVID-19 Effector Genes, Virtual ChIP-seq, scDART

In Genome Biology this week: proposed COVID-19 effector genes, method to predict transcription factor binding patterns, and more.