Experiences of pandemic crisis surge and research-guided responses

September 5, 2020 2:30 - 4:00


While the COVID-19 outbreak is still committing all our societies from various point of view, there is a need to review how some significant experiences of pandemic surge are stimulating research-guided responses.

Marco Confalonieri, from the University of Trieste, coordinated the first protocol on the use of prolonged low-dose glucocorticoids for the most severe pneumonia/ARDS due to COVID-19. Planned when WHO and the major scientific institution were against corticosteroids for COVID-19, this multicentric study showed a reduction of 71% of mortality hazard ratio. Three weeks after the online publication of these results a larger British trial (The Recovery Trial) ultimately demonstrated in 6,000 patients the benefit of prolonged treatment with corticosteroids to reduce mortality, mainly in needing mechanical ventilation.

On the other side of the Ocean, Gerard Criner, Chief of the Temple Lung Center at Philadelphia struggled against COVID-19 pandemic in a populous area of USA, the most hit Country by SARS-CoV-2 infection. At Temple, research is broadly conducted in two areas – basic-science research and clinical research. Basic-science research largely takes place in modern laboratories at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University. Here, Temple scientists seek to better understand the cellular and molecular basis of lung disease and translate those finding into better therapies and methods of prevention. Temple also maintains a strong clinical research program with studies and clinical trials in order to find more effective treatments.

Nicolò de Manzini faced the difficulties and challenges, but also new opportunities with the re-organization of teaching and hospital activities in an academic center of Northern Italy.

Patrick Maxwell is the Chief of the Biomedical Campus at the University of Cambridge, one of the most prestigious in the world. Right there where research and clinical work are usually strictly connected, this was ever more advantageous in time of pandemics.

Mauro Giacca, professor of molecular medicine at the University of Trieste and Professor of cardiovascular sciences in the school of cardiovascular medicine at the King’s College in London. During the COVID-19 outbreak he focused his translational research to look for novel treatments against the SARS-CoV-2 virus infection.

Finally, Philippe Buchy Director of scientific affairs and public health at GSK, Singapore will explain the thrilling rush towards an effective vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Professor Sergio Paoletti, currently President of the Padriciano’s AreaScience Park, will be the Chair of this topical hybrid session.

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