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Alabama's Bioscience COVID Relief Efforts

2 Sep 2021 3:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

BIO Alabama submitted the following letter to Governor Ivey, highlighting the tremendous work of our members in COVID-19 relief efforts.

Dear Governor Ivey,

As concern grows over the advances of the Delta variant COVID strain, we wanted to share the tremendous contributions Alabamians in our bioscience industry have made in this urgent fight. We live in a state that literally took man to the moon, and innovation is in our core, dating back to the agricultural technologies Dr. George Washington Carver developed at Tuskegee University. Now, our state’s bioscience community is assisting our neighbors, the US, and the rest of the world to curb this powerful pandemic’s destructive path by studying the virus, developing vaccines, and discovering new tools and treatments.

  • Avanti Polar Lipids (part of Croda International plc) utilized its Lipid Nanoparticle technology to enable the rapid clinical development of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. Avanti was the first company to supply clinical and commercial quantities of this critical lipid technology that enables the targeted release of the mRNA vaccine to muscle tissue.
  • Moderna selected the vial produced by SiO2 Materials Science for its unique composition and manufacturing process. SiO2 increased vial production in 4 months to levels that would have taken 18-24 months for traditional vials. Without Avanti’s and SiO2’s technology and manufacturing capacity, many more lives may have been lost to the virus.
  • Data from a powerful artificial intelligence program developed at the Precision Medicine Institute of the University of Alabama at Birmingham resulted in the first dose-sparing cocktail of remdesivir, the only approved treatment for COVID.
  • At Auburn University, teams developed biosensors for rapid COVID-19 testing and reengineered standard CPAP machines into functional emergency ventilators.
  • The University of South Alabama collaborated with partners to repurpose their 3D printing capabilities to produce PPE for local healthcare workers.
  • The HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology’s powerful sequencing technology tracked the shift in COVID variants, noting the predominance of the Delta variant by June 2021.
  • The University of Alabama spearheaded a vaccination equity campaign, focusing on the Black Belt, which currently leads the state in vaccination status.
  • The University of Alabama at Huntsville collaborated with partners, including Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Alabama Supercomputer Center and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, to identify anti-COVID-19 chemicals and drug candidates.
  • CFD Research is developing a new class of COVID-19 drugs with the Defense Health Agency. 
  • Southern Research has conducted >$30 million of COVID-related research, using high-throughput screening to refine treatments, co-create vaccines, and develop assays for variant detection.

As we continue to wage war against this unrelenting virus, we must celebrate the meaningful innovations Alabama is making so that we can emerge on the other side with confidence in each other and strength together. Governor Ivey, please share these major contributions with your staff and other elected officials so that we can appreciate the united contributions of our fellow Alabamians.


Rachel Lane, PhD, RD

Executive Director, BIO Alabama

Connecting the Bioscience Ecosystem in Alabama

BIO Alabama
100 Drake Dr., Unit 688
Normal, AL 35762

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