Scientists reveal that some patients who develop severe COVID-19 symptoms mount ineffective immune responses due to a lack of type I interferons, either through genetic mutation or inactivation by auto-reactive antibodies.
Here’s a potentially important paper that’s out in Science and is getting a lot of attention. The wide variation in severity of coronavirus infection has been noted throughout the pandemic, and we already know about a few of the risk factors: age, of course, but also being male, and having pre-existing conditions such as obesity and heart disease (which are, of course, often found in the same patients).
Respiratory outcomes better, but 20-person trial far from conclusive. Therapeutic-level dosing of enoxaparin (Lovenox) improved respiratory outcomes in severe COVID-19, a pilot randomized trial showed.
The novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 may be even more dangerous than thought. In addition to affecting the lungs and various other organs, the virus also affects the brain, according to a study by Amsterdam UMC researchers published in The Lancet Microbe.
Yale researchers found that the coronavirus can directly infect brain cells, potentially eliciting neurological symptoms — such as the loss of taste or smell — observed in 40 to 60 percent of COVID-19 patients. The preprint of a study led by Professor of Immunology Akiko Iwasaki and Director of Yale Center for Genome Analysis Kaya Bilguvar was released on the server bioRxiv earlier this month. In the paper — first-authored by Eric Song MED ‘22 GRD ‘22 and Ce Zhang MED ‘22 GRD ‘22 — they report that several neurological symptoms of COVID-19 could be tied to coronavirus invasion of the central nervous system. [Related Pre-print study]
Fewer than 10% of Americans have antibodies against Covid-19, a telltale sign that they were infected with the novel coronavirus and successfully fought it off. Those are the results from a nationwide study involving more than 28,000 people conducted by researchers at Stanford University. The work was ingenious – the investigators examined the excess blood from patients who were undergoing dialysis for end-stage kidney disease to draw their conclusions.
Official Reporting for September 28, 2020
Cumulative Cases: 33,034,598
Cumulative Deaths: 996,342
Confirmed Cases: 33,178,019
Confirmed Cases: 33,247,206
Total cases: 7,095,422
Total deaths: 204,328
New Jersey: New Jersey Sees Uptick In Confirmed Coronavirus Cases, Communities Preparing For Possible 2nd Wave – NBC
Southern California; Young People Continue Driving New Coronavirus Infections in LA County – NBC
Belgium: Brussels imposes curfew on bars as coronavirus cases soar – ABC News
UK: About 40 universities report coronavirus cases – BBC
India: India’s confirmed coronavirus tally reaches 6 million cases – ABC News
Thailand: Extends Emergency Ahead of Easing Ban on Tourists – Bloomberg
Science and Tech
Reuters reports that the study will track the supply chain from farm to table and will begin in October. The project, led by Texas A&M University, aims to reduce the risk of exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus for consumers and people who work in the meat industry.
VBI Vaccines CSO discusses company’s pair of prospects vs. the pandemic. Just as two heads are proverbially better than one, so two approaches to fighting COVID-19 are likely to double the odds of success against the virus, reasons a Cambridge, MA-based vaccine developer with key operations in Canada and Israel.
Johnson & Johnson has posted an early peek at its phase 1/2 trial data for its pandemic vaccine hopeful that last week started late-stage tests. The data, which are in preprint (so caveats abound), showed its vaccine, Ad26.COV2.S (now also known as JNJ-78436735), producing an immune response at one dose, giving a boost to its late-stage single shot focus. [Related PrePrint Study]
49 Min Audio at the link – Over the summer, like many parents, I was looking to keep my kids productive after their summer jobs and summer sports camps were canceled. Together we came up with a project we’ve undertaken before — collecting books that our well-read and generous neighbors were ready to hand over — and delivering them to students and families who could use something new to read.
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Screening With Specimen Pools: Time to Swim, or Too Deep for Comfort? – Clinical Infectious Diseases
Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: Review of Viral, Host, Environmental Factors – American College of Cardiology
MAIT cell activation and dynamics associated with COVID-19 disease severity – Science Magazine
Neurological manifestations in COVID-19 and its possible mechanism – Journal of Aging
Coping in Quarantine