Tulane Outbreak Daily – September 28, 2020

Featured Headlines

Warnings Issued as Virus Cases Rise in New York – New York Times

Clusters of cases have emerged in Brooklyn and New York City’s northern suburbs, in areas with large Orthodox Jewish communities.

Not Much Progress on PPE ‘Reshoring’ – MedPageToday

U.S. production said to be up, but what will it take to keep it up?

Fauci Says Florida Is ‘Asking For Trouble’ By Fully Reopening Restaurants And Bars – Forbes

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease official, said Monday that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision to fully reopen bars and restaurants in the state is “very concerning” and could lead to an increase in coronavirus infections, which would be more dangerous with the flu season on the horizon.

U.S. Trending In Wrong Direction As Coronavirus Cases Rise In First Week Of Fall – Forbes

The United States posted its highest-average number of cases over a seven-day span since August on Saturday, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, signalling the mounting challenge for the country as it heads into what’s expected to be a difficult flu season.

Germany Has Its Own Dr. Fauci—and Actually Follows His Advice – Bloomberg

(Hello Prof. Dr. Drosten) Christian Drosten helped spare his country from the worst of Covid. Now he’s worried about the second wave. For Drosten, a leading developer of tests for emerging viruses, there was an element of déjà vu. As a doctoral student in Hamburg in 2003, he’d discovered that the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, then terrifying Asia was caused by a coronavirus. Although it was unclear whether a coronavirus was responsible for the Wuhan outbreak, Drosten fully understood the danger.

Fewer than 1 in 10 Americans have antibodies to coronavirus, study finds – Stanford Medicine

In a nationally representative analysis of coronavirus antibodies, researchers also found high rates of infection among Black and Hispanic people, and in densely populated areas. In a nationally representative analysis of coronavirus antibodies, researchers also found high rates of infection among Black and Hispanic people, and in densely populated areas.

Can Face Masks Really Help You Gain Immunity To Covid-19 Coronavirus? – Forbes

So you’ve probably heard that you are supposed to wear a face mask to protect other people from you. That a face covering is a “coughy” filter, as well as a sneezy, talky, singy, panty, and breathy filter. That it’s basically face underwear. That it can block the potential Covid-19 coronavirus-laden stuff coming out of your nose and mouth. That you should consider #Maskingforafriend, as the Pandemic Action Network hashtag goes.

Clinical Considerations

Why do some patients develop COVID-19 pneumonia? – Drug Target Review

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.

Interferon and the Coronavirus – Science Magazine

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).

First RCT in COVID Anticoagulation Says Go Full Dose – MedPageToday

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.

SARS-CoV-2 may also cause brain damage: Amsterdam researchers – Netherland Times

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.

Coronavirus could invade the brain, two Yale studies suggest – Yale Daily News

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]

Covid Insights Come From Dialysis Patients – Bloomberg

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

World Health Organization

Weekly Epi Update SEP 28, 2020

Cumulative Cases: 33,034,598
Cumulative Deaths: 996,342


Confirmed Cases: 33,178,019
Deaths: 998,784

Johns Hopkins

Confirmed Cases: 33,247,206
Deaths: 999,853

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Total cases: 7,095,422
Total deaths: 204,328

Surveillance Headlines


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

USDA earmarks $1 million to study COVID-19 in US beef supply chain – The Cattle Site

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.


One COVID-19 Shot, Two Approaches – Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News

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.

As Johnson & Johnson kick-starts phase 3 COVID-19 test, early data show up its promise – Fierce Biotech

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]

Sociological Impact

A Crisis Within A Crisis: Food Insecurity And COVID-19 – NPR

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.


Published Research

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


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