Moderna, Inc., (NASDAQ:MRNA) a biotechnology company pioneering messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics and vaccines today announced new clinical data on its bivalent COVID-19 booster platform including data on the Company’s first bivalent booster candidate, mRNA-1273.211, which includes mutations found in the Beta variant of concern, several of which have been persistent in more recent variants of concern including Omicron. A50 µg booster dose ofmRNA-1273.211 demonstrated superiority against Beta, Delta and Omicron variants of concern one month after administration. Superiority continued six months after administration for Beta and Omicron variants of concern as well. A50 µg booster dose ofmRNA-1273.211 was generally well tolerated with a reactogenicity profile comparable to a booster dose of mRNA-1273 at the 50 µg dose level
Eight months ago, President Biden unveiled a plan to deliver coronavirus booster shots to all vaccinated American adults. But today, booster shots are a significant shortcoming in the federal government’s coronavirus response — with no easy answers for why it has happened or what to do about it.
People 50 and older who have had a mild case of covid-19 are 15 percent more likely to develop shingles (herpes zoster) within six month than are those who have not been infected by the coronavirus, according to research published in the journal Open Forum Infectious Diseases . The risk, however, was found to be even greater for older people who were hospitalized because of a more severe covid case, making them 21 percent more likely to develop shingles than those who did not have covid. The findings stem from data on roughly 2 million people — nearly 400,000 diagnosed with covid-19 and 1.6 million who had no coronavirus infection.
COVID-19 mRNA vaccine effectiveness (VE) against infection was 5% to 7% higher when the two primary doses were given at least 7 weeks rather than 3 to 5 weeks apart, according to an observational study of hospital and community healthcare workers (HCWs) in British Columbia published late last week in Open Forum Infectious Diseases.
She’s only 28 years old and was the picture of health before her infections. Polega, who graduated from law school last year, is now suffering from chest pain, hypertensive spikes, hand numbness and numerous other symptoms.
Worldwide, 49% of COVID-19 survivors reported persistent symptoms 4 months after diagnosis, estimates a meta-analysis of 31 studies published late last week in The Journal of Infectious Diseases.
Official Reporting for April 15, 2022
World Health Organization
Weekly Epi Update April 12, 2022 (latest release)
New Cases: 404,271
Confirmed Cases: 500,186,525
Confirmed Cases: 505,473,996
Total cases: 80,476,479 (+35,212 New Cases)
Total deaths: 986,123 (+373 New Deaths)
Science and Tech
The race between pathogens and their hosts is a major evolutionary driver, where both reshuffle their genomes to overcome and reorganize the defenses for infection, respectively. Evolutionary theory helps formulate predictions on the future evolutionary dynamics of SARS-CoV-2, which can be monitored through unprecedented real-time tracking of SARS-CoV-2 population genomics at the global scale. Here we quantify the accelerating evolution of SARS-CoV-2 by tracking the SARS-CoV-2 mutation globally, with a focus on the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of the spike protein determining infection success. We estimate that the > 820 million people that had been infected by October 5, 2021, produced up to 1021 copies of the virus, with 12 new effective RBD variants appearing, on average, daily. Doubling of the number of RBD variants every 89 days, followed by selection of the most infective variants challenges our defenses and calls for a shift to anticipatory, rather than reactive tactics involving collaborative global sequencing and vaccination.
Americans are abandoning their masks. They’re done with physical distancing. And, let’s face it, some people are just never going to get vaccinated. Yet a lot can still be done to prevent COVID-19 infections and curb the pandemic. A growing coalition of epidemiologists and aerosol scientists say that improved ventilation could be a powerful tool against the coronavirus — if businesses are willing to invest the money. “The science is airtight,” said Joseph Allen, director of the Healthy Buildings program at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “The evidence is overwhelming.”
COVID-19 testing has become more convenient and accessible, but with the pandemic still causing more than 30,000 new infections in the U.S. on average each week, having more ways to detect SARS-CoV-2 can go a long way toward eventually containing COVID-19.
Where do you typically keep your high-quality, medical-style masks?
A) In several brown paper bags marked with the days of the week, lined up on the window sill.
B) Hanging on hooks near the door.
C) Tucked in a plastic bag in my purse or backpack.
D) Sometimes I find one stuffed in my pocket or on the floor of my car.
If you answered “D,” don’t be embarrassed. I live with mask chaos at my house too. Masks are everywhere — on hooks and doorknobs, in drawers, stuffed in coat pockets and backpacks and yes, I confess, I have, on occasion, grabbed a mask from the floor of my car. (Please don’t do this. A study by Clorox found the germiest place in your car is the driver’s side floor mat. The front seat cup holder was not far behind.)
Psychological and Sociological Impact
A new study from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) finds that alcohol-related deaths in 2020 were so high that, for 16- to 64-year-olds, they exceeded the number of deaths from covid-19. Previously, the average annual increase was a little more than 2 percent; between 2019 and 2020, it skyrocketed to more than 25 percent. The largest rise in mortality occurred for people 35 to 44 years old, though rates of death associated with alcohol increased across all age groups.
After two years of working from home during the pandemic, and plenty of false starts, employees are officially heading back to work as the R.T.O., or return to office, is in full swing. Roughly 60 percent of U.S. workers who could work from home were still signing in remotely as of January, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center, as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus set back R.T.O. plans. But now companies like Google are insisting that their workers return to the office on hybrid work schedules.
After two years of isolation, the return to offices has been a master class in awkwardness. Recently, Katherine, a consultant at an investment bank in New York, met a colleague for the first time. He went for a fist-bump four times in the same interaction. “He was like, ‘Hell yeah! That’s great, Katherine!’ Fist bump. ‘Yeah, I’ll see you later!” Fist bump. ‘Okay, I’m going to head out!’ Fist bump,” she said. “The fourth time, I looked up at him and was like, ‘Are you sure?’ and he just held it there.”
Short-term Adverse Events After the Third Dose of the BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine in Adults 60 Years or Older – JAMA
Misinformation, Disinformation, and Conspiracy Theories
Misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines and fertility has propagated online despite the vaccines’ clear safety profile. Fortunately, those considering having kids can relax when it comes to these crucial shots. These claims lack any realistic basis. As a medical doctor and a COVID-19 genetics researcher, I’d like to discuss what the evidence says.