2021-03-08 General

VOC A preprint says that people who had B.1.351 had antibodies that worked well against COVID Classic and also against P.1. This is outstanding news — it means that the counter-B.1.351 boosters being developed will work against the scaries! There is yet another study which says that, while the effectiveness of mRNA vaccines (Pfizer in… Continue reading 2021-03-08 General

2021-03-06 General

Treatments Fluvoxamine — an old anti-depressant — is being tested as a treatment for COVID. VOCs Yet another paper says that our vaccines (in this case, Moderna and Novavax) work against B.1.1.7.

2021-03-05 General

VOCs They found a variant of the B.1.1.7 in Oregon which developed a the same mutation as one they have found in scary variants elsewhere, the E484K mutation. Yes, this is a variant of a variant. I would like it if we came up with a different naming scheme. There’s a leaked story (hint: perhaps… Continue reading 2021-03-05 General

2021-03-04 General

Vaccines Canada is probably going to approve the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in the next few days. That will make four vaccines, five if you count the Serum Institute of India’s vaccine as different from AstraZeneca. There is an article in the Economist which says that the differences in reported vaccine efficacy is really… Continue reading 2021-03-04 General

2021-03-03 General

Vaccines The Novavax vaccine — which had ~90% efficacy against B.1.1.7 — had only 60% efficacy against HIV-negative patients, most of whom had B.1.351. As a side effect, the study showed that having had COVID Classic didn’t give you any protection against B.1.351. Yikes. There is a report that, while rare, some delayed (5 days… Continue reading 2021-03-03 General

2021-03-02 General

Variants The New York Times has an article talking about the naming of variants. Basically, it’s hard to make strain names memorable while also avoiding place names, people’s names, and names of animals. 🙁 There are a few ways that scientists figure out how resistant a variant is to a vaccine. One is to look… Continue reading 2021-03-02 General

2021-03-01 General

Vaccines An article in the New York Times reports on studies which show that one dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine gives good protection. An article in the Washington Post says that the Israeli vaccine rollout — which has now reached 50% of its citizens and almost 90 percent of people over 50 — shows that… Continue reading 2021-03-01 General

2021-02-28 General

Long COVID There is a good thread by Dr. Iwasaki, a prominent virologist, suggesting possible mechanisms for Long-COVID and a clever vaccine trial which could help shed light on which mechanism it is. The possibilities she lists are: A persistent viral reservoir, i.e. the virus is hiding somewhere (like maybe the Central Nervous System) Inactive… Continue reading 2021-02-28 General

2021-02-27 General

Diagnostics A paper in Blood Advances describes some markers which a machine learning algorithm says indicate how likely a COVID-19 patient is to have a severe case. This is interesting for two reasons: It can tell who should get really aggressive treatment. Which elements of the blood are important can give clues to why COVID-19… Continue reading 2021-02-27 General

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