2021-07-01 General

Testing You might have heard of “Lateral Flow Tests”. They are a type of rapid test which has been deployed widely in the UK. This study evaluated six different brands of lateral flow tests and found that they are less sensitive than PCR tests, but most of them are still pretty good. Long COVID This… Continue reading 2021-07-01 General

2021-06-19 General

Treatments This preprint might be important. It describes a novel treatment for COVID-19 (and possibly for all viruses). The active ingredient (SLR) activates a molecule called RIG-I, which in turn gooses the production of interleukin-1, which is a cytokine, part of the immune system associated with inflammation. Basically, SLR revs up the innate immune system… Continue reading 2021-06-19 General

2021-06-16 General

Vaccines Oh, ouch! CureVac has really crappy preliminary Phase 3 results: 49%. CureVac is an mRNA vax, and they had made all kinds of partnerships with really big pharma companies to manufacture it. They were supposed to deliver 300M this year and 1B next year. That hurts. A survey says that about one in five… Continue reading 2021-06-16 General

2021-06-15 General

Vaccines A few days ago, I wrote about how the world was going to have more than enough vaccine for everybody by the end of the year, and listed all the vaccines which I thought would be approved in time to help people this year? Well, one that had not even been on my radar… Continue reading 2021-06-15 General

2021-06-08 General

Vaccines There are a fair number of studies about how many antibodies a given vaccine induces the patient to make, but this study seems to say that a lot of the antibodies which a patient produces in response to a vaccine aren’t actually useful at killing the virus. The antibodies you produce after getting a… Continue reading 2021-06-08 General

2021-06-05/06 General

Vaccinations I love this chart: Yes, Canada has passed 60% of its population with at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Treatments Regeneron has gotten FDA approval for a lower-dose, injected (as opposed to transfused) version of its monoclonal antibody COVID-19 treatment, called REGEN-COV. This might be a big deal. The stuff works, but… Continue reading 2021-06-05/06 General

2021-06-01 General

Vaccines Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunizations has decreed that it’s okay to get an mRNA shot after an AstraZeneca shot. They had been waiting for the efficacy results from a big UK study, but the study has been delayed another month, and they (along with many other immunology boards) finally said “screw it, we’re… Continue reading 2021-06-01 General

2021-05-26 General

Treatments This article explains how scientists can now make mini organs — like mini-lungs and mini-hearts — and infect them with COVID-19 to see what happens. This has the potential to make it much faster to try out different treatments. 😲 This paper reports that a nasal antibody spray can help hamsters recover from COVID-19.… Continue reading 2021-05-26 General

2021-04-19 General

Side effects Bad news for anybody who enjoys erections: COVID can cause erectile dysfunction. Vaccines There are starting to be a few reports of inflammation of the heart in young people after getting an mRNA vaccine. This is very early, so it might be nothing… but it also might be something. Aaaannnd this paper talks… Continue reading 2021-04-19 General