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Home Science Coronavirus News Roundup, February 13 - February 19

Coronavirus News Roundup, February 13 – February 19

The gadgets under are highlights from the free e-newsletter, “Smart, useful, science stuff about COVID-19.” To obtain e-newsletter points day by day in your inbox, join right here.

Why are SARS-CoV-2 an infection charges and COVID-19 hospitalizations dropping so quickly today within the U.S.? A 2/17/21 story by Derek Thompson at The Atlantic reviews that it’s a mix of higher social distancing, elevated masks-carrying, seasonality, a rising variety of individuals within the U.S. who’ve developed antibodies after an infection with the virus (15% to 30% of U.S. adults), and the rising variety of individuals within the U.S. who’ve been vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19. “We’re accelerating toward a moment, sometime this spring, when half of American adults should have some kind of coronavirus protection,” Thompson concludes.

For a fast dive into key outcomes from massive-scale COVID-19 vaccine research carried out by Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Novavax, Johnson and Johnson, and Gamaleya Sputnik V, see Yale University immunologist Akiko Iwasaki’s 2/7/21 Twitter thread that includes comparative tables, made by Yale Medical School college students. “All the tables here…indicate the # COVID-related death in the vaccinated as the right-most column (which is ZERO).” She provides: “With all these vaccines…we can bring down the number of severe & lethal Covid. The variants are here, but current vaccines still protect from severe disease & vaccines for the variants are coming. We will get through this!”

A 2/16/21 story by Ariana Remmel for Nature contains bar charts that illustrate the frequency of negative effects reported to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control amongst individuals who have obtained the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in opposition to COVID-19. The chart exhibits that fatigue is reported by 29% and 50% of individuals receiving their first- and second-dose, respectively; complications are reported by 26% and 42% of individuals receiving their first- and second-dose, respectively; and fever is reported by 7% and 25% of individuals receiving their first- and second-dose, respectively. People report extra negative effects to this vaccine and to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine than they do to flu vaccines, based on an infectious-illness specialist on the University of Washington School of Medicine, the story states. The piece additionally states that the frequency of anaphylactic (extreme, allergic, and life-threatening) reactions to the Moderna vaccine is three per million doses, and it’s 30 per 3 million doses up to now for the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. All these people have “fully recovered,” per the story. Anaphylaxis is treatable if caught rapidly, based on Paul Offit, a vaccine specialist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia who’s quoted within the story. Remmel writes: “There is no question that the current vaccines are effective and safe. The risk of severe reaction to a COVID-19 jab, say researchers, is outweighed by the protection it offers against the deadly coronavirus.”

Epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina of the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston revealed a 2/14/21 submit at her Your Local Epidemiologist website that summarizes the newest proof for medicine to deal with COVID-19. The submit is predicated on a 280-web page report on COVID-19 therapy choices revealed 2/11/21 by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Two choices proven by research to work up to now: steroids known as corticosteroids (particularly, they defend in opposition to loss of life from extreme COVID-19 and reduce how lengthy you need to keep in an intensive care unit), and the anti-viral drug remdesivir (it’s protecting for hospitalized sufferers who want supplemental oxygen, aside from ventilators). The submit features a 12/10/20 chart revealed within the British Medical Journal that summarizes the experimental outcomes of most of the medicine examined in opposition to COVID-19. The submit additionally summarizes the proof for “drugs that are making headlines,” but it surely suggests there at the moment shouldn’t be sufficient proof to help giving them to COVID-19 sufferers (e.g. ivermectin, arthritis drug tocilizumab, and bronchial asthma drug budesonide).

COVID-19 may need humbled Peter Diamandis, entrepreneur and founding father of the X Prize Foundation, he suggests in a 2/12/21 weblog submit. Takeaway: regardless of excessive-high quality pre-arrival and day by day testing, a gathering of what appears like about 100 individuals for a convention was a superspreader occasion that contaminated a few quarter of attendees. A bunch of audiovisual and manufacturing technicians who saved to themselves and reportedly wore masks all through the occasion was spared. Diamandis writes: “Masks Work.”

The “bona fide nerdy girls” at Dear Pandemic (particularly, they’re an interdisciplinary all-feminine workforce of researchers and clinicians who work in nursing, well being coverage, and epidemiology amongst different fields) at the moment are publishing Spanish-language COVID-19 info at a Facebook web page known as Querida Pandemia.

The UnbiasedSciPod, a podcast co-hosted by Jessica Steier, a public well being researcher and knowledge scientist, and Andrea Love, an immunologist and microbiologist, posts some useful graphics at its Instagram web page, together with this one on 2/11/21 displaying up to date U.S. Centers for Disease Control suggestions that pertain to individuals who’ve been vaccinated and later uncovered to somebody considered contaminated with SARS-CoV-2 or to have COVID-19. If you fall inside two-weeks and three months of receiving your ultimate vaccine dose and haven’t any signs following contact with somebody who has the virus or COVID-19, you now not are required to quarantine, per the submit. But you continue to “must continue wearing a mask and practicing social distancing,” it states.

You may get pleasure from “I’ve never tried your idea, and now everything is on fire, and that’s how I know your idea is bad,” by Eli Grober (1/17/21) in McSweeney’s.

This is an opinion and evaluation article.

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