A bit more in depth look at the Moderna FDA data.

1. 94% effective at preventing COVID-19

That matches the earlier data and public statements
2. Prevents severe COVID-19

Zero cases in the vaccinated group. 30 severe cases of COVID-19 in the placebo group.
3. Worked the same in older adults and other subgroups

That matches the earlier data and public statements.
4. Evidence of prevention of asymptomatic infections.

This is interesting. The study was not designed to test this, but they had swab tests scheduled for the day of the second immunization. And there were substantially fewer asymptomatic infections in the vaccinated people. (4/6
It will be important to gather A LOT more data about asymptomatic infections to understand how well the vaccines prevent transmission, but it is encouraging to see this effect, and encouraging to see it so early after the 1st immunization. (5/6)

(This kind of data on asymptomatic infections is a lot more expensive to gather that symptomatic infections, because people have to be tested for virus repeatedly throughout a study. So it wasn't part of the main Pfizer and Moderna Phase 3 trials) (6/6)

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More from @profshanecrotty

29 Nov
Got lots of interest in my RNA vaccine explainer yesterday. The most common follow up questions generally fell into two categories, well stated in the tweet below. I will answer both. 1/5

First, to paraphrase: “Isn’t it strange for the immune system to deal with a viral protein from RNA in host cells?” Actually, the human immune system has spent millions of years evolving to recognize viruses this way. (Really, vertebrates have spent 500 million years doing this!)
Viruses regularly express their proteins on infected human cells, and the immune system specifically recognizes those foreign viral molecules. Indeed, many viruses are RNA viruses (they use RNA as their genetic material!), so the immune system is specifically good at this job.
Read 5 tweets
27 Nov
1/ Are RNA vaccines safe? I have gotten this question a lot lately, and it is a good question.
2/ First: RNA is messages. At any moment a human cell has 5000+ different RNA messages, and they are all temporary messages, like post-it notes that get torn up by the cells within minutes or hours after being read.
3/ Or, actually, RNA is like snapchat messages that expire. RNA vaccines do NOT become a permanent part of your body. They are temporary messages instructing cells to make one viral protein temporarily.
Read 9 tweets
27 Nov
1/ This paper is the first significant evidence that recent infection with a common cold coronavirus could have a functional cross protective effect against severe COVID-19. “Recent endemic coronavirus infection is associated with less severe COVID-19"
2/ The possibility of pre-existing (partial) immunity to COVID-19 has been a hot topic. The presence of cross-reactive memory T cells in a fraction of the population opened the possibility of some degree of pre-existing immunity in the population. nature.com/articles/s4157…
3/ Cross-reactive T cells can provide some degree of protective immunity in flu (Sridhar et al., 2013; Wilkinson et al., 2012). The different ways in which such immunity may manifest for SARS-CoV-2 infection are discussed in: nature.com/articles/s4157…
Read 7 tweets
27 Nov
1/ This is one of the most interesting pre-prints I have seen this past month. I consider this study in two parts.
2/ In the first part, Nussenzweig and colleagues show compelling data that memory B cells specific for RBD (the target of neutralizing antibodies against SARS2) undergo affinity maturation over time.
3/ They demonstrate this by cloning mAbs from the memory B cells, sequencing the B cells to show SHM, and characterizing the improved binding capacity of the mAbs.
Read 7 tweets
27 Nov
1/ This is a fantastic new paper in Cell from @PepperMarion showing immune memory to SARS-CoV-2 three months post-infection.
2/ I particularly like that @PepperMarion made the effort to measure memory CD4 T cells and memory CD8 T cells and antibodies and memory B cells in the same people, instead of just a single component of immune memory.
3/ And yes, I am also happy the results are consistent with our pre-print examining COVID-19 immune memory out to 8 months.😀
Read 4 tweets
23 Nov
1/ A third COVID-19 vaccine with efficacy! 3 for 3 in phase 3 vaccine clinical trials! Extraordinary successes for science.

2/ The AZ Oxford COVID-19 interim efficacy results are 70% overall. That is substantially less than the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, over short time periods.
3/ There was a small AZ Oxford substudy with a half-dose 1st immunization and an interim efficacy of 90%. That study is much smaller than other studies, and details were not provided (cases etc.), so I don’t make much of that number for now.
Read 6 tweets

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