I don't like to dwell on negatives, but something important happened recently that I'd like to make public.

Shortly before Christmas, @mugecevik made a complaint to my university about me. When asked for details, she didn't provide any. My employer took a dim view of the matter.
I thought that was pretty strange, but laughed the matter off. After all, the complaint didn't go anywhere and I was supported by my university.

But last week, she made a complaint to a publisher about an article I recently wrote. It was this article:
She listed an astonishing 12 complaints (yes, 12!), said the article was grossly inaccurate, and asked for the article to be retracted.

However, no errors of fact were identified, so the article has not been retracted.
I've been an academic for a long time - longer than my fresh-faced profile picture might suggest.

Not once in my career have I ever encountered such unprofessional behaviour from a colleague, and I'm not going to put up with it.
Disagreements are to be expected from time to time, and I've had my fair share of those.

Debate is integral to science, and I welcome it.

But attempting to silence others' opinions is unacceptable.

It is unbecoming of a scientist, and utterly incompatible with free inquiry.
Now, the point of this thread is not to seek sympathy or to arrange a pile-on. I don't want to see anyone behaving inappropriately toward Dr Cevik as a result.

But I do want people to know what happened.

Primarily, I hope calling out such behaviour will prevent a repeat of it.
Finally, since I'm in the mood to point out unprofessional behaviour, I'd like to make some comments of a general nature (not directed to Dr Cevik).
I'm quite happy to engage in debate over the interpretation of data, but I'm disappointed with the tactics some people use.

If you pay attention, you'll see people who don't (and can't) identify errors of fact, but rather resort to ad hominem attacks.

Keep an eye out for that.

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More from @DrZoeHyde

22 Feb
Historically, I’ve not been a big user of social media. It never really appealed to me.

But in early 2020, I was pretty sure we were facing a pandemic and so started this account to share my thoughts with friends and family.

It got a bit bigger than I expected.
But as this account has grown, it’s taken up more of my time than it did in the beginning.

I don’t plan to stop tweeting any time soon, but I’m going to have to spend a bit less time on here. For one thing, it’s grant-writing season now, and that’s going to occupy me for a bit.
I’ve also begun to see how social media can be quite an addictive medium and I don’t want to get sucked into that. So I’m going to pull back a little in terms of the amount of time I spend on here.
Read 4 tweets
15 Feb
Here’s some good news. In this study of 514 people who received their first Pfizer vaccine dose, those who’d previously been infected showed a superior immune response compared to uninfected people, even if initial antibodies were no longer detectable.
Research has already shown that the vaccine acts like a super-booster in people who’ve been infected with SARS-CoV-2, suggesting that one dose may be enough for them.

However, it wasn’t clear if this would still apply if the antibodies from infection were no longer detectable.
This study shows that everyone got a boost, even if they no longer tested positive for antibodies.

A limitation is that the study only had 17 people with a previous infection (6 with detectable antibodies, 11 without), but the results are still reassuring.
Read 5 tweets
8 Feb
Thread summarising an important presentation on the AstraZeneca trial results for South Africa.

Key points:

➡️ Efficacy initially seemed to be ~75%, but dropped to 22% against SA 🇿🇦 variant.
➡️ Past COVID-19 (original) doesn't protect against reinfection by the SA 🇿🇦 variant.
This was a relatively small trial with only 1,749 mostly young, healthy participants.

People were given two doses of the vaccine about 28 days apart.
The relatively small number of people in the trial makes it suitable for exploring the efficacy of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine against mild-to-moderate disease only.

The trial lacks statistical power to tell us the efficacy of the vaccine against severe disease.
Read 19 tweets
7 Feb
Australia must now reconsider its plan to use the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, and instead use a high-efficacy vaccine like Novavax.

We've an agreement for 51 million doses of Novavax and can manufacture it domestically.
#auspol #COVID19Aus
According to preliminary results seen by the Financial Times, the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine does not appear to prevent mild and moderate COVID-19 caused by the South African variant.
While the company believes the vaccine may still prevent severe disease, there are now question marks as to whether it will be sufficient to prevent the debilitating condition known as long COVID, which is common even in mild disease.
Read 5 tweets
6 Feb
Study describing the incidence of PIMS/MIS-C in South Korea. From May to November 2020, 2,287 COVID-19 cases were detected in children. During this time, 3 serious MIS-C cases occurred, equating to an incidence of approximately 1 in 800 children.
South Korea has largely suppressed COVID-19, and has excellent testing and contact tracing.

While it’s likely they missed some SARS-CoV-2 infections in children (which would overestimate the incidence), they probably missed some mild MIS-C cases (which would underestimate it).
Therefore, 1 in 800 is probably the upper bound for the true incidence of MIS-C.

Assuming a worst-case scenario, where there were actually 5 times as many SARS-CoV-2 infections in children than detected, the lower bound would be 1 in 4,000.
Read 6 tweets
5 Feb
Important pre-print study (but from a good team, including @florian_krammer), showing a single dose of a mRNA vaccine may provide superior protection to two doses, in people who’ve already had COVID-19. This could free up the vaccine supply, enabling more people to be vaccinated.
The researchers found that when people who’d previously been infected were given a single dose of a mRNA vaccine, their resulting antibody titres were 10-fold higher than people who hadn’t been infected, but received two doses of a mRNA vaccine.
The researchers also found the side effects of the vaccine were more pronounced in people who’d previously been infected (though none were serious).

Thus, if these people only need to be given a single dose of the vaccine, this could potentially save them unnecessary discomfort.
Read 4 tweets

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