📍VARIANT TAILORED VACCINE—Moderna announced that a variant-tailored 3rd dose of the NIH-Moderna vaccine greatly boosted antibody levels in volunteers in a new study. The updated vaccine, tailored against the #B1351 variant from 🇿🇦, worked best.🧵 #COVID19 businessinsider.com/modernas-boost…
2) Earlier research, done in petri dishes, suggested the B.1.351 variant was able to partially reduce the effectiveness of leading vaccines, including from Pfizer and Moderna. businessinsider.com/coronavirus-va…
3) How much did the #B1351 variant decrease neutralization from Pfizer and Moderna vaccines? A lot. 20-30x fold drop for Moderna. And 30-40x fold drop for Pfizer - akin to a completely unrelated distant bat coronavirus. While not equal to efficacy, this is a big drop. See 🧵
4) “Participants in the Phase 2 study were tested for pseudovirus neutralization titers prior to boosting approximately 6 to 8 months after their primary vaccination series. Although titers versus the wild-type SARS-CoV-2 virus remained high…
5) “titers against the variants of concern (B.1.351 and P.1) were much lower, with approximately half of participants having titers below the assay limit of quantification prior to boosting.”

⚠️WOW—old vaccine much weaker on #P1 too!
6) But booster did work—“Two weeks after receiving either mRNA-1273 or mRNA-1273.351, PsVN titers were boosted in all participants and all variants tested.”..
7) “Following boost, geometric mean titers against wild-type, B.1.351, and P.1 variants increased to levels similar to or higher than the previously reported peak titers against the ancestral (D614G) strain following primary vaccination.”

➡️the #B1351 booster works for #P1 too!
8) “mRNA-1273.351 appeared to be more effective at increasing neutralization titers against the B.1.351 variant when compared to mRNA-1273, as evidenced by higher mean GMT levels already at 15 days following booster dose (GMT = 1400 for mRNA-1273.351; GMT = 864 for mRNA-1273).”
9) “The relative decrease in neutralizing titers between wild-type and B.1.351 assays also improved with mRNA-1273.351 booster, from a 7.7-fold prior to boost to a 2.6-fold 15 days after boost, suggesting a potentially more balanced immune response against the tested variants.”
10) But a warning… don’t rely on just one dose. Please get both doses, especially for variants. 2 doses much much safer…. See this thread 🧵 please… ⬇️
11) ignore the variants at our own peril…

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More from @DrEricDing

7 May

Pandemic theatre: Desk plexiglass shields (even increases risk—possibly disrupting ventilation).

No effect: Same teacher, reduced class size.

Good: Masking (teachers & kids), daily symptom screening, no extracurriculars, cohort.🧵
science.sciencemag.org/content/early/… Image
2) “School-based mitigation measures are associated with significant reductions in risk, particularly daily symptoms screens, teacher masking, and closure of extra-curricular activities.”
3) “A positive association between in-person schooling and COVID-19 outcomes persists at low levels of mitigation, but when seven or more mitigation measures are reported, a significant relationship is no longer observed.”
Read 15 tweets
7 May
⚠️HUGE EXCESS DEATHS—global #COVID19 death toll is 2x higher than official data—6.9 mil worldwide. Deaths:

US 🇺🇸—905k
India 🇮🇳—654k
Mexico 🇲🇽—617k
Brazil 🇧🇷—595k
Russia 🇷🇺—593k

Likely hit 1918 Spanish flu death count by end of pandemic, says @IHME_UW. 🧵
statnews.com/2021/05/06/new… Image
2) That is about 38% higher than the current death estimate from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 561,594.

➡️The new figure also surpasses the estimated number of U.S. deaths in 1918 flu pandemic, which was estimated to have killed approximately 675,000 Americans.
3) “We’re probably not yet at the global toll of Spanish flu and certainly not at the death rate from Spanish flu. But given what’s unfolding in India right now, Covid is going to rival Spanish flu at global level in terms of the count before we see the end of this epidemic”
Read 14 tweets
7 May
UPDATE—variants & #COVID19 vaccines—Pfizer vaccine had great efficacy of 89.5% vs #B117 🇬🇧variant & 75% vs #B1351 🇿🇦variant infection with 2 doses.🧵

(Ignore 1 dose efficacy—it didn’t exclude first 14 days post shot—author @Laith_AbuRaddad now clarifies)
nejm.org/doi/full/10.10… Image
2) To be clear, in the @NEJM article, the authors failed to define 1st dose and didn’t exclude the first 14 days of post vaccination followup. It was not disclosed until someone @supermarioelia asked in a direct written communication. Thus the paper’s 1st dose number too low. Image
3) For protection against severe disease, efficacy was 100% for 2 doses for the variants, 97% overall for all #COVID19 cases. That’s great.
Read 6 tweets
6 May
I cry for India: “Those who are lucky will survive—whoever has to die will die”.

Hidden camera of 🇮🇳 hospital: horrible ICU conditions, shortages, long lines of sick. @BBC follows a family that lost a 35-year old mother of 2.

HT @yogital @NicolaCareem
2) Rundown hospital “conditions the government doesn’t want people to see. So we filmed secretly. Covid patients being treated amid other illnesses, cared for by their own family.” With toilets overrun in ICU. Image
3) “the people here are angry. The PM @narendramodi makes announcements on TV, but nothing reaches us”. Image
Read 12 tweets
6 May
⚠️Don’t ignore—

"Ignoring variants today, suggesting they aren't important, leads us to ignore variants tomorrow.

Ignoring the variants of tomorrow is potentially a f***ing big mistake!"

…says Dr. @michaelmina_lab,
Harvard immunologist & epidemiologist
#COVID19 #vaccinate #P1 ImageImage
2) “variants are extremely concerning. Most data at this point shows anywhere from a 10-fold to a 30-fold reduction in nAb against the variants”
3) “When we mix these variants with elderly immune systems that will wane - we will see new cases emerge amongst fully vaccinated vulnerable in our communities this year. it will be bad in this fall and it will lead to outbreaks and deaths again.” 🔥
Read 5 tweets
6 May
Insulin was invented ~100 years ago, and its patent sold for $1.

“Do you know the reason why [insulin is] $1,000 with insurance?” ~@AOC

There is no reason for insulin to cost $21 in Canada for a 10 ml bottle, while it costs a mortgage payment in the US.
2) atrocious amount of big pharma price gouging on insulin. Absolutely atrocious. Heartbreaking atrocious. Shamefully atrocious.
3) Let this sink in:

In 2018:
J&J CEO made $30M
Pfizer CEO made $28M
Merck CEO made $18M
Eli Lilly CEO made $16M
Gilead CEO made $16M


📌Americans spent $535B on Rx drugs

📌1/4 of diabetics rationed insulin to survive

📌500K Americans went bankrupt from medical bills.
Read 10 tweets

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