"Connecting Communities for COVID19 News" 12th Jun 2020

Isolation Tips
How to Soothe Your 'Re-Entry Anxiety' As COVID-19 Lockdowns Lift
Kerber, who says he’s never struggled with anxiety before, now feels “underlying concern or unease” when he spends time in public, in large part because he has an autoimmune condition that makes him more susceptible to coronavirus. At the same time, he says, he’s anxious about the prospect of working and living remotely for months more, or longer. “I’m concerned about going into public, but now I’m also concerned about how long I can [last] without going out,” he says. When COVID-19 lockdowns were first instituted, it felt, for many people, unfathomable to stay home nearly 24/7. But for people like Kerber, it now feels equally strange—and nerve-wracking—to do anything else after months cocooned inside. Psychologists have dubbed the phenomenon “re-entry anxiety.”
In post-lockdown China, student mental health in focus amid reported jump in suicides - The Jakarta Post
The heightened post-lockdown anxiety has become a matter of central government concern as domestic media report a spate of suicides by young people. It has also led to unprecedented measures by schools and local governments to focus on student mental health - a topic that like suicide has often been taboo in Chinese society. "There have been some heartbreaking incidents as schools reopened," Yan Wu, vice mayor of the southern city of Zhuhai, said at China's annual parliamentary meeting last month. "This highlights the importance and urgency of promoting mental health development in young students," he said. At the parliamentary meeting, at least four delegates put forward proposals for more attention to be paid to students' psychological needs.
How the coronavirus pandemic changed kissing culture
To show affection for those you love is a basic human desire that is perhaps needed now more than ever. However, because of COVID-19, it’s one we can no longer express without a bit of caution. The coronavirus pandemic has turned sweet kisses — the ones that give you flutters during date night or the precious ones from a mother or father to a child — into risky business.
Hygiene Helpers
Most WA schools will return face-to-face this fall but with COVID precautions in place
Students across Washington state are likely to return to school this fall, but it will require masks and social distancing, according to guidance from the state released Thursday. In the 55-page document, state Superintendent Chris Reykdal said his expectation is that “schools will open this fall for in-person instruction.” All students, staff, volunteers and guests must wear cloth face coverings when returning.“We’re coming back — where it’s safe to do so with all protocols in place,” Reykdal said during a Thursday press conference.
Coronavirus: England test and trace system identifies 31,000 contacts
More than 31,000 close contacts of people with coronavirus were identified during the first week of the test and trace system in England, figures show. Of those, 85% were reached and asked to self-isolate for 14 days. This was from 8,000 people testing positive for the virus. Two thirds of them gave details of close contacts. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it was the public's "civic duty" to follow instructions given by contact tracers. Speaking at the daily coronavirus briefing, he added he was not ruling out enforcement measures to make people self-isolate for 14 days if asked to do so. About 25,000 contact tracers were recruited in England and started work at the end of May.
Malaysia bars its citizens from Hajj over coronavirus fears
Malaysia follows Indonesia in not allowing its citizens to visit Mecca and Medina for the annual pilgrimage.
COVID-19 in Toronto: Toronto plans to make face coverings mandatory on its public transit system
Toronto plans to make face coverings mandatory on its public transit system, a rule that could go into effect starting July 2. Mayor John Tory announced the updated regulations for the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) on Thursday. "This will help to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our city," Tory said. "As the restart and reopening begins, we know that more people will be back on the TTC… at the same time, physical distancing will become a greater and greater challenge." The TTC board will need to approve the recommendation at its meeting next week, though TTC CEO Rick Leary has already said he supports the plan. "I want to make sure people know our system is safe for both customers and employees," Leary said.
Heroes of the pandemic: A made-in-B.C. contact-texting platform is tackling COVID in Rwanda and Uganda. Why not here?
A made-in-B.C. contact-texting platform is tackling COVID in Rwanda and Uganda. Why not here? The Canadian company can't get a single Canadian jurisdiction to take them up on their offer to help amid the pandemic
British health minister urges protesters not to attend rallies
British health minister Matt Hancock said on Thursday people should not attend large demonstrations for public health reasons after protests in support of the Black Lives Matter movement attracted tens of thousands over the last week. “I understand that people want to show their passion for a cause that they care deeply about but this is a virus that thrives on social contact, regardless of what your cause may be,” he said at a daily news conference.
Resurgence of virus threatens South Korea's success story
Just weeks ago, South Korea was celebrating its hard-won gains against the coronavirus, easing social distancing, reopening schools and promoting a tech-driven anti-virus campaign President Moon Jae-in has called “K-quarantine.” But a resurgence of infections in the Seoul region where half of South Korea’s 51 million people live is threatening the country’s success story and prompting health authorities to warn that action must be taken now to stop a second wave. South Korea’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday reported 45 new cases, a daily rise that has been fairly consistent since late May. Most have been in the Seoul metropolitan area, where health authorities have struggled to trace transmissions.
Indonesia: Protecting orangutans from the coronavirus
Can humans spread COVID-19 to orangutans? Authorities in Indonesia are not willing to take any risk, as they shut down two orangutan rehabilitation centers to limit the apes' interaction with the public.
Community Activities
Feeling caged up by the coronavirus? You can soon escape to the zoo.
Seizing on Tuesday’s executive order allowing various outdoor recreational activities to resume amid the coronavirus pandemic, zoos in New Jersey are once again letting humans in. At the state’s southern tip, the Cape May County Zoo will reopen on Saturday at 10 a.m., the county said in an announcement.
'China's lifeblood': street hawkers make surprise return to fire up ailing economy
Once discouraged in favour of modern, smarter cities, vendors have been praised by Beijing in a bid to keep low-skilled in work after coronavirus
Coronavirus: Bahrain school holds drive-through graduation on F1 circuit
As coronavirus bans wreak havoc on events, one Bahrain school has honored its seniors with a “drive-through” graduation ceremony complete with fireworks at the Kingdom’s Formula One circuit. In rows of well-spaced vehicles, students and their families lined up Wednesday evening in front of the main podium of Bahrain International Circuit, where Grand Prix races are held.
Musicians perform a virtual gala in COVID-19 lockdown
Leader of the Metropolitan Opera and Philadelphia Orchestra used his time in isolation to achieve an artistic triumph that touched thousands
Quarantined surfers return to Peru's famous waves
Peruvian surfers are returning to their nation’s world-famous waves after three months spent in lockdown due to the coronavirus. Wearing masks and carrying their boards, the surfers this week descended onto Lima’s rocky beaches for the first time since the pandemic shutdown. “It was about time, no?” said a smiling Alessandro Currarino, sporting a black wetsuit and matching face mask after hitting the waves. “Peru has some of the best waves in the world and we need to take advantage of them.” The South American nation has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, confirming nearly 210,000 cases – the second-highest number in the region, after Brazil. Authorities in early June announced they’d begin allowing non-contact sports to resume.
Cambridge launches £1million bursary to help adults hardest hit by coronavirus
The University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education (ICE) is offering adults hit hardest by the Covid-19 pandemic the chance to rebuild their futures with a new £1 million bursary programme.
Working Remotely
Coronavirus: Half of Brits are happy to work from home for as long as necessary
Over half of Brits are happy to continue working from home for as long as necessary, according to research. In a survey of 2,000 people who are currently working from home, conducted by communications provider Moneypenny, 52% said they are content to work remotely for as long as the coronavirus pandemic requires. However, some 37% admit that they are starting to feel the pressure and 6% said they are already finding this new way of life a struggle. With the government urging all non-key workers to work from home where possible, the study shows that while many have become accustomed to this new way of working, some employees have had to implement new changes in order to cope with the transition.
AI and Digital Workspaces to Empower Remote Workers in a Post-Covid Era
There’s enough evidence out there to suggest that work from home is here to stay. Collaboration tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams witnessed an explosion of downloads and several people are likely to remain hooked. A Gartner survey revealed that 74% of CFOs intend to shift at least 5% of their employees permanently to remote work. Even worker preferences appear to be changing. In a Gallup poll, 59% of US workers who moved to remote work on account of the pandemic indicated they would like to continue working from home even after the Covid-19 crisis ends. In an increasingly no-touch world, it is very likely that this ‘genie’ is not going back into its bottle any time soon. Yet home workspaces also come with their own set of challenges.
Here to stay: Remote work, virtual events and online training are likely to be the norm in the post-COVID world
Workplaces will likely never be the same after the COVID-19 crisis ends. While some people have thrived with the independence and flexibility of commute-free remote work, others have struggled to cope — with the impact on mental health being felt by many who are concerned for their wellbeing, families and communites. As we move beyond the pandemic, it’s likely that many organisations will need to continue some level of remote work and collaboration, which will provide them with savings on office space and business travel expenses. In this new world, four key elements will define the workplaces of tomorrow.
How to manage employee loneliness | HRD America
We’re halfway through 2020 and some countries are coming out of lockdowns and cautiously returning to the office. But companies may choose the safer option of extended remote working arrangements. How can you support employees who are struggling while in isolation?
Virtual Classrooms
Barco's Virtual classroom to expand reach of University College London's professional development programme
The institute has always had an international focus but with the recent spread of COVID-19, the need to connect with experts in Europe, the Americas and Asia, who are at the forefront of COVID-19 expertise, has only increased. Professor John Kelly, consultant urological surgeon, specialising in robotic surgery for bladder and prostate cancer at UCL, comments: “There are many platforms to connect, but we have found that we can use Barco’s system in a way that has not been possible with other technologies. The way teachers and students can interact is unparalleled, and therefore, this system comes at just the right time.” UCL uses the weConnect platform for synchronous teaching, where remote students can interact with a trainer and/or lecturer. Teachers can see the students’ faces up close and they can interact with them through polls, questions and whiteboarding.
Teacher transforms garage into gym for virtual classes with special needs students
The coronavirus pandemic changed how schools operate with students now learning via virtual classrooms. For one California physical education teacher, it meant getting creative by transforming his garage into a gym. Jared Sellers, an adaptive PE teacher for the Auburn Unified School District in California, renovated his garage into a home gym for virtual classes. He says it cost him around $1,500 of his own money, buying equipment, flooring and adding a new drain so the garage wouldn’t flood if it rained. “I looked at my garage, and it was a bit of a mess. I knew that I could transform it into a space where I could still teach students. It was a process, and it took a village to put it together,” Sellers said.
This Data Scientist Is Offering Virtual Coding Camps For Students Nationwide To Narrow STEM’s Education Gap
Her recent launch of CoderHeroes, and its CoderCamp program, has two parts: students nationwide can sign up for computer science learning in lieu of cancelled in-person camps—a boon at a time when coronavirus is threatening summer activities. A portion of each virtual CoderCamp tuition is then donated back to her Code Your Dreams after-school program, which provides middle and high school students in low-income Chicago communities with free computer science courses as well as access to the laptops, WiFi and android devices they need for coding and app creation.
Public Policies
How to find coronavirus testing centers in India using Google services
Google today announced that users in India can search for coronavirus testing centers through Search, Assistant, and Maps. The company has worked with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and MyGov to list these centers. Here’s how you can find a test center: Go to Google Search or Maps and type in “Coronavirus testing” or “COVID-19 testing.” Click on the Testing tab. You can see test labs near you listed with details such as if the lab is government-operated or private and if you need a referral from authorities to get tested. You can call India‘s coronavirus helpline at 1075 to know the requirements to get tested at these labs.
England’s Contact Tracers Fail to Reach a Third of New Cases
Britain’s coronavirus contact tracers failed to track down a third of the cases referred to them in England in the first week of an operation aimed at stemming the pandemic. Among 8,117 people who tested positive for the virus, 5,407 were reached and asked to provide details about their contacts with others, the Department of Health and Social Care said in a statement on its website on Thursday. Contact tracers then reached some 85% of people identified as having been exposed to the infection and advised them to self-isolate. “For the first week of a scale citizen service, this is good performance,” Dido Harding, the chair of NHS Improvement who is overseeing the Test and Trace Service, told reporters Thursday. “Clearly it can and needs to and will get better.”
Coronavirus: BAME safety plan not published
A report containing measures to protect ethnic minority groups from coronavirus has been drawn up for government, BBC News has learned. Public Health England (PHE) published a review last week confirming coronavirus kills people from ethnic minorities at disproportionately high rates. But a senior academic told BBC News a second report, containing safeguarding proposals to tackle this, also existed. And PHE now says this report will be published next week. Labour described the decision not to immediately publish the second report as "scandalous and a tragedy".
No 'patient zero' as Covid-19 came into UK at least 1,300 times
There was no “patient zero” in the UK’s Covid-19 epidemic, according to research showing that the infection was introduced on at least 1,300 occasions. The findings, from the Covid-19 Genomics UK consortium, have prompted further criticism that opportunities to suppress the spread of infection in February and March were missed. The study by the consortium – which was set up to sequence the virus’s genetic code – shows that introduction of the virus into the UK peaked in mid-March at a time when infection rates were surging in European countries, but before the government clamped down on non-essential travel. Had travel restrictions and quarantine requirements been introduced a week earlier, overall case numbers in the UK may have been far lower, critics say. The analysis, which has yet to be peer reviewed, also suggests that very few cases were introduced from China, where the pandemic started, with the vast majority coming from Spain, France and Italy.
Brexit: UK backtracks on full EU border checks amid coronavirus crisis
The government is expected to apply much less rigorous EU border checks on imports than it initially had planned, after the Brexit transition period finishes at the end of this year. The Financial Times reports ministers have abandoned plans to introduce full checks after pressure from businesses. A government source told the BBC it would take a "pragmatic and flexible approach" due to coronavirus. The UK had committed to introduce import controls on EU goods in January. But the source said ministers recognised the impact the virus was having on businesses, and so pragmatism and flexibility on imports made sense - "to help business adjust to the changes" that were now imminent.
Rwanda: COVID-19 - Mass Testing for Rwandan Peacekeepers in South Sudan
Rwanda has started mass testing and sampling for the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) targeting its peacekeepers serving under the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). The testing spearheaded by the Ministry of Health started on Tuesday in Malakal where Rwanda Formed Police Unit-One (FPU-1) hybrid contingent of 239 officers, is deployed. Rwanda FPU-1 lost one of its members-Police Constable (PC) Enid Mbabazi-who succumbed to Covid-19 on June 2, at the King Faisal Hospital after she was evacuated back home for further treatment. Rwanda National Police (RNP) spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera said that the testing which started in Malakal was inline with the prevention measures against the spread of coronavirus/Covid-19 and the exercise will continue to all Rwandan peacekeepers serving in South Sudan.
Mexico City to increase COVID-19 testing in break from feds
Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum said Wednesday the capital will embark on a large-scale COVID-19 testing effort as the centerpiece of its plan to reopen its economy, diverging from the federal government’s strategy, which has shunned widespread testing as a waste of resources. The goal will be performing some 100,000 tests per month by July and with those results trying to detect and isolate new infections as quickly as possible, Sheinbaum said in a news conference. It will be paired with an intensive information campaign. The sprawling city of 9 million — with an equal number or more in the suburbs — has confirmed more than 32,000 infections and more than 3,200 deaths, both considered to be undercounts because of limited testing.
Nashville mayor delays next stage of reopening after coronavirus cases rise
Nashville Mayor John Cooper said he intends to curb the city’s next reopening phase after reporting a “slightly elevated” average in Covid-19 cases over the last two weeks. Phase three reopening would allow for restaurants and retail stores to operate at full capacity and bars, clubs, karaoke bars, tours, live entertainment and “transportainment” businesses to operate at 50% capacity. Nashville’s local health department reported 6,627 total confirmed Covid-19 cases on Thursday, an increase of 56 cases since Wednesday.
Houston Weighs New Lockdown, Sees ‘Precipice of Disaster’
Houston-area officials are “getting close” to reimposing stay-at-home orders and are prepared to reopen a Covid-19 hospital established but never used at a football stadium as virus cases expand in the fourth-largest U.S. city. The announcement by Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner on Thursday came a day after the Lone Star state recorded its highest one-day tally of new cases since the pandemic emerged.
WHO warns pandemic accelerating in Africa
The speed the new coronavirus jumped from 100,000 to 200,000 confirmed cases in Africa shows just how quickly the pandemic is accelerating on the continent, the World Health Organization said Thursday. According to an AFP tally, Africa topped the 200,000 mark on Tuesday. "It took 98 days to reach the first 100,000 cases, and only 18 days to move to 200,000 cases," Doctor Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO's regional director for Africa, told a video briefing hosted by the UN press association in Geneva.
PM’s aide downplays dire WHO warning
Referring to the WHO letter, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr Zafar Mirza said Pakistan had been making appropriate policy choices from the beginning keeping in view its national context. “We started early and took preventive measures with regard to entry of virus from outside through stringent screening at our airports. Our first case was confirmed on Feb 26 while the epidemic was in full swing among our two immediate neighbours many weeks before i.e. China and Iran. While we had 26 cases our prime minister called a meeting of National Security Committee and announced major lockdowns many of which are still enforced e.g. ban on mass gatherings, closure of educational institutions, marriage halls, sports events, etc,” he said in a statement issued here on Wednesday.
Kazakhstan locks down several towns after spike in COVID-19 cases
Kazakhstan has locked down several towns and villages and tightened restrictions in one of its provinces following a spike in fresh COVID-19 cases, authorities said on Thursday, a month after ending a nationwide state of emergency. In the central Karaganda region, retailers and public transit will work shorter hours and private cars will be banned from moving at night from June 13, the government said in a statement. Several towns and villages will be locked down again and 70% of public sector employees in the province will work from home, it said, adding that many local residents and businesses were disregarding social distancing rules.
IMF approves additional $111.06 mln to Rwanda to address COVID-19 pandemic
The International Monetary Fund said on Thursday it had approved an additional $111.06 million disbursement to Rwanda to address the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the country’s economy. “Rwanda’s economic outlook has worsened since the approval of the first (Rapid Credit Facility) request on April 2, 2020, leading to a further downward revision in the 2020 GDP growth forecast from 5.1 to 2.0 percent due to deepening of the COVID-19 impact,” the IMF said in a statement. The funding brings total IMF COVID-19 support to Rwanda to $220.46 million, it said, and will help finance the country’s urgent balance of payments and budget needs. The central African country implemented one of Africa’s strictest lockdowns to try to stem the spread of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus, including shuttering some businesses, closing borders and schools. Authorities have since begun to gradually open up the economy, although some restrictions remain.
EU Plans Advance Purchase of Up to Six Promising COVID-19 Vaccines: Sources
The European Commission is seeking a mandate from EU countries to buy promising COVID-19 vaccine candidates in advance from pharmaceutical firms, as long as they are not produced solely in the United States, officials said. The EU executive wants to pay for up to six potential vaccines in deals where the makers would commit to providing doses when and if they become available. It will ask EU health ministers at a video conference meeting on Friday to back the plan, which has been swiftly devised as the bloc fears it may not have access to enough shots should a vaccine be developed. All vaccines in clinical trial this year are in principle eligible for advance purchases, but not those which are produced exclusively in the United States, because Washington has signalled it will not allow sales abroad before its own needs are met, the EU officials told a news conference.
Pandemic 'Accelerating' in Africa, Test Kits Needed, WHO Says
The coronavirus pandemic is accelerating in Africa, spreading to rural areas after international travellers brought it to capital cities, the World Health Organization said on Thursday. But the WHO said there was no indication that large numbers of severe cases and deaths were being missed, nor has the virus caused significant infections in refugee camps across the continent. Ten countries are driving Africa's epidemic, accounting for 75% of the some 207,600 cases on the continent, said Matshidiso Moeti, WHO's Africa regional director. About 5,000 deaths have been reported. South Africa, which last month began a phased easing of the lockdown, is the hardest-hit, accounting for a quarter of all cases, she said.
Kremlin defends Russia's coronavirus death data after WHO questions its exceptionally precise Covid-19 data
The Kremlin denied on Thursday there was anything untoward with Russia's official coronavirus death data after the World Health Organisation said this week that Russia's low death rate was "difficult to understand". Russia has reported more than half a million cases of the new coronavirus, the third largest caseload in the world, and 6,532 deaths, a number that is many times lower than other countries with serious outbreaks. Asked if the Kremlin thought the data was strange, spokesman Dmitry Peskov said "no", but that Russia's consumer health regulator would be ready to explain the data to the World Health Organisation.
Norway allows airlines to fly full planes again- minister
Norway will no longer require airlines to leave middle seats on planes empty, a measure previously introduced to reduce the risk of contamination with the novel coronavirus, the country’s transport minister said on Thursday. The Nordic country, which advised its citizens in March not to travel abroad, is to open its borders for tourists coming from Denmark, and plans to update travel advice for other countries by June 15.
Maintaining Services
COVID-19 & its Impact on Textile & Garment Supply Chains in Developing Nations
The COVID-19 outbreak led to production stops in China first, followed by closures of shops elsewhere around the world. For the moment, European and American retailers, the two destination markets for this sector, are still cancelling their orders. Cancelled orders are a cause for concern in many sourcing countries. As shippers are increasingly invoking ‘force majeure’ clauses within their contracts to halt their payments, on 8 April, the Sustainable Textile of Asian Region (STAR) Network, the body, which brings together representatives of the producing associations from Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Myanmar, Pakistan and Vietnam, released a joint statement on the issue. It urged brands and retailers to consider the impact that their purchasing decisions during the coronavirus pandemic could have on workers and small businesses in the supply chain and, therefore, to honour their contracts with their suppliers. In their statement, the STAR Network invited global businesses to “support business partners in the supply chain as much as possible, and aim at a long-term strategy of business continuity, supply chain unity and social sustainability.”
British Airways to put artworks on sale in COVID-19 cash crunch
British Airways will sell at least 10 works of art from its extensive collection, a source said, to try to raise millions of pounds to boost its cash reserves as it struggles through the coronavirus pandemic. The airline has come under fire from British politicians for plans to cut 12,000 jobs. But with planes grounded and no revenue, it says the job losses are necessary because travel demand is set to shrink in coming years. The BA collection includes works by Damien Hirst, Peter Doig and Bridget Riley, and selling off some of the works, which usually hang in executive lounges at airports, was an idea from a BA staff member, a source familiar with the situation said on Thursday. At least one work has been valued at more than 1 million pounds ($1.27 million), the source added.
Egypt to reopen tourist destinations less hard-hit by virus
Egypt will reopen select tourist destinations to international charter flights starting July 1, its cabinet said Thursday, allowing travelers from around the world to return to parts of the country less hard-hit by the coronavirus. The government hopes to draw tourists to popular yet remote attractions that have been spared the ravages of the virus. Those include the southern part of the Sinai Peninsula, home to the major resort and beach destination of Sharm el Sheikh, the Red Sea resort areas of Hurghada and Marsa Alam, as well as Marsa Matrouh, on the Mediterranean coast.
Germany in close contact with Turkey over travel warning - minister
Germany is in close contact with countries outside Europe, including Turkey, over whether travel warnings in place due to the coronavirus pandemic can be lifted, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Thursday. Lifting the warnings would depend on factors like the number of infections and capacity levels at local health systems, Maas said after talks with ministers from several popular holiday destinations for Germans.
Healthcare Innovations
Searching for coronavirus clues in single cells
Why it matters: Pinpointing the cells in the body's immune response would help speed the development of treatments and vaccines. It also offers insights into inflammation, which underlies diseases ranging from cancer to arthritis to heart disease. How it works: Different molecules (cytokines and antibodies, for example) and cells (white blood cells, T cells, macrophages and others) in different pathways control the inflammation response that kicks in when the body is injured or infected. But inflammation can also persist due to disease and turn the body's immune system against itself, as in the case of autoimmune conditions like lupus and diabetes, causing damage. "Inflammation is a double-edged sword," says Yuan Tian, a computational immunologist at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.
Moderna Set to Test COVID-19 Vaccine in 30000 People Starting in July
Moderna announced it had finalized the Phase III clinical trial structure for its COVID-19 vaccine, mRNA-1273. The company’s messenger RNA vaccine has been generally the furthest ahead in clinical development. It dosed the first patient in its Phase I trial with the National Institute of Allergy & Infectious Diseases (NIAID) on March 16, with a second dose—the vaccine requires two doses—on April 23. mRNA-1273 is an mRNA vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 that encodes for a prefusion stabilized form of the Spike (S) protein. The mRNA vaccine is a new type of technology, where the vaccine contains a section of messenger RNA that codes for a protein associated with the virus. The vaccine is injected into a person and the mRNA moves into the test subject’s cells, where the cells then churn out the protein. The body’s immune system should then treat the protein like the virus and attack it, developing an immune response that it will then use if it comes into contact with the actual virus.
Moderna Plans To Start Phase 3 Testing of its COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate in July
On June 11, biotech company Moderna announced it had finalized plans for phase 3 testing of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The late-stage trial will include 30,000 participants and is expected to begin in July.
Regeneron to begin trials for COVID-19 antibody cocktail
Regeneron will conduct placebo-controlled trials of REGN-COV2 at multiple sites in four different populations: hospitalized COVID-19 patients, non-hospitalized patients with COVID-19 symptoms, uninfected people in high-risk groups such as healthcare workers, and uninfected people in close contact with infected patients. The first two trials will focus on virologic, safety, and clinical end points in hospitalized and non-hospitalized patients.