Health

Russia publishes virus vaccine results, weeks after approval

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian scientists have belatedly published first results from early trials into the experimental Sputnik V vaccine, which received government approval last month but drew considerable criticism from experts, as the shots had only been tested on several dozen people before being more widely administered.

In a report published in the journal Lancet on Friday, developers of the vaccine said it appeared to be safe and to prompt an antibody response in all 40 people tested in the second phase of the study within three weeks. However, the authors noted that participants were only followed for 42 days, the study sample was small and there was no placebo or control vaccine used.

One part of the safety trial included only men and the study mostly involved people in their 20s and 30s, so it is unclear how the vaccine might work in older populations most at risk of

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Asthma may not boost risk for severe COVID-19, study says

New research may have people with asthma breathing a little easier: Doctors found the airway disease doesn’t raise the risk of being hospitalized due to COVID-19.

The researchers also noted that people with asthma weren’t more likely than people without it to need a ventilator to help them breathe.

“A lot of people with asthma think they have a predisposition to severe COVID, and they worry a lot about going out. They should take precautions like using their masks, but they may not need to worry so much,” said study author Dr. Fernando Holguin. He’s director of the Asthma Clinical and Research Program at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, in Aurora.

Holguin said the proportion of hospitalized COVID-19 patients with asthma was around 6%.

“For most places, that’s an asthma prevalence that is at or lower than the asthma prevalence in the general population. To compare, with influenza

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Trump’s rush for a covid vaccine could make it less likely to work

The Food and Drug Administration is considering whether to allow a vaccine against the coronavirus to be used on an emergency basis before its formal approval process is finished, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has told states to be ready to distribute doses by Nov. 1 — two days before the election. 

But wanting a vaccine to be ready by the time the polls open and getting one that is safe, effective and accepted by the American people are two very different things. And the Trump administration’s attempts to make government agency leaders support the president’s political positions this year have undermined public trust in the very institutions needed to evaluate and distribute the immunizations. Now the same impulses that have led Trump to downplay the virus and latch onto imagined miracle cures could also get in the way of an effective vaccine. 

Trump is right that 

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Coronavirus pandemic has Americans eating healthier, buying foods to boost immunity

The coronavirus pandemic has motivated Americans to prioritize healthy eating habits, new research suggests.

Foods that boost immunity, metabolism and improve mental health are becoming more sought after during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 77% of consumers saying they want to do more to increase their health habits for the future, according to new research from Chicago-based food processing company Archer Daniels Midland.

COVID-19 has prompted more Americans to prioritize healthy eating habits. (iStock). 

COVID-19 has prompted more Americans to prioritize healthy eating habits. (iStock). 

The research, as reported by FoodDive, indicates that plant-based diets — as alternatives to meat-centric meals — continue to be a growing trend. Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) found that 18% of consumers in the U.S. purchased their first plant-based protein products during the pandemic, with 92% saying they’ll continue to buy them.

IMPOSSIBLE FOODS SCALES RETAIL WITH CORONAVIRUS-FUELED MEAT SUPPLY CHAIN ISSUES 

The news comes on the heels of separate research from Stanford Medicine scientists published in

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First Case of COVID-19 Reinfection Confirmed

A 33-year-old man in Hong Kong may represent the first confirmed case of reinfection, researchers in Hong Kong said.

The man was diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26, hospitalized, then recovered. He tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 again on August 15, and whole genome sequencing of viral isolates from the two episodes indicated they were from different clades, reported Kwok-Yung Yuen, MD, of the University of Hong Kong, and colleagues in a manuscript they said had been accepted for publication in Clinical Infectious Diseases, but not yet published.

That is almost unassailable evidence that the man was infected a second time, and another indication, albeit far from definitive, that immunity to SARS-CoV-2 may not last very long.

Interestingly, the patient was asymptomatic during his second infection, the authors said.

Reinfection was suspected in a few previous cases of COVID-19, but never documented. Many experts believed what appeared to be reinfection

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First Case Of Coronavirus Reinfection Reported By Researchers In Hong Kong

The first confirmed case of reinfection of the coronavirus has been identified by a group of University of Hong Kong researchers.

In an article that was accepted for publication in the journal of Clinical Infectious Diseases, the researchers revealed a second infection of COVID-19 in a 33-year-old man, who was first diagnosed with the virus four and half months earlier, The New York Times reported.

In his first bout with COVID-19, the apparently healthy man had only mild symptoms the first time around and no symptoms when reinfected with the virus, the article said. The reinfection of COVID-19 was discovered during an airport screening when the man returned from a trip to Spain.

This is “the world’s first documentation of a patient who recovered from Covid-19, but got another episode of COVID-19 afterwards,” the researchers told Bloomberg in an emailed statement.

The article from the researchers may suggest that immunity

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Teachers win injunction to prevent in-person learning

A teachers’ union in Florida has won an injunction stopping the enforcement of an executive order requiring schools in the state to be open for in-person learning.

In July, Commissioner Richard Corcoran with the Florida Department of Education issued an emergency order that schools must be open at least five days per week for all students. The order was “subject to advice and orders” given by the Department of Health.

The order was for all brick-and-mortar schools to open by Monday, Aug. 31, according to court documents.

The Florida Education Association, which is the state’s largest teachers’ union, filed a lawsuit against Corcoran and Gov. Ron DeSantis in an effort to halt that order.

Tallahassee Circuit Court Judge Charles Dodson granted the union’s injunction request on Monday, ruling that the order from state officials was unconstitutional.

Dodson in his ruling adjusted the emergency order, removing the requirement that the schools

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COVID-19 puts health research to the test in Africa

Bockarie says that the peculiar odds presented by the COVID-19 pandemic may be in favor of Africa’s developing vibrant research infrastructures across the continent.

For instance, “a bane of Africa has been the un-equitable North/South collaborations, so-called helicopter scientific adventures, which make a sweep of a site/center/institution in Africa, collect the samples, and dash out to their bases, with little attribution to local researchers, communities, local policymakers, etc.,” Kariuki tells Nature Medicine.

But with no clear path yet for the resumption of international travel, ‘helicopter science’ is made trickier, which clears the path for local researchers to fill the gap. Kariuki says that the African Academy of Science is working with partners, including the UK Collaborative on Development Research, “to attain collaborations that are truly equitable across the globe.”

Bockarie also notes that research capacity will not be strengthened substantially without meaningful prioritization by policymakers. Stakeholders who are deciding

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Google searches for anxiety soar to record at start of coronavirus pandemic: Study

If you turned to Google for help diagnosing an anxiety attack as the coronavirus pandemic swept through the U.S. earlier this year, a new study suggests you weren’t alone. 

Researchers from the Qualcomm Institute at the University of California San Diego analyzed Google Trends dating back 16 years and found that people searched for severe anxiety-related information at record highs beginning in March when the coronavirus pandemic was first declared a national emergency.

Researchers looked for searches on “anxiety” or “panic” in combination with “attack,” such as “panic attack,” “signs of anxiety attack,” “anxiety attack symptoms,” and so forth, according to the study published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine. 

Anxiety-related searches were roughly 11% higher than usual over the 58 days after President Donald Trump declared a national emergency on March 13, according to the researchers who worked in collaboration with Johns Hopkins University, Barnard College and the Institute for

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Emergency plasma authorization sparks concern for those leading charge on treatment

In the high-pressure push to combat COVID-19, two things have become abundantly clear: we need effective treatment and we need further data to inform our findings.



a man and a woman taking a selfie in a room: FILE Phlebotomist Jenee Wilson talks with Melissa Cruz, an ER technician for Valley Medical Center who has recovered from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) she contracted from a patient in Seattle, Washington, U.S. April 17, 2020.


© Lindsey Wasson/Reuters
FILE Phlebotomist Jenee Wilson talks with Melissa Cruz, an ER technician for Valley Medical Center who has recovered from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) she contracted from a patient in Seattle, Washington, U.S. April 17, 2020.

Sunday evening, the FDA issued what was a long-expected emergency authorization for one of the treatments most eyed with high hopes — convalescent blood plasma. President Trump, has even recently been touting the treatment as a “powerful therapy” with an “incredible rate of success.”

While some doctors welcomed the authorization, others tasked with spearheading the ongoing clinical study of convalescent plasma’s efficacy tell ABC News that this latest green light may make their work more difficult.

“This authorization doesn’t make a lot of sense to me

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