As the virus evolved, our perception of protection conferred by vaccines changed dramatically. From the popular notions of herd immunity and vaccinating our way out of the pandemic, the discussion is now centred around booster doses and the eventuality of living with the virus. As the virus evolved, our perception of protection conferred by vaccines … Continue reading How the idea of vaccine protection changed in one year
What is the major objective of a booster dose -- to protect from infection or protect from severe disease and death, who should get it first whenever it is approved, is there enough evidence recommending for their use, and should we give boosters when primary immunisation is not complete? Dr. Chandrakant Lahariya, physician epidemiologist and … Continue reading Does the Omicron variant make a case for booster doses?
On October 6, Sweden and Denmark, followed by Finland a day later, suspended the use of Moderna’s mRNA vaccine for younger age groups after reports pointed to an increase in the number of myocarditis and pericarditis cases. Why three Nordic countries have suspended Moderna vaccine. On October 6, Sweden and Denmark suspended the use of … Continue reading Why three Nordic countries have suspended Moderna vaccine
Moderna, which was funded $1 billion for research by the U.S. government, said in October 2020 that it will not enforce COVID-19-related patents against those making vaccines intended to combat the pandemic. But the company has refused to transfer technology to the South African hub to manufacture its mRNA vaccines for distribution to the African … Continue reading mRNA vaccine manufacturers loathe to share know-how
While Dr. Vinod Paul, Chair of the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19, said no country is vaccinating children, the U.S. has been vaccinating children older than 16 years since April 20. On May 10, the FDA authorised Pfizer vaccine in children 12-15 years, and five other countries too have approved the vaccine … Continue reading Government passes off factually incorrect vaccination information as ‘fact’
It is very much possible to slow down the pace of virus spread by vaccinating all above 18 years. However, with vaccine shortage in many States, the number of daily vaccinations in the last week has been dipping. Since April 1 the number daily fresh cases has been accelerating rapidly with the number of cases … Continue reading Can vaccination of all adults slow down the second wave?
In a conversation I moderated, Dr. Gautam Menon, Professor of Physics and Biology at Ashoka University and Dr. Giridhara Babu, epidemiologist at the Public Health Foundation of India, Bengaluru and a member of the Karnataka COVID-19 Technical Advisory Committee discuss some possible options available to contain the second wave. Edited excerpts: After daily new COVID-19 … Continue reading How can India contain the second wave?
On April 13, India permitted fast-track approval of COVID-19 vaccines developed, tested and approved outside the country. The decision has been taken to “expand the basket of vaccines for domestic use and hasten the pace and coverage” of COVID-19 vaccination. But before mass roll out of the vaccines that are developed and tested abroad can … Continue reading In a major shift, India fast-tracks restricted use approval for vaccines developed in other countries
Influenza vaccines are decided based on strains recommended by WHO twice a year for northern and southern hemisphere vaccines. They require animal studies in ferrets and small safety and immunogenicity studies, based on measurement of antibodies. If we had a reasonable antibody measurement which could reflect protection, then we could potentially follow a similar strategy … Continue reading Proving variant-specific efficacy will be a logistic nightmare, very expensive: Gagandeep Kang
The neutralisation by 14 of the 17 most potent antibodies was reduced or abolished by either K417N, or E484K, or N501Y mutations in sera of people vaccinated with Moderna or Pfizer vaccine. In a small cohort involving just 20 trial participants, researchers have found that both Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech are able to neutralise SARS-CoV-2 variants … Continue reading Moderna, Pfizer vaccines neutralise variants encoding mutations E484K or N501Y but with less potency