A notice to our readers
Dear Brief19 readers,
Those of you who are on the mailing list probably already know that our editor-in-chief, Dr Jeremy Faust, recently founded a newsletter, Inside Medicine. As such, we’ve decided to wind down Brief19. However, this website will stay up indefinitely as a resource. It’s been an honor and a privilege to become your trusted source of COVID-19 research and policy news. We are immensely grateful to all of our wonderful contributors for their thankless work in the midst of the chaos of the last two years. Stay safe and healthy.
The Brief19 Team
Moderna Vaccine Shows Reduced Activity Against South Africa B.1.351, Brazil (P.1), and California (B.1.427/B.1.429) Coronavirus Variants. However, it Remains Highly Active Against U.K. B.1.1.7 Variant
As vaccination rates go up and hospitalizations go down, there is finally reason for optimism in ending the covid-19 pandemic. But variants of SARS-CoV-2 could substantially impede our progress. Scientists are rushing to study whether antibodies generated by the currently authorized vaccines offer...Read article
Oxford/AstraZeneca Fails to Prevent Mild to Moderate Covid-19 From B.1.351 (“South Africa”) Variant
The rise of variants of SARS-CoV with alterations at the key spike protein, notably the “South Africa” variant (B.1.351), has posed potential challenges to the covid-19 vaccines. Many have expressed worry regarding the possibility of reduced efficacy of the currently available coronavirus vaccines,...Read article
Major NIH-Funded Trial of Convalescent Plasma in Covid-19 Outpatients Stopped Early Due to Futility
In another blow to convalescent plasma, the much-hyped proposed treatment for covid-19, the "Convalescent Plasma in Outpatient with COVID-19," or "C3PO" trial has stopped recruiting new patients and has been halted early, Brief19 has learned.
Facebook’s Approach to Covid-19 and Vaccine Misinformation
Editor’s note: Here at Brief19, we are committed to fighting medical disinformation, one briefing at a time. But what are the heavy-hitters of the internet and social media space doing to stop harmful stories from going viral? To learn more, we invited two Misinformation Policy Managers at Facebook...Read article
An in-depth analysis of Biden’s proposed stimulus package
The covid-19 pandemic has caused human suffering and economic consequences. The notion that one should be prioritized over the other is fundamentally flawed logic. There cannot be economic security (or a recovery) as long as covid-19 is spreading through the country as it is today.
Called "The...Read article
Johnson & Johnson publishes early data for its covid-19 vaccine candidate. The vaccine is a few months behind the mRNA options but may eventually offer advantages
The past month has been a busy one on the coronavirus vaccine front. With the US FDA granting emergency authorization of the Pfizer and Moderna covid-19 shots, rollouts have begun among healthcare workers and other high-risk persons. We've been able to examine data from both of these mRNA vaccines...Read article
Moderna vaccine phase III trial results released in New England Journal of Medicine
The phase III randomized double-blinded multi-center trial of the Moderna vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 has now been published.The trial enrolled 30,420 volunteers, randomly assigned to receive either two doses of the vaccine 28 days apart or a...Read article
Phase III SARS-CoV-2 vaccine trial results appear in a medical journal for the first time
Vaccines are hoped to be the cornerstone in helping to control the covid-19 pandemic. Vaccination outside of clinical trial settings began in the United Kingdom yesterday and will likely begin in the United States next week, assuming that the US Food and Drug Administration grants emergency use...Read article
New trial of convalescent plasma for covid-19 falls flat, another setback for hyped treatment
Is convalescent plasma the miracle treatment we were promised? The answer in the latest published clinical trial appears to be no. This is more worrisome news for a proposed treatment that has been bandied about and for which the US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization,...Read article