Coronavirus COVID-19 (2019-nCoV) Thread - 2021 Breaking News

Yes and no. It’s worth reading that article - another unintended consequence is that, because flu incidence is being severely depressed (in the southern hemisphere winter, say), the sample size for predicting which strains will work in next season’s northern hemisphere vaccines is reduced (and vice-versa) making strain selection all somewhat of a crapshoot all round.

j

Strain selection has always been a crap shoot. Some years are better than others. I still figure being flu vaccinated is loading the dice in my favor.

Oh, I agree with that.

j

112,654,146 total cases
2,496,749 dead
88,239,672 recovered

In the US:

28,897,718 total cases
514,996 dead
19,212,517 recovered

Yesterday’s numbers for comparison:

I understand the good intentions behind your argument, but there’s an important point you haven’t considered: it’s not that some protection is better than none; it’s that there’s little evidence the first dose provides much protection beyond the first few weeks:
See this Scientific American article:

In the trials, the Pfizer vaccine provided partial immunity about two weeks after the first dose, with an efficacy of 82 percent. But there are no data on whether protection lasts longer than three weeks, when the second dose was given.

And this from the British Medical Journal:

Pfizer and BioNTech themselves have already urged caution on the grounds that their data ends at day 21, and “there is no data to demonstrate that protection after the first dose is sustained after 21 days”. It’s possible that the protection people seem to have will suddenly drop off after that point – in fact, this wouldn’t be surprising based on the way the immune system usually works.

[all bolding mine]

So we’re not talking about twice as many people having a pretty good level of immunity; we’re talking about the strong possibility that people having had only one dose will have very little immunity 4 weeks later, while that one dose is still being distributed.

Greeeeeeat. Another horror movie come to life.

I’ve considered it, but I’ve concluded it’s more important to get shots into as many people’s arms as possible.

I understand the concerns that the single dose might be less effective in terms of providing 95% percent inoculation against the virus in those who receive the vaccine.

The flip side is that there is growing evidence that the vaccine is preventing severe COVID-19 cases, and if that holds, and if we have strong evidence (even if it’s not airtight evidence at this point) that a single dose is preventing people from hospitalization…I want that damn dose. I want others to have it as well.

We would then still have to keep in place the same social distancing and mask wearing to prevent the actual spread of the virus. But the vaccine has to be thought of not as a magic pill, which is what I think a lot of people want to view it as, but it instead needs to be regarded as another highly important layer of protection.

I doubt this is the last version of the vaccine that we will see. The virus will mutate in response to vaccines, and the vaccines themselves will have to be adapted in the future anyway, like the flu vaccine.

I’m sorry (really), but as we keep trying to tell you, the immune system doesn’t work like that. Here’s a quick-and-dirty explanation that will show you why you are, most regrettably, wrong:

You get one dose of a vaccine. Your body’s B cells rush in. B cells make antibodies, but they die in only a few weeks. Think of them as elite warriors who strike fast but die before they can secure the borders: at first, your body will have lots of antibodies, but as those antibodies die off, you lose that protection.

You get the second dose of the vaccine. That triggers the arrival of certain T cells that DO confer long-term immunity. Think of them as the troops that don’t respond to the first alarm, but when they do arrive, they’re there for good–or at least for long periods.

As the second link says, “Most vaccines require booster doses to work.” Note: not to give us better immunity, but to work.

I get your frustration and applaud your determination. Unfortunately, neither changes the way our immune systems work.

Hope this helps.

Getting shots into as many arms as possible does no good after a month. Do two shots into person A, then move onto two shots into person B, then 2 into person C…

Listen, the protection GOES AWAY, AFAWK, after a month or so. It isn’t merely ‘less effective’, it stops being effective meaningfully.

It’s science, not math.

Do you have a cite for B cells dying so quickly? Lots of vaccines don’t even use booster shots or have them years apart. Old people have been found to have B cells from the Spanish flu.

And don’t get this confudence in the vaccine being useless in a month. Where are you people getting this?

We have to go by what we know now about the Covid vaccines, not by assuming that Covid vaccines will work exactly the same as other vaccines. Right know what the scientists say they know (by their definition of know which is we can prove so far about the Covid vaccines is that two shots (for the two used in the US) are needed for durable protection.

It does no good after a month? Where’s the evidence that supports this claim? IIUC, it’s accurate that we don’t know if one shot provides more than a few months of protection – that’s true as far as I know.

But that’s not the same as knowing that it provides no protection after a month.

There’s really no need to be condescending – I understand how the immune system works, thanks.

That is an assumption – we don’t know exactly how durable the antibodies are. Moreover, immunity varies considerably from one person to the next; we’re talking about averages. We’re also talking about knows, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns.

The most accurate way to describe the current investigation into immunity, durability of the vaccine, and herd immunity (if there is such a thing in this case) is that we’re still learning a lot as we go along.

To be absolutely clear: I am not proposing that we abandon plans for a second dose; I’m saying get more people vaccinated with the first dose now, which doesn’t mean every single person who wants a vaccine has to be accounted for before the second dose is administered. But we can probably delay the second dose in order to make sure that more people who need the first dose can get it and avoid the bottle neck that’s being caused right now in a pursuit of perfection – in a pursuit where we really don’t know what “perfect” looks like and where it’s very unlikely anyway.

Here’s another article, which basically suggests that the 2nd dose can probably be delayed. Not because they want more people to have the first dose, but because waiting might actually make the vaccine package as a whole more effective – as I’m saying, we’re learning a lot as we go.

Not going to play word games. It isnt known that sufficient protection lasts longer than weeks. To assume it does and act according good would be a poor bet to make with people’s health and lives. You certainly can make that choice to yourself, please don’t make it for me nor agitate for that choice to be made for me.

… said that while early results from Israel’s vaccine program are positive, there are still too many unknowns about a single dose’s efficacy beyond three to six weeks.”

“Until such time that there are good clinical trials that show that a single dose provides an equivalent level of protection, I don’t know that we should abandon our approach or create new policies,” he said.

It’s also not clear how one dose will perform against different coronavirus strains that are becoming more widespread, including separate strains that were first reported in the U.K., South Africa and Brazil.

“We’re running into uncharted territory,” said Deepta Bhattacharya, an associate professor of immunobiology at the University of Arizona, who was not involved with the study. “The uncertain issue is how long that protection is going to last against the current variants, as well as some of the ones that might get selected for if you wait too long.”

Bhattacharya said delaying the second dose up to six weeks, in line with the CDC’s guidance, seems reasonable. But beyond that, it may be too soon to tell, which means health officials may be faced with tricky decisions. Temte said that while early results from Israel’s vaccine program are positive, there are still too many unknowns about a single dose’s efficacy beyond three to six weeks.

“Until such time that there are good clinical trials that show that a single dose provides an equivalent level of protection, I don’t know that we should abandon our approach or create new policies,” he said.

It’s also not clear how one dose will perform against different coronavirus strains that are becoming more widespread, including separate strains that were first reported in the U.K., South Africa and Brazil.

“We’re running into uncharted territory,” said Deepta Bhattacharya, an associate professor of immunobiology at the University of Arizona, who was not involved with the study. “The uncertain issue is how long that protection is going to last against the current variants, as well as some of the ones that might get selected for if you wait too long.”

Bhattacharya said delaying the second dose up to six weeks, in line with the CDC’s guidance, seems reasonable. But beyond that, it may be too soon to tell, which means health officials may be faced with tricky decisions. Temte said that while early results from Israel’s vaccine program are positive, there are still too many unknowns about a single dose’s efficacy beyond three to six weeks.

“Until such time that there are good clinical trials that show that a single dose provides an equivalent level of protection, I don’t know that we should abandon our approach or create new policies,” he said.

It’s also not clear how one dose will perform against different coronavirus strains that are becoming more widespread, including separate strains that were first reported in the U.K., South Africa and Brazil.

“We’re running into uncharted territory,” said Deepta Bhattacharya, an associate professor of immunobiology at the University of Arizona, who was not involved with the study. “The uncertain issue is how long that protection is going to last against the current variants, as well as some of the ones that might get selected for if you wait too long.”

Bhattacharya said delaying the second dose up to six weeks, in line with the CDC’s guidance, seems reasonable. But beyond that, it may be too soon to tell, which means health officials may be faced with tricky decisions.

In some more time we may know enough to delay round two more than the 6 weeks allowed and I hope you end up being right on that, but we are not there yet.

From a NBC News site. I have read multiple stronger citations of the case but not going spend more time proving it to other’s satisfaction.

But of course. :slight_smile: It was in the second link I provided in post #645. Here it is again. If you’d prefer not to read the article, here’s the relevant bit:

When the immune system first encounters a vaccine, it activates two important types of white blood cell. First up are the plasma B cells, which primarily focus on making antibodies. Unfortunately, this cell type is short-lived, so although your body might be swimming in antibodies within just a few weeks, without the second shot this is often followed by a rapid decline.

Then there are the T cells, each of which is specifically tailored to identify a particular pathogen and kill it. Some of these, memory T cells, are able to linger in the body for decades until they stumble upon their target – meaning immunity from vaccines or infections can sometimes last a lifetime. But crucially, you usually won’t have many of this cell type until the second meeting.

There’s more to it, but you’d need to read the (clear, interesting) article for that.

So some expected but important breaking news:
The Food and Drug Administration released an analysis of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday morning that supports its authorization for emergency use.

Whilst I’m very definitely on your side, this is somewhat over-egging it, at least so far as the Astrazeneca vaccine goes. Quoting from the product information approved by the EMA:

Evidence shows protection starts from approximately 3 weeks after first dose of vaccine and persists up to 12 weeks. A second dose should be given at a 4 to 12 week interval after the first dose

(Top of page 8)

And for the record the EMA assessment report does not go easy on the AZ application.

Regarding Pfizer and Moderna, so far as I know the case is that there is no evidence of continued efficacy beyond three or four weeks after a single shot. And we do not licence medicines on the basis of no evidence.

j

j, I think we are saying the same thing, just from different directions, so thank you for humoring me. I may have ‘over-egged’ that ‘one month’, but I did qualify it as “meaningful protection”.

I was not being condescending. I tried to be concise and to keep it simple, as your response gave no indication you’d read the linked articles or understood the mechanics of how the immune system worked. I thought if you had, it would be clear to you why delaying the second dose for the as long as it would take to get the first dose to everyone isn’t a good idea.

Since you’ve decided to interpret my attempts to sympathize and to explain the science as condescension, I’ve decided it’s best not to engage with you further.