Pfizer, BioNTech Say Covid-19 Vaccine Is Safe for Children Aged 5 to 11

Link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/pfizer-biontech-say-covid-19-vaccine-is-safe-for-young-children-generates-immune-response-11632134701

Excerpt:

Pfizer Inc. and partner BioNTech SE said their Covid-19 vaccine was found to be safe in children ages 5 to 11 years in a late-stage study and generated a strong immune response in them, bringing the prospect of broader vaccination coverage closer.

Pfizer said it would share the results with regulators in the U.S. and other countries and seek emergency-use authorization in the U.S. as early as the end of the month.

The companies said the two-dose shot was found to be safe and well tolerated among the children in the study. The vaccine generated levels of antibodies that were similar to those of younger adults, meeting the study’s measurements of success, according to the companies.

Pfizer and BioNTech said they hadn’t yet determined vaccine efficacy — how well it protects against Covid-19 — for children in the age group. Not enough young subjects in the study have become sick to compare rates between children who got a vaccine and those who got a placebo, but researchers could still learn more as the trial continues.

Author(s): Jared S. Hopkins

Publication Date: 21 Sept 2021

Publication Site: Wall Street Journal

Comparing the COVID-19 Vaccines: How Are They Different?

Link: https://www.yalemedicine.org/news/covid-19-vaccine-comparison

Excerpt:

In the United States, the number of cases and deaths that had been rising to a peak for almost a year have been flattening out, thanks, in large part, to COVID-19 vaccinations that began in December. As the weeks pass, more reports have been coming out about the effectiveness of the vaccines that are in use and the potential of those still in development. So, how do they differ? 

It’s important to keep up, but it’s also a daunting task, given the flood of information (and misinformation) coming at us from so many directions.

Vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson are being administered in the U.S. right now, and others are on track to do the same. 

We mapped out a comparison of the most prominent COVID-19 vaccines.

Author(s): Kathy Katella

Publication Date: 1 July 2021 (originally published February 2021, updated)

Publication Site: Yale Medicine

CDC says vaccine link to heart inflammation is stronger than previously thought

Link: https://thehill.com/changing-america/well-being/prevention-cures/558321-cdc-says-vaccine-link-to-heart-inflammation-is

Excerpt:

Males under 30 may face heart problems after getting vaccinated.

Myocarditis and pericarditis share the same symptoms.

Treatment for myocarditis can be solved with over-the-counter medication or resolve itself.

Author(s): Christian Spencer

Publication Date: 14 June 2021

Publication Site: The Hill

Covid vaccine: How many people in the UK have been vaccinated so far?

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-55274833

Graphic:

Excerpt:

The UK has four vaccines approved for use: Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford-AstraZeneca, Moderna and Janssen; three of which require two doses for maximum protection.

The campaign to reach as many people as quickly as possible was boosted by a shift in policy in early January – to prioritise the first dose of a vaccine, with a second dose up to 12 weeks later, a bigger gap than originally planned.

Progress made in the UK so far means the country continues to be among those with the highest vaccination rates globally.

Author(s): The Visual and Data Journalism Team

Publication Date: 15 June 2021

Publication Site: BBC

The Delta variant doubles the risk of hospitalization—but the vaccines still work

Link: https://www.technologyreview.com/2021/06/15/1026365/the-delta-variant-doubles-the-risk-of-hospitalization-but-the-vaccines-still-work/

Excerpt:

The good news? Vaccines still sharply reduce the risk of being admitted to hospital with the Delta variant. The Scottish study found that the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine provided 79% protection, two weeks on from the second dose, while the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine offered 60% protection. That lower rate may be due to the fact that it takes longer for immunity to develop with the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, researchers said. 

However, research released shortly after by Public Health England was even more promising. It found that the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine provides 96% protection from hospitalization after two doses, while the Oxford/AstraZeneca is 92% effective at preventing hospitalization after both shots. The conclusion? It’s yet more evidence of the importance of making sure as many people as possible get vaccinated, and that they get both shots.

Author(s): Charlotte Jee

Publication Date: 15 June 2021

Publication Site: MIT Tech Review

Covid, false positives and conditional probabilities…

Link: https://www.theguardian.com/theobserver/commentisfree/2021/apr/25/covid-false-positives-and-conditional-probabilities

Excerpt:

In courtrooms, mixing up the probability of “A given B’” with “B given A” is known as the “prosecutor’s fallacy”. In 1999, a court convicted Sally Clark of the murder of her two sons, in part because a medical expert claimed the chance of two accidental cot deaths was one in 73m. Even if this number was right – which it isn’t – it did not reflect the chance she was innocent. A double murder was also very rare: the relative likelihood of the two explanations was key and with new evidence and better statistical reasoning, an appeal court quashed the conviction.

There was controversy after a recent Observer headline referred to Bayes’s theorem as “obscure”. His ideas may be little known by the public, but they are growing among scientists. Many complex analyses done during the pandemic have been “Bayesian”, including modelling lockdown effects, the ONS infection survey, and Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine trial. The term “credible interval”, rather than “confidence interval”, is the giveaway.

Last week, Cass Business School announced the renaming of its institution after Bayes and his theorem. The obscure tomb in nearby Bunhill Fields is worth a visit.

Author(s): David Spiegelhalter, Anthony Masters

Publication Date: 25 April 2021

Publication Site: The Guardian

Vaccine Efficacy and the Immunity Time Spans

Link: https://polimath.substack.com/p/vaccine-efficacy-and-the-immunity

Graphic:

Excerpt:

Let’s refer back to the Pfizer study submitted to the FDA. In that study, 18,555 people were vaccinated and 18,533 people received the placebo injection. In these groups, 7 days after the second dose was administered, we saw that the vaccinated group got infected at only 5% the rate that the placebo group was infected.

Furthermore, this is the number of cases we see over the course of a two month study. So those 9 people out of 18,555 were not symptomatic and infectious that whole time, but only for a few weeks.

So, to take CNN’s example and re-imagine it for the reality we have with this data.

Let’s say 1 million people are travelling. If everyone is unvaccinated (and the window of infection is roughly one week), there will be about 1,100 infected travelers.

If, however, everyone is vaccinated, there will be about 60 infected travelers and their chance of infecting you (my dear vaccinated friend) is reduced substantially.

Author(s): PoliMath

Publication Date: 13 April 2021

Publication Site: Marginally Compelling on substack

Cerebral venous thrombosis: a retrospective cohort study of 513,284 confirmed COVID-19 cases and a comparison with 489,871 people receiving a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine

Link: https://osf.io/a9jdq/

Graphic:

Abstract:

Using an electronic health records network we estimated the absolute incidence of cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) in the two weeks following COVID-19 diagnosis(N=513,284), or influenza (N=172,742), or receipt of the BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccines(N=489,871). The incidence of portal vein thrombosis (PVT) was also assessed in these groups, as well as the baselineCVTincidence over a two-week period. The incidence of CVT after COVID-19 diagnosis was 39.0 per million people (95% CI, 25.2–60.2). This was higher than the CVT incidence after influenza (0.0 per million people, 95% CI 0.0–22.2, adjusted RR=6.73, P=.003) or after receiving BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273 vaccine (4.1 per million people, 95% CI 1.1–14.9, adjusted RR=6.36, P<.001). The relative risks were similar if a broader definition of CVT was used. For PVT, the incidence was 436.4 per million people (382.9-497.4) after COVID-19, 98.4 (61.4-157.6) after influenza, and 44.9 (29.7-68.0) after BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273. The incidence of CVT following COVID-19 was higher than the incidence observed across the entire health records network (0.41 per million people over any 2-week period). Laboratory test results, available in a subset of the COVID-19 patients, provide preliminary evidence suggestive of raised D-dimer, lowered fibrinogen, and an increased rate of thrombocytopenia in the CVT and PVT groups. Mortality was 20% and 18.8% respectively. These data show that the incidence of CVT is significantly increased after COVID-19, and greater than that observed with BNT162b2 and mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccines. The risk of CVT following COVID-19 is also higher than the latest estimate from the European Medicines Agency for the incidence associated withChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (5.0 per million people, 95% CI 4.3–5.8). Although requiring replication and corroboration, the present data highlight the risk of serious thrombotic events in COVID-19, and can help contextualize the risks and benefits of vaccination in this regard.

Author(s): Maxime Taquet, Masud Husain, John R Geddes, Sierra Luciano, Paul J Harrison

Date Accessed: 19 April 2021

Publication Site: OSFHOME

Blood clots as prevalent with Pfizer and Moderna vaccine as with AstraZeneca’s: study

Link: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/blood-clots-as-prevalent-with-pfizer-and-moderna-vaccine-as-with-astrazenecas-report-2021-04-15

Excerpt:

study by Oxford University found the number of people who receive blood clots after getting vaccinated with a coronavirus vaccine are about the same for those who get Pfizer PFE, 2.43% and Moderna MRNA, 6.67% vaccines as they are for the AstraZeneca AZN, -0.16% vaccine that was produced with the university’s help. According to the study, 4 in 1 million people experience cerebral venous thrombosis after getting the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, versus 5 in 1 million people for the AstraZeneca vaccine. The risk of getting CVT is much higher for those who get COVID-19 — 39 in a million patients — than it is for those who get vaccinated. AstraZeneca’s vaccine use has been halted or limited in many countries on blood clot concerns.

Author(s): Steve Goldstein

Publication Date: 15 April 2021

Publication Site: Marketwatch

Detroit Mayor Is Wrong To Turn Down J&J COVID-19 Vaccines

Excerpt:

The Detroit Free Press reports that the mayor declined to accept a shipment of 6,200 doses of the Johnson & Johnson one-shot vaccine. Why? At a press conference on Tuesday, the mayor asserted, “Johnson & Johnson is a very good vaccine. Moderna and Pfizer are the best. And I am going to do everything I can to make sure the residents of the city of Detroit get the best.”

What does the mayor mean by “best”? Duggan stated, “The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are 95% effective if you get two shots. Johnson & Johnson is one shot, which is nicer, but it’s about 67% effective.”

Actually, in the United States arm of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) clinical trial, the vaccine’s ability to prevent moderate to severe infection was 72 percent and it is 85 percent effective at preventing severe disease.In addition, the J&J vaccine has been shown to be effective against the new, more contagious COVID-19 variants that are now spreading across the country. And it is likely that many citizens would prefer the convenience of getting a one-and-done J&J shot as opposed to waiting nearly a month to get a second Moderna or Pfizer/BioNTech shot.

Author(s): Ronald Bailey

Publication Date: 5 March 2021

Publication Site: Reason

UK finds vaccines 80% effective at preventing hospitalisations in over-80s

Link: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-health-coronavirus-britain-vaccines/uk-finds-vaccines-80-effective-at-preventing-hospitalisations-in-over-80s-idUSKCN2AT38I

Excerpt:

The Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines are more than 80% effective at preventing hospitalisations from COVID-19 in those over 80 after one dose of either shot, Public Health England (PHE) said on Monday, citing a pre-print study.

Author(s): Alistair Smout

Publication Date: 2 March 2021

Publication Site: Reuters