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Positive news in early stage vaccine development

Old 05-18-20, 08:32 AM
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genec
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Positive news in early stage vaccine development

This is early human trials testing. The big question is whether the antibodies form a suitable resistance to later infection.

In a milestone moment in the race for a coronavirus vaccine, the first results in humans showed Moderna's vaccine candidate led to antibody responses in a handful of healthy volunteers.

The Massachusetts biotech described Monday the immune system responses to the vaccine from this first, small study that was primarily focused on safety. The results don't yet show whether the vaccine would prevent people from being infected with the novel coronavirus.

Finding an effective coronavirus vaccine has become a global priority in ending the pandemic. US government leaders have put forward the ambitious timeline to have one by the end of 2020. It typically takes several years to develop a vaccine.

The trial was conducted by the US National Institutes of Health. Moderna is planning to soon start a mid-stage study and then begin a late-stage trial in July. The company is aiming to be ready for potential emergency use of its vaccine this fall, a timeline with no precedent in the history of vaccine development.
Business Insider: Moderna coronavirus vaccine releases first human trial results - Business Insider.
https://www.businessinsider.com/mode...results-2020-5
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Old 05-18-20, 08:39 AM
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https://www.thedailybeast.com/trumps...-covid-19-work

"The former pharmaceutical executive tapped by President Trump to lead the federal effort to develop a coronavirus vaccine owns stock options worth more than $10 million in a company receiving funding from that same program, Stat News reports. Until his appointment, Dr. Moncef Slaoui was on the board of the company, Moderna, one of the leading companies in the race for a vaccine and the first to enter a vaccine into clinical trials."
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Old 05-18-20, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
This is early human trials testing. The big question is whether the antibodies form a suitable resistance to later infection.

Business Insider: Moderna coronavirus vaccine releases first human trial results - Business Insider.
https://www.businessinsider.com/mode...results-2020-5
"After receiving both doses, the 15 volunteers at the weakest dose strength also had antibodies in their blood at similar levels as people who recovered from COVID-19."

Well .. that is encouraging.
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Old 05-18-20, 09:08 AM
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I'm getting a little skeptical of these early press releases which I suspect are aimed primarily at investors. We saw similarly encouraging press releases from Oxford's Jenner institute. Subsequent information with more data was far less compelling. I just hope we don't rush to pick the first vaccine that sort of works rather than giving enough time to pick the best out of the many efforts currently underway.

I think the problem is it's an expensive undertaking getting a vaccine approved. A company like Moderna (burning through ~.5B cash/yr) has deep enough pockets to back their vaccine but there very well could be better candidates out there owned by companies not as well financed. We could end up getting a vaccine from the company with the best finance dept rather than the best technology.
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Old 05-18-20, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
"After receiving both doses, the 15 volunteers at the weakest dose strength also had antibodies in their blood at similar levels as people who recovered from COVID-19."

Well .. that is encouraging.
And so far, no zombies... Of course, as always... wait 31 days.
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Old 05-18-20, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
I'm getting a little skeptical of these early press releases which I suspect are aimed primarily at investors. We saw similarly encouraging press releases from Oxford's Jenner institute. Subsequent information with more data was far less compelling. I just hope we don't rush to pick the first vaccine that sort of works rather than giving enough time to pick the best out of the many efforts currently underway.

I think the problem is it's an expensive undertaking getting a vaccine approved. A company like Moderna (burning through ~.5B cash/yr) has deep enough pockets to back their vaccine but there very well could be better candidates out there owned by companies not as well financed. We could end up getting a vaccine from the company with the best finance dept rather than the best technology.
I also wish that Trump's new vaccine czar wouldn't personally make a fortune from this announcement.

https://www.nydailynews.com/coronavi...feu-story.html

https://www.businessinsider.com/monc...onflict-2020-5
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Old 05-18-20, 09:20 AM
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I think the company is legit. The problem resides with the lack of any ethical standards in this government.

mRNA vaccines are a very promising technology.

Last edited by wgscott; 05-18-20 at 09:28 AM.
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Old 05-18-20, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
I also wish that Trump's new vaccine czar wouldn't personally make a fortune from this announcement.

https://www.nydailynews.com/coronavi...feu-story.html

https://www.businessinsider.com/monc...onflict-2020-5
What could possibly go wrong?
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Old 05-18-20, 04:57 PM
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conflict-of-interest aside, who can volunteer themselves to test the vaccine? I bet tons of young, healthy, single adults who live alone and can easily quarantine themselves for a month would step forward. Maybe even a cash stipend could be offered, although that makes the ethics a little more dubious: are you trying to reward the poor for helping society? or trick the poor into risking their lives for less money than that risk should be compensated?

Here's a starting point for some reading about vaccine volunteering: https://www.scottaaronson.com/blog/?p=4780
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Old 05-18-20, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
conflict-of-interest aside, who can volunteer themselves to test the vaccine? I bet tons of young, healthy, single adults who live alone and can easily quarantine themselves for a month would step forward. Maybe even a cash stipend could be offered, although that makes the ethics a little more dubious: are you trying to reward the poor for helping society? or trick the poor into risking their lives for less money than that risk should be compensated?

Here's a starting point for some reading about vaccine volunteering: https://www.scottaaronson.com/blog/?p=4780
They may not have a hard time finding volunteers. Of course ... saying you'll volunteer is one thing ... actually doing it is another kettle of fish.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01179-x
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Old 05-19-20, 10:22 AM
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Well like many others, I am not worried for myself in terms of being a volunteer, but about others in my life I might affect.

That's an interesting Nature article. (However: sentence 1: "Momentum is building to speed the development of coronavirus vaccines by intentionally infecting healthy, young volunteers with the virus" vs photo showing an old woman receiving a shot: WTH?)

I'll actually make a point to talk to my family at dinner tonight, what do they think about the possibility of volunteering together? We already know we're good at self-quarantining, 2 of my 3 boys basically haven't been outside for months. They haven't run out of youtube videos yet

I think to really push this along, the federal government should offer, instead of or in addition to a cash payment to volunteers, a package of short-term medical+life insurance for covid-19 and a clearly-specified set of co-morbidities.
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Old 05-19-20, 06:05 PM
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We're all gonna end up like this,...

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Old 05-19-20, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Business Insider: Moderna coronavirus vaccine releases first human trial results - Business Insider.
https://www.businessinsider.com/mode...results-2020-5
Interesting COVID discussion in this NOVA PBS special. The woman depicted in that Business Insider story is also shown getting the vaccine at 40:26

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Old 05-20-20, 01:20 PM
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Ugh.

"Vaccine experts say Moderna didn’t produce data critical to assessing Covid-19 vaccine"

https://www.statnews.com/2020/05/19/...id-19-vaccine/
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Old 05-26-20, 12:57 PM
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More bad news for Moderna.

He experienced a severe reaction to Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate. He’s still a believer


4 out of 45 subjects developed severe reactions to the vaccine. Now, that might be in part due to still figuring out the dosing, and if these reactions were on the second dose, perhaps that one wasn't needed.

Nonetheless, if nearly 10% of the "healthy" subjects developed severe enough of a reaction to seek medical care, that could bode poorly for the general population.
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Old 05-26-20, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
More bad news for Moderna.

He experienced a severe reaction to Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate. He’s still a believer


4 out of 45 subjects developed severe reactions to the vaccine. Now, that might be in part due to still figuring out the dosing, and if these reactions were on the second dose, perhaps that one wasn't needed.

Nonetheless, if nearly 10% of the "healthy" subjects developed severe enough of a reaction to seek medical care, that could bode poorly for the general population.
Well the top Moderna execs already had their payday, so mission complete. These guys made millions off a company that has yet to produce a successful product. The American enterprise system is broken.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/05/22/inves...les/index.html
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Old 05-26-20, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Spaghetti Legs View Post
Well the top Moderna execs already had their payday, so mission complete. These guys made millions off a company that has yet to produce a successful product. The American enterprise system is broken.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/05/22/inves...les/index.html
OUCH!!!!

While the stock sales may well have been planned in advance, it is quite possible the executives manipulated information releases in relation to those sales.

It looks like there has been a sharp selloff over the last few days.
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Old 05-26-20, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
OUCH!!!!

While the stock sales may well have been planned in advance, it is quite possible the executives manipulated information releases in relation to those sales.

It looks like there has been a sharp selloff over the last few days.
Yeah, it was all legal, but you have to think making some money was in someone’s mind releasing non peer reviewed early results.
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Old 05-26-20, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Spaghetti Legs View Post
Yeah, it was all legal, but you have to think making some money was in someone’s mind releasing non peer reviewed early results.
It may, or may not have been legal if the company knew as many as 10% of the test subjects had experienced severe reactions to the vaccine, and deliberately released positive reviews while hiding negative information until after the stock sales in order to paint a false picture.

Of course, that may indicate a robust immune reaction, and only needing a single dose, but it might also indicate that people should be tested for immunity before receiving the vaccine.
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Old 05-26-20, 05:01 PM
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I don't want to sound naive, but isn't this sort of thing scrutinized pretty closely by the SEC? If there was any evidence of an intent to defraud, they'd be in it pretty deep, and this is not something that is going to slip under the radar.
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