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Fragile Bird

Taking it to the Streets - Covid-19 #12

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They have started human vaccine trials in Oxford, England. If they go well, they hope to have finished by September or October.

Just turned on CNN in the middle of an interview, I don't know what hospital or company this is.

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Singapore Contained the Coronavirus for Months. Now It Has One of the Worst Outbreaks in Asia.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/04/singapore-coronavirus-outbreak-migrant-workers.html

 

Despite Singapore’s early vigilance in addressing the pandemic—including extensive contact tracing—the government’s response had a blind spot. The key to what happened lies in how Singapore, a country of 5.8 million people, has treated its 1 million migrant workers.

Singapore relies on foreign labor to build and maintain its gleaming infrastructure. But many of the low-wage migrant workers, mostly from South Asia, live in dense dormitories on the outskirts of the island nation. Rights groups and activists worried early on about the government’s negligence of the migrant population. In March, Transient Workers Count Too, or TWC2, a Singaporean nonprofit dedicated to improving conditions for migrant workers, warned of a potential cluster outbreak in the dorms, where it’s impossible to socially distance. Migrants often sleep 12 to 20 per room, in bunk beds, and they’re packed into the back of trucks on their commute to work each day. Some told the Guardian the shared bathrooms often don’t have soap or enough water for showers or toilets. The group also noted that employer policies often discourage workers from admitting they’re ill or seeking medical help. “The risk of a new cluster among this group remains undeniable,” TWC2 wrote.


Over the past few weeks, as COVID-19 has traveled through the dorms, Singapore has quickly lost control of its outbreak. (While the country was initially worried about a second wave from Singaporeans returning home from overseas, those cases have been largely controlled.) The Ministry of Health said that 982 of the 1,037 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday were migrant workers. About 80 percent of all cases in the country can now be traced to the dorms.

 

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5 hours ago, Impmk2 said:

I can't see a patent not being quickly and unapologetically being broken in the event of price gouging. I believe there's provisions to do so under international law in the event of health emergencies - African countries broke patents on anti-retroviral medications during the aids epidemic.

The main problem would be petty retaliation from the US, especially if Trump is still president.

ETA: sorry to interrupt the mayo discussion!

The other problem if the US is the first one to develop the vaccine is going to be the unrestrained triumphalism of Trump and rubbing it in the faces of other countries. And you know he's just going to talk about how it will bring billions to the country and he'll use it as a blunt negotiating tool for everything and refuse to give it to China or the WHO. So, terrible as it sounds, I hope the US does not discover a vaccine and that it's someone else instead.

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2 hours ago, Jeor said:

The other problem if the US is the first one to develop the vaccine is going to be the unrestrained triumphalism of Trump and rubbing it in the faces of other countries. And you know he's just going to talk about how it will bring billions to the country and he'll use it as a blunt negotiating tool for everything and refuse to give it to China or the WHO. So, terrible as it sounds, I hope the US does not discover a vaccine and that it's someone else instead.

Not a lawyer, but I don't think you can patent a vaccine the same as a drug. A vaccine is a bit of the virus or a weakened or inactivated form of the virus, and you can't patent that. And if anyone has a patent on the virus is will be the Chinese lab that made it  :leaving:

You can patent the vaccine formulation, ie, the other non-viral components of the vaccine, but a lot of the other components of the vaccine will be basically off the shelf chemicals that are already licensed under an existing patent, or have been on the market long enough that they are off patent. Most likely as vaccine components have been around a long time most of them will be off patent. So it's really the unique formulation that you would be patenting, and there is unlikely to be one formulation that would be an effective vaccine.

Unless a pharma company invents a new chemical that is absolutely necessary for the vaccine to work I don;t think patenting is going to be uch of an issue if at all. There might also be international laws and treaties that require equitable distribution of vaccines in these sorts of emergency situation. Though I don't know anything about that, so it might be highly wishful thinking.

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39 minutes ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Not a lawyer, but I don't think you can patent a vaccine the same as a drug. A vaccine is a bit of the virus or a weakened or inactivated form of the virus, and you can't patent that. And if anyone has a patent on the virus is will be the Chinese lab that made it  :leaving:

 

Given that there's a successful patent on the human BRCA2 gene, a DNA sequence (which I find insane but :dunno:), I don't share your optimism about an amino acid sequence. Especially if you're modifying the sequence to conjugate the protein to something more immunogenic, which would be pretty normal for a subunit vaccine.

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I think this whole self isolation thing might be falling apart in London this weekend.

I noticed a lot more cars on the road yesterday. Last week hardly any but yesterday everyone seemed to be driving somewhere.

Then I saw reports that there were tons more people walking around london.

Then last night I’m pretty sure my next door neighbours had visitors and were having a barbecue 

Then someone I know posted a video of herself getting on a tube and going out to see her friends, as if it was cool.

That was just yesterday. The weather is really good here right now so it’s understandable but I’m getting the sense that people believe the whole thing is mostly over and they can go back to how it was.

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19 minutes ago, Heartofice said:

I think this whole self isolation thing might be falling apart in London this weekend.

I noticed a lot more cars on the road yesterday. Last week hardly any but yesterday everyone seemed to be driving somewhere.

Then I saw reports that there were tons more people walking around london.

Then last night I’m pretty sure my next door neighbours had visitors and were having a barbecue 

Then someone I know posted a video of herself getting on a tube and going out to see her friends, as if it was cool.

That was just yesterday. The weather is really good here right now so it’s understandable but I’m getting the sense that people believe the whole thing is mostly over and they can go back to how it was.

Yeah Glasgow West End was looking busy yesterday inxluding thr Botanical Gardens

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6 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

They have started human vaccine trials in Oxford, England. If they go well, they hope to have finished by September or October.

Just turned on CNN in the middle of an interview, I don't know what hospital or company this is.

Finished what by September or October? I suspect it is only Phase I-II. According to the wiki on vaccine candidates, the earliest duration date of the 10 candidates they've tabled is November 2020 from a US-South Korea development. The others roll on into 2021 and a couple into 2023. 

There's no mention if these durations include Phase III trials. Phase III vaccine trials typically include subjects in the tens of thousands (to account for a 1 in 10,000 reaction for example), and then double that number for your placebo group.

4 hours ago, Jeor said:

The other problem if the US is the first one to develop the vaccine is going to be the unrestrained triumphalism of Trump and rubbing it in the faces of other countries. And you know he's just going to talk about how it will bring billions to the country and he'll use it as a blunt negotiating tool for everything and refuse to give it to China or the WHO. So, terrible as it sounds, I hope the US does not discover a vaccine and that it's someone else instead.

Also the possibility that a Chinese developer will suceed first. Would the US accept this vaccine for its masses? Would Trump go maga cap in hand to Xi for exclusive licensing. Me personally, I'd get in a queue for any vaccine that has proven safety and efficacy - but the world is in an anxious period nowadays. 

2 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Not a lawyer, but I don't think you can patent a vaccine the same as a drug. A vaccine is a bit of the virus or a weakened or inactivated form of the virus, and you can't patent that. And if anyone has a patent on the virus is will be the Chinese lab that made it  :leaving:

I'm not sure you could patent a vaccine either. It's not a cheap (or quick) process. The Lancet had a report from 2018 esimating the cost of developing vaccines.

The cost of developing a single epidemic infectious disease vaccine from preclinical trials through to end of phase 2a is US$31–68 million (US$14–159 million range), assuming no risk of failure. 

Distribution to the masses is also about licensing and regulation, from what I could find. I'm not sure which standard China would apply to if they developed the vaccine first. 

embolded mine.

 

Quote

 

The United States Public Service Act of 1944 mandated that the federal government issue licenses for biological products, including vaccines. After a poliovirus vaccine accident in 1954 (known as the Cutter incident), the Division of Biologics Standards was formed to oversee vaccine safety and regulation. Later, the DBS was renamed the Bureau of Biologics, and it became part of the Food and Drug Administration. It is now know as the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.

Elsewhere

In the European Union, the European Medicines Agency supervises regulation of vaccines and other drugs. A committee of the World Health Organization makes recommendations for biological products used internationally. Many countries have adopted the WHO standards.

...

After a successful Phase III trial, the vaccine developer will submit a Biologics License Application to the FDA. Then the FDA will inspect the factory where the vaccine will be made and approve the labeling of the vaccine.

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Impmk2 said:

Given that there's a successful patent on the human BRCA2 gene, a DNA sequence (which I find insane but :dunno:), I don't share your optimism about an amino acid sequence. Especially if you're modifying the sequence to conjugate the protein to something more immunogenic, which would be pretty normal for a subunit vaccine.

Intellectual property is a gentlemen's agreement that is going to be ditched as soon as governments find it necessary. It someone tries to use IP as a leverage tool against others countries, the said countries are going to start copying any prospective medicine a split of second after.

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23 hours ago, Liffguard said:

Is Trump actually worse than Bush? Honest question, not being rhetorical. Trump is definitely terrible, but Bush is a mass murderer and torturer (amongst many other awful things) on a scale that Trump has yet to match. Trump certainly still has time to do even worse things, and I wouldn't be surprised if by the end of his time in office (whenever that may be) he's unquestionably taken the title, I'm just not sure he's there yet.

I despised Bush so much. For starters I could never except him as legitimate after the 2000 election fiasco. And then we had 9/11 and invaded Iraq. At the time I was so upset I ended up going to protests in DC, NYC, Chicago. The administration just infuriated me, I didn't think it would be possible to ever have a worse President.

To make a long story short.....

I'd take W back in a heartbeat if it meant getting the human catastrophe known as Trump, the hell out of our White House. The man has absolutely No redeemable character. The only savings grace we've had thus far, has been that his own ineptitude has prevented some of his dimmer impulses. He a walking, talking biohazard.

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50 minutes ago, DireWolfSpirit said:

I despised Bush so much. For starters I could never except him as legitimate after the 2000 election fiasco. And then we had 9/11 and invaded Iraq. At the time I was so upset I ended up going to protests in DC, NYC, Chicago. The administration just infuriated me, I didn't think it would be possible to ever have a worse President.

To make a long story short.....

I'd take W back in a heartbeat if it meant getting the human catastrophe known as Trump, the hell out of our White House. The man has absolutely No redeemable character. The only savings grace we've had thus far, has been that his own ineptitude has prevented some of his dimmer impulses. He a walking, talking biohazard.

Oh snap, I thought this was the politics thread. Nvm rant then.

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3 hours ago, Heartofice said:

I think this whole self isolation thing might be falling apart in London this weekend.

I noticed a lot more cars on the road yesterday. Last week hardly any but yesterday everyone seemed to be driving somewhere.

Then I saw reports that there were tons more people walking around london.

Then last night I’m pretty sure my next door neighbours had visitors and were having a barbecue 

Then someone I know posted a video of herself getting on a tube and going out to see her friends, as if it was cool.

That was just yesterday. The weather is really good here right now so it’s understandable but I’m getting the sense that people believe the whole thing is mostly over and they can go back to how it was.

It depends on what people are doing though. Social distancing never had to mean that you stay inside all the time, it just meant stay the hell away from other people when you're out. If people have started figuring out ways of doing that, that's probably a good thing for everyone's sanity and the likelihood that people will adhere to the restrictions for a longer period.

OTOH, a BBQ or a hot tub with people clearly isn't social distancing. Some people are just morons. But hopefully many of the people going out are being responsible.

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6 minutes ago, Fez said:

Social distancing never had to mean that you stay inside all the time, it just meant stay the hell away from other people when you're out.

I think this is where governments in the next few weeks and months are going to have to get pretty specific and nuanced about what's allowed and what isn't. People will start chafing against the restrictions, so there's an understandable wish to at least cautiously open certain things, if not to restart the economy (which I think is going to only very slowly come back) to at least give people some variety or sanity.

I'm sure there are some things that can be relaxed that don't violate social distancing too much. The other day I was thinking that drive-in cinemas could be doing a roaring trade - people can stay in their cars to social distance, although maybe you'd have to limit it to a maximum of 2 people per car (who have to be living with you) or something like that.

 

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10 minutes ago, Fez said:

It depends on what people are doing though. Social distancing never had to mean that you stay inside all the time, it just meant stay the hell away from other people when you're out. If people have started figuring out ways of doing that, that's probably a good thing for everyone's sanity and the likelihood that people will adhere to the restrictions for a longer period.

OTOH, a BBQ or a hot tub with people clearly isn't social distancing. Some people are just morons. But hopefully many of the people going out are being responsible.

I can't even keep a proper distance on my way to work because a lot of people are enjoying the good weather and go for bike rides and walks in large groups. Bikes on the sidewalk and similar bullshit. I biker nearly hit me just a few days ago because it was getting dark and people with expensive bikes never install lights for some reason. A lot of people think that sidewalks are the proper place for sport and exercise for some reason.

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34 minutes ago, Fez said:

It depends on what people are doing though. Social distancing never had to mean that you stay inside all the time, it just meant stay the hell away from other people when you're out. If people have started figuring out ways of doing that, that's probably a good thing for everyone's sanity and the likelihood that people will adhere to the restrictions for a longer period.

OTOH, a BBQ or a hot tub with people clearly isn't social distancing. Some people are just morons. But hopefully many of the people going out are being responsible.

Yeah the interesting thing was this girls defence of going to see her friends was that she saw loads of people out and about in london that day, so surely what she did is less bad.

Except if everyone is social distancing , staying well away from everyone, then that is clearly better than getting on public transport and going to someone’s flat to hang out for a few hours with a bunch of other people.

Im worried more people are using this mentality to make decisions 

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A university in Sweden has developed a test that they say is essentially 100% sensitive and 100% specific for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies after controlling it against 100 confirmed positive and 300 confirmed negative samples; it has something to do with using something like 60 viral proteins from COVID-19 and requiring strong signals from two or more of them to consider confirmed. They're working on reducing the number to checking against 5-10 proteins that show the best indicators for positive/negative for any mass-produced test.  

They've tested 500 staff at Danderyd hospital (in the Stockholm region) and preliminary results are "much higher" than 2%-3% reported recently by a hospital in Wuhan. Will be interesting to see what that number is. Of course, hospital staff are generally much more at risk of infection than the general public, so whatever the result doesn't necessarily apply to Stockholm's population at large.

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12 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

They have started human vaccine trials in Oxford, England. If they go well, they hope to have finished by September or October.

Just turned on CNN in the middle of an interview, I don't know what hospital or company this is.

It's being lead by the University of Oxford.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52394485

5 hours ago, ithanos said:

Finished what by September or October? I suspect it is only Phase I-II. According to the wiki on vaccine candidates, the earliest duration date of the 10 candidates they've tabled is November 2020 from a US-South Korea development. The others roll on into 2021 and a couple into 2023. 

There's no mention if these durations include Phase III trials. Phase III vaccine trials typically include subjects in the tens of thousands (to account for a 1 in 10,000 reaction for example), and then double that number for your placebo group.

The trial Fragile Bird is referring to is the third one in the first table on the Wiki, which gives April 2020 to May 2021 as the duration. I think the September date might be for finishing the Phase II stage.

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1 hour ago, williamjm said:

It's being lead by the University of Oxford.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52394485

The trial Fragile Bird is referring to is the third one in the first table on the Wiki, which gives April 2020 to May 2021 as the duration. I think the September date might be for finishing the Phase II stage.

With all of these vaccines going on, there's going to be massive demand for large human trial populations which could be tricky to source. It could go either way, people might be desperate to try something out, or they might be especially worried about an untested vaccine knowing that this thing could still kill you.

And I'm no immunologist, but how do you test whether a vaccine works without deliberately exposing people to COVID-19? I suppose you could do an antibody count and compare that to people who've contracted it in the past and see if they match up. But that's assuming that once you've got it you can't get it again, which is still an open question.

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7 minutes ago, Jeor said:

With all of these vaccines going on, there's going to be massive demand for large human trial populations which couldi be tricky to source. It could go either way, people might be desperate to try something out, or they might be especially worried about an untested vaccine knowing that this thing could still kill you.

And I'm no immunologist, but how do you test whether a vaccine works without deliberately exposing people to COVID-19? I suppose you could do an antibody count and compare that to people who've contracted it in the past and see if they match up. But that's assuming that once you've got it you can't get it again, which is still an open question.

They will give the vaccine to people who are essential workers in health care or other fields where some exposure to COVID-19 is going to happen anyway, with of course testing them for antibodies first to make sure they have not already been exposed. The researchers don't deliberately expose people to COVID-19 themselves, they find people who would be exposed whether the vaccine was being tested or not.

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