Category Archives: Covid-19/2019-nCoV Dr. Lucey Q&A

Seychelles reports rising cases in vaccinated and unvaccinated: Global implications for variants vs. vaccines?

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On Tuesday, May 4, the Seychelles news agency reported: “There are currently 1,068 active cases numbers, among which 84 percent are Seychellois and 16 percent are foreigners. Some 65 percent of the active cases are unvaccinated or have received only one dose, whilst the remaining have taken both […]

Merck announces agreement with India for investigational oral drug molnupiravir with potential implications for over 100 countries

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On April 27 Merck issued a press release titled, “Amid Humanitarian Crisis in India, Merck Announces Voluntary Licensing Agreements with Five Indian Generics Manufacturers to Accelerate and Expand Global Access to Molnupiravir, an Investigational Oral Therapeutic for the Treatment of COVID-19.” Merck stated that it “has entered into […]

WHO provides update on India’s surging epidemic second wave and variant B.1.617

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On April 27 the World Health Organization included in its very helpful weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 a section on variants, including the one termed “B.1.617” (formerly mis-termed “double mutant”). WHO placed into context the rapidly rising numbers of cases in India with the lower and decreasing numbers […]

FDA should convene its vaccine advisory committee for COVID vaccine EUAs for children

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On April 9 a request was filed with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for Emergency Use Authorization of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for 12-15 year olds. Below are four reasons the FDA should convene its Vaccines and Related Biologic Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) for all COVID-19 vaccine EUA […]

The COVID Archipelago: Volcanoes and variants

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA Most archipelagos are created by volcanoes erupting from the ocean floor. Imagining such volcanoes as hotspots of SARS-CoV-2/COVID infections, the virus variants can be imagined as an archipelago of islands above the surface. Each new island has the potential to become its own volcano and spread new variant […]

Four problems with the lab origin hypothesis of SARS-CoV-2 and the WHO-China study

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA Today the Joint WHO-China Study 14 January-10 February 2021 for the “WHO-convened Global Study of origins of SARS-CoV-2: China Part” was posted on the World Health Organization’s website.  Zero patients with COVID were reported before December 8, 2021, yet 174 patients were found between Dec. 8 to 31, […]

As Variant B.1.427/B.1.429 spreads in California, Nevada and Arizona, HHS stops direct ordering of the monoclonal Bamlanivimab

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this month has provided helpful updates on its website focusing on SARS-CoV-2 variants and their prevalence state-by-state. This information helps clinicians understand where variants are as well as make decisions on use of monoclonal antibodies that have U.S. Food […]

“The mutating H5N8 strain of avian flu has a high risk of human-to-human transmission” Russian authorities warn March 12.   

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On Feb. 20, 2021 Russia reported the first-ever human infections with H5N8 avian influenza involving seven poultry farm workers in the southern region of Astrakhan Oblast.  They were infected after a Dec. 3-11, 2020 outbreak of H5N8 on a poultry farm. Although Russia reported a government lab was […]

Will the next “WHO-convened Global Study of the origins of SARS-CoV-2” be in SE Asia, Europe, or the Americas?

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA By July 31, 2020 the World Health Organization and China had agreed in writing to a highly-consequential document with long-term implications titled “WHO-convened Global Study of the Origins of SARS-CoV-2: Terms of References for the China Part”. This title, as well as multiple statements in the text such […]

First multivalent vaccine with a variant (B.1.351) begins: Will it protect against other E484K variants?

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By Daniel R. Lucey MD, MPH, FIDSA On March 10 Moderna announced that it had begun vaccinating volunteers in a study of 60 persons previously “vaccinated with mRNA-1273 to receive a single booster dose of either: 20 µg of a variant-specific booster candidate, mRNA-1273.351, based on the B.1.351 variant first identified in the Republic of South Africa (N=20) […]