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Moderna booster effective against omicron; new infections up 41%

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The primary information out there for Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine suggests a 3rd booster dose will probably be efficient towards omicron, the variant that’s quickly taking up the world.

Moderna stated early Monday that in a lab examine, blood from 20 individuals who obtained the 50-microgram Moderna booster had 37 occasions the variety of neutralizing antibodies as in comparison with blood from the identical quantity of people that solely obtained two pictures. Moderna had diminished the dose of its booster to half the dose of the unique two pictures to restrict unwanted side effects akin to fever, muscle aches and fatigue.

A bunch that obtained a 3rd shot of the upper, 100-microgram dose noticed an 83-fold soar in neutralizing antibodies towards omicron.

Dr. Eric Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Analysis Translational Institute, stated such a giant improve isn’t vital to offer safety. A study released earlier this month by Pfizer and its partner BioNTech confirmed {that a} third dose of their COVID-19 vaccine boosted neutralizing antibodies towards omicron greater than 25-fold, which must be protecting, Topol stated, although real-world research are wanted to show it.

“I believe it’s fairly encouraging,” he stated. “We’ll take any optimistic we are able to get.”

Additionally within the information:

►The NFL delayed three video games, the NBA postponed five, and the NHL stopped cross-border video games and shut down a sixth staff becaue of COVID-19 outbreaks.

►Canada reinstated a border COVID-19 testing requirement for brief journeys because the omicron variant spreads globally. 

📈Immediately’s numbers: The U.S. has recorded greater than 50.8 million confirmed COVID-19 instances and greater than 806,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. World totals: Greater than 274.8 million instances and 5.3 million deaths. Greater than 203.9 million People – 61.4% of the inhabitants – are totally vaccinated, according to the CDC.

📘What we’re studying: A examine by Oregon researchers finds that folks totally vaccinated towards COVID-19 who’ve breakthrough infections find yourself with what the authors call “super immunity.” They warning the vaccinated shouldn’t search COVID-19 an infection, however the “hybrid immunity” affords some solace for individuals who catch one regardless of having been vaccinated. 

Hold refreshing this web page for the newest information. Need extra? Join USA TODAY’s free Coronavirus Watch newsletter to obtain updates on to your inbox and join our Facebook group.

New infections up 41% from a month in the past

The U.S. is transferring towards Christmas in dramatically totally different form than it was earlier than Thanksgiving. A month in the past, case counts had been rising, to about 90,000 per day on common. For a lot of December instances appeared to hover round 120,000 however have lately leaped above 130,000 per day, Johns Hopkins information exhibits. In comparison with a month in the past, the tempo of recent instances nationally is up 41%.

Total, the CDC says about three-quarters of counties have excessive ranges of transmission. However the place you reside is necessary. The tempo of instances is up 393% in Hawaii, greater than tripled in Connecticut and New Jersey, and greater than doubled in Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. However instances seem to have fallen in at the least a 3rd of the states – down 72% in Montana, 61% in Wyoming, 58% in Alaska, 46% in Colorado.

Mike Stucka

New Zealand man dies from myocarditis linked to Pfizer vaccine

A 26-year-old man has died from myocarditis linked to the Pfizer vaccine, well being officers in New Zealand stated Monday.

Myocarditis, a type of coronary heart irritation, has been detected in a small number of vaccinated individuals. It’s treatable, is not particular to COVID-19 vaccines, and was a typical facet impact of the smallpox vaccine up to now, in keeping with the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. 

The person died inside two weeks of receiving his first dose, and a coroner decided that preliminary data has recognized myocarditis because the possible reason for demise, New Zealand’s COVID-19 Vaccine Unbiased Security Monitoring Board stated in a press release.

“With the present out there data, the board has thought-about that the myocarditis was most likely as a consequence of vaccination on this particular person,” the monitoring board’s assertion stated.

The assertion stated the advantages of vaccination with the Pfizer vaccine proceed to “drastically outweigh” the danger of such uncommon unwanted side effects, including that the COVID-19 an infection can itself be a reason for myocarditis in addition to different critical sicknesses.

Extra on myocarditis:

44 individuals on cruise ship check optimistic

No less than 44 individuals on board Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas ship that ended a seven-day cruise in Miami on Saturday were positive for COVID-19 during the sailing, the cruise line stated. These 44 individuals who examined optimistic represented 0.72% of the 6,074 passengers and crew members on board Symphony of the Seas, which left Miami on Dec. 11 and made stops in St. Maarten, St. Thomas, and Excellent Day at CocoCay (Royal Caribbean’s personal island), spokesperson Lyan Sierra-Caro informed USA TODAY.

Connor O’Dell, 29, stated a 66-year-old relative reported her signs to Royal Caribbean through the cruise. He stated neither a health care provider nor nurse gave her an in-depth bodily examination or requested her about preexisting circumstances.

“All of us knew the dangers of occurring the ship,” O’Dell informed USA TODAY. “The issue is that we have been promised a set of protocols (or) satisfactory medical staffing they usually have been by no means adhered to.”

Morgan Hines

Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker check optimistic for COVID-19

Senators Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, and Cory Booker, D-New Jersey, and Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colorado, have examined optimistic for COVID-19 in breakthrough instances with gentle signs, they introduced on Twitter.

“I usually check for COVID & whereas I examined detrimental earlier this week, at this time I examined optimistic with a breakthrough case. Fortunately, I’m solely experiencing gentle signs & am grateful for the safety offered towards critical sickness that comes from being vaccinated & boosted,” Warren wrote

Booker tweeted: “I discovered at this time that I examined optimistic for COVID-19 after first feeling signs on Saturday. My signs are comparatively gentle. I’m past grateful to have obtained two doses of vaccine and, extra lately, a booster – I’m sure that with out them I’d be doing a lot worse.”

The senators from Massachusetts and New Jersey have each been vocal proponents of the COVID-19 vaccine in Washington. Warren lost her older brother to the virus in Might 2020. The Democrats are simply two of a number of senators who’ve examined optimistic for COVID regardless of being totally vaccinated, together with Lindsay Graham, R-SC and John Hickenlooper, D-Colo.

The newest congrespositive exams come amid an increase of COVID-19 instances throughout the nation and the omicron variant, which Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s main infectious illnesses skilled, stated has an “extraordinary capability of spreading.”

– Celina Tebor, USA TODAY

Contributing: The Related Press; Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY

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