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Are vaccines the light at the end of the tunnel?


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6 hours ago, TeeRick said:

Yes --- and also will the virus start to mutate around the vaccine-induced immunity as the population becomes more vaccinated?  Then an alternative vaccine will need to be made.  But that should be straight forward with the mRNA technology.

I am not that concerned about mutations that would impact the vaccine.  They might happen, but in the case of COVID the horn, which is what enables it to infect humans, is the key genetic material used in the vaccines.

 

So any mutation would have to eliminate that genetic material, while still staying infectious in humans. It might happen, but for it to do so and remain as highly infectious in not something I would be overly concerned about.

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8 hours ago, KnowTheScore said:

 

Very on point question

 

Flu vaccine immunity doesn't last very long.  Wanes after a few months:

 

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/04/how-long-do-vaccines-last-surprising-answers-may-help-protect-people-longer

 

 

The other issue is new strains.

 

Manufacturers say they can easily "tweak" their vaccines to adapt to new strains which is great, but that doesn't address the huge logistical issues in re-vaccinated everyone and doing so repeatedly every time a new strain appears that requires a vaccine "tweak".

 

We will undoubtedly end up just like Flu vaccines with the vulnerable needing repeated regular shots.

 

You obviously are an expert.  Interesting comment that seems in opposition to the reality that after a year that COVID is still much the same as a year ago with the vaccine 95% effective.  Very different from flu.  

Any thought on how long a significant level of antibodies remains in a recovered or vaccinated person is pure speculation, but so far those infected a year ago show antibodies.  We will see how long for the vaccine come summer.  

The research data is growing and AZ has mentioned research into combining flu and COVID into one shot.

Hmmmmmm.

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Preliminary data from Pfizer for phase 1 and 2 participants suggests 2-3 years of immunity!  Yes this is a small group, and yeah they got all sorts of different doses of the vaccine, and this is unpublished and extrapolated at the 6 month antibody test they just got drawn but still, that would be fantastic news if it came to be true for all.  We should know more from the early phase 3 participants within 2 months...  Here is hoping.

 

As far as the mutations are concerned, it is a very real worry down the line.  Everything that rapidly spreads, grows and multiplies mutates by nature.  COVID19 has been mutating since day one, which is how they trace what part of the world some strains have come from (China/Italy/Iran back in March, etc).  It's like an accelerated "evolution" that is taking place in front of our eyes.  Eventually, a certain bad mutation will have selective pressure to stay in circulation in our society once enough people are vaccinated, and that one will likely be more resistant to the vaccine than the versions of the virus we have circulating now.

 

So when let's say half the population gets these vaccines by July 2021, the version of the virus still circulating and spreading at that time will be more likely to be resistant to the vaccine by mutation because the virus that is affected by the vaccine will have been choked off from society thanks to all of our vaccination efforts in the Spring.  Therfore, mutations will be a much bigger issue come next Fall/Winter than now.  That is why the vaccination effort has to be a giant blitz and has to happen around the world (not just US and EU) and very quickly -- to avoid virus just "hanging around" in communities and getting the opportunity to resist the vaccine.  (Kind of like antibiotic resistance.  The purpose of taking all 14 days of your antibiotics is so that you don't let some left over bacteria hang around that is already resistant to the antibiotic and then let it multiply. Because then you have antibiotic resistant bacteria in your body.). 

 

Astra Zeneca messing up their trial and then faking it with an "average" efficacy really set back the US vaccination effort.  I think everyone was counting on at least 100M doses from them to be available by now!  And now it doesn't look like it is going to get approved in the US at all -- at least not with the data they just presented.  So our only hope right now is J and J and they have NO efficacy data whatsoever yet.  Let's hope it's at least 75% so there is enough public confidence...  SIGH.

 

We are still having some major issues getting enough vaccine to fellow health care workers this week and next week who really need it.  This roll out has been really bumpy and super slow compared to what was expected by the end of 2020 based on comments from the administration.  Very sorry to see how much they ignored this part of the whole process!!

 

 

 

 

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An excellent PPT presentation by the CDC on the phased roll out of the vaccines.  The money is in the last 3 slides.  Basically they are estimating 4-5 weeks for Phase 1A. Then another 5-6 weeks for Phase 1B and then 2-3 months for 1C.  So people who have no risk factors (Phase 2: healthy adults and children) would not even start to get a vaccine until 5 months from now.  The graphic at the end of the slideshow demonstrates how this would change based on manufacturing capabilities but in the end, it doesn't seem to change all that much.  We are still looking at May/June/July for healthy individuals to start receiving the vaccine.  And mid to late Spring for people with risk factors. VERY FRUSTRATING!

 

https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/meetings/downloads/slides-2020-12/slides-12-20/02-COVID-Dooling.pdf

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3 hours ago, kath00 said:

Astra Zeneca messing up their trial and then faking it with an "average" efficacy really set back the US vaccination effort.  I think everyone was counting on at least 100M doses from them to be available by now!  And now it doesn't look like it is going to get approved in the US at all -- at least not with the data they just presented.  So our only hope right now is J and J and they have NO efficacy data whatsoever yet.  Let's hope it's at least 75% so there is enough public confidence...  SIGH.

 

 

Astrazeneca did not "mess up" they ordered a concentrated batch from a Italian laboratory which turned out not to be concentrated as agreed with the lab. Astrazeneca reported this as soon as it was discovered early on this year. 

The regulatory authorities were well aware of the dosing error at the time and it was the regulatory authority that gave the go ahead to continue the trial using two different dose regimens

Astrazeneca/Oxford did not fake anything and everything they did was with the full approval of the regulatory authorities.

What they did do wrong was miscommunicate the efficacy to the press and public which they have admitted could have been done far better.

All data sets are in with the UK regulator and we should see approval over the next few weeks.

The US regulator has decided to wait until the dataset from the US phase 3 trial before making a decision on Astrazeneca/Oxford vaccine.

 

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5 hours ago, kath00 said:

An excellent PPT presentation by the CDC on the phased roll out of the vaccines.  The money is in the last 3 slides.  Basically they are estimating 4-5 weeks for Phase 1A. Then another 5-6 weeks for Phase 1B and then 2-3 months for 1C.  So people who have no risk factors (Phase 2: healthy adults and children) would not even start to get a vaccine until 5 months from now.  The graphic at the end of the slideshow demonstrates how this would change based on manufacturing capabilities but in the end, it doesn't seem to change all that much.  We are still looking at May/June/July for healthy individuals to start receiving the vaccine.  And mid to late Spring for people with risk factors. VERY FRUSTRATING!

 

https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/meetings/downloads/slides-2020-12/slides-12-20/02-COVID-Dooling.pdf

Why so frustrating?  This effort overall has produced at least two and maybe more very efficacious COVID vaccines and those most at risk are being vaccinated (HCW's and Nursing home residents) as we speak in less than one year.  This is remarkable not frustrating.

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7 hours ago, kath00 said:

Preliminary data from Pfizer for phase 1 and 2 participants suggests 2-3 years of immunity!  Yes this is a small group, and yeah they got all sorts of different doses of the vaccine, and this is unpublished and extrapolated at the 6 month antibody test they just got drawn but still, that would be fantastic news if it came to be true for all.  We should know more from the early phase 3 participants within 2 months...  Here is hoping.

 

As far as the mutations are concerned, it is a very real worry down the line.  Everything that rapidly spreads, grows and multiplies mutates by nature.  COVID19 has been mutating since day one, which is how they trace what part of the world some strains have come from (China/Italy/Iran back in March, etc).  It's like an accelerated "evolution" that is taking place in front of our eyes.  Eventually, a certain bad mutation will have selective pressure to stay in circulation in our society once enough people are vaccinated, and that one will likely be more resistant to the vaccine than the versions of the virus we have circulating now.

 

So when let's say half the population gets these vaccines by July 2021, the version of the virus still circulating and spreading at that time will be more likely to be resistant to the vaccine by mutation because the virus that is affected by the vaccine will have been choked off from society thanks to all of our vaccination efforts in the Spring.  Therfore, mutations will be a much bigger issue come next Fall/Winter than now.  That is why the vaccination effort has to be a giant blitz and has to happen around the world (not just US and EU) and very quickly -- to avoid virus just "hanging around" in communities and getting the opportunity to resist the vaccine.  (Kind of like antibiotic resistance.  The purpose of taking all 14 days of your antibiotics is so that you don't let some left over bacteria hang around that is already resistant to the antibiotic and then let it multiply. Because then you have antibiotic resistant bacteria in your body.). 

 

Astra Zeneca messing up their trial and then faking it with an "average" efficacy really set back the US vaccination effort.  I think everyone was counting on at least 100M doses from them to be available by now!  And now it doesn't look like it is going to get approved in the US at all -- at least not with the data they just presented.  So our only hope right now is J and J and they have NO efficacy data whatsoever yet.  Let's hope it's at least 75% so there is enough public confidence...  SIGH.

 

We are still having some major issues getting enough vaccine to fellow health care workers this week and next week who really need it.  This roll out has been really bumpy and super slow compared to what was expected by the end of 2020 based on comments from the administration.  Very sorry to see how much they ignored this part of the whole process!!

 

 

 

 

A few things in response to your post as you raise interesting issues.  Thank you.

 

First- I believe that it is hard to extrapolate from a few subject's antibody levels at 6 months how that would translate to long lasting immunity over 2-3 years.  Also long lasting immunity might be more related to T-Cell responses not antibodies for this virus.  So we just need to wait longer and see. 

 

Second- it just might be that natural immunity from infection might be different than the immunity against the vaccine's target antigen (SPIKE protein).  SPIKE is highly conserved and the virus absolutely needs it for cell entry.  So it is an excellent vaccine target.  Mutations will happen in SPIKE of course but so far to a minor extent.  The immune system makes multiple antibodies to different regions of SPIKE  after vaccination and also against multiple T-Cell epitopes.  So for the current vaccine to be ineffective the virus would need to make very significant changes to SPIKE and these changes would then need to be as viable, infectious and disease causing, or more so,  than the current virus.  Could happen but not very likely IMO.

 

Third- Vaccine is being distributed.  Yes there are a few bumps in the road.  This is an unprecedented effort.  I am willing to give the huge number of people contributing to this effort right now a bit of a break.  The CDC and the states have handled the planning and distribution and the rules are different for each state.

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10 minutes ago, TeeRick said:

To all of you who have kept this thread exciting and active by your posts and comments.....

 

Please have a wonderful holiday-  whatever version you enjoy celebrating at this time of year.  😄

It has definitely been an eye-opening thread and I personally want to extend a sincere thank you for your continued thoughts over these past months as well as to the many others that have made contributions to this thread. Here's to hoping everyone has a wonderful holiday season and continues to stay safe until we can all go cruising again!!

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4 hours ago, TeeRick said:

Why so frustrating?  This effort overall has produced at least two and maybe more very efficacious COVID vaccines and those most at risk are being vaccinated (HCW's and Nursing home residents) as we speak in less than one year.  This is remarkable not frustrating.

I agree completely that what has been accomplished is remarkable but I also feel frustrated.  For one thing, all along the experts had been saying that the virus is so deadly for those over 65, and yet when the CDC recommendation comes out, those of us 65-75 have to wait until healthy 20 year old grocery stockers are vaccinated.  I'm absolutely not saying they are not important, but if they do catch it (and that risk is not real high for that job I am guessing), they are much, much, much less likely to be hospitalized or die.  That's just an example. 

 

So now we are grouped in Phase 1c, which consists of 65 million people!  And IMHO opinion, some of the occupations considered 'essential' who are in that group really qualify more as desirable than essential.  For example, Is it really just as important to have construction workers working than saving the lives of vulnerable 65-75 year olds and those with serious risk factors?  I am not against construction workers - but perhaps in this grouping we only vaccinate the ones working on necessary repairs rather than prioritize new buildings and remodeling?  I know it gets complicated, but we are talking about saving lives here.

 

Dr. Fauci, who I respect very much, had also on occasion been known to say that anyone who wanted the vaccine would be able to get it by late spring.  Given the slower than expected start of the vaccination process, and the current groupings of priorities, as a supposedly high risk 69 year old I doubt I will even have it by late spring.

 

So I get what you are saying and I really respect those who developed these vaccines at such incredible speeds.  But I remain frustrated at some of the priorities as well as the uncoordinated way vaccination is being handled (but that gets into politics and don't want to go there).

 

Anyway..........have a great holiday and maybe we'll sail together someday🙂

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I am not that knowledgable about how the vaccine is being distributed, but I hope the plan has  not left out at least some economic incentives for rapid distribution.   It seems to me that the doses have already been purchased, so all the incentive for the drug companies may be fulfilled after the first initial delivery to the government for distribution.  Maybe the companies giving the shots have some incentive for the number of doses given.

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1 hour ago, phoenix_dream said:

I agree completely that what has been accomplished is remarkable but I also feel frustrated.  For one thing, all along the experts had been saying that the virus is so deadly for those over 65, and yet when the CDC recommendation comes out, those of us 65-75 have to wait until healthy 20 year old grocery stockers are vaccinated.  I'm absolutely not saying they are not important, but if they do catch it (and that risk is not real high for that job I am guessing), they are much, much, much less likely to be hospitalized or die.  That's just an example. 

 

 

This is the literal fatal flaw in the distribution plan.  

 

It begs the question "what is the problem we're trying to solve?".  If we're trying to prevent deaths, then we should vaccinate those most likely to die if they fall ill.  If we're trying to protect the ability of hospitals to function, then we should lessen their workload by vaccinating those most likely to fall seriously ill.   

 

DW and I are not in high-risk demographics in any way.  She's slated to receive the vaccine soon as a result of her employment.  Neither of us would get the vaccine ahead of our loved ones in high-risk groups if given a choice. 

 

I'm afraid that we'll continue to watch the media dwell on the death toll of the disease, yet nearly every death will have been preventable once we hit ~50 million TEDs (thanks markeb)

 

 

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5 hours ago, TeeRick said:

Also Lena says "Happy Holidays"!

 

IMG_1402.jpg

 

1 hour ago, VitaminSea53 said:

Merry Christmas from my critter to yours!  

B22960E1-6C8F-45F7-93B1-3A6A7EF1F905.jpeg

 

Chill, dudes, what's all the excitement about? Saint Nick and his reindeer buddies are still hours away!

 

IMG_1953.thumb.jpeg.830b779b7e2b2f62e6ad9518730895ba.jpeg

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5 hours ago, Fouremco said:

 

 

Chill, dudes, what's all the excitement about? Saint Nick and his reindeer buddies are still hours away!

 

IMG_1953.thumb.jpeg.830b779b7e2b2f62e6ad9518730895ba.jpeg

 

Lol, Fouremco, we used to have a delightful little Havanese named Riley who loved to sleep on the back of our couch exactly like your little fur-buddy in the photo.  Brings back some warm, happy memories.  

 

Best wishes to everyone for a very happy Holiday, stay safe and well!  Thanks to all for contributing to this post, it's been very informative and actually very calming during a time of chaos, conflicting reports and a lot of disinformation.  It's been great to come here and get some insights without the hysterics.  Thank you.

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20 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

those of us 65-75 have to wait until healthy 20 year old grocery stockers are vaccinated

 

Hey at least you are in a phase! Missing the mark by 2 years, we are at the very back of the pack, not really even in a phase unless you count "everyone else".  I personally think they should work age tiers into the distribution (I think they are in the UK) but my vote doesn't count.  It is what it is, it isn't going to change.  I am just happy that we have vaccines and 1. hope soon we have turned a corner and 2. that I will have proof of vaccination before I cruise in August.

Still fortunate to live in this country of plenty.  Have a wonderful holiday season people.

M

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12 hours ago, Hugahav said:

 

Lol, Fouremco, we used to have a delightful little Havanese named Riley who loved to sleep on the back of our couch exactly like your little fur-buddy in the photo.  Brings back some warm, happy memories.  

 

Best wishes to everyone for a very happy Holiday, stay safe and well!  Thanks to all for contributing to this post, it's been very informative and actually very calming during a time of chaos, conflicting reports and a lot of disinformation.  It's been great to come here and get some insights without the hysterics.  Thank you.

Ours is a Coton de Tuléar, originating from the island of Madagascar. The breed is very similar to the Havanese, both in looks and temperament, so I'm not surprised that our two would  both choose to snooze like that. I love your "Hugahav" name, the meaning of which escaped me until your post. Lovely! 

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16 minutes ago, mimbecky said:

 

Hey at least you are in a phase! Missing the mark by 2 years, we are at the very back of the pack, not really even in a phase unless you count "everyone else".  I personally think they should work age tiers into the distribution (I think they are in the UK) but my vote doesn't count.  It is what it is, it isn't going to change.  I am just happy that we have vaccines and 1. hope soon we have turned a corner and 2. that I will have proof of vaccination before I cruise in August.

Still fortunate to live in this country of plenty.  Have a wonderful holiday season people.

M

Realizing there are no easy answers, it's definitely going to be interesting to see how the implementation process in our state will actually unfold once the initial "institutional" phase (e.g., hospitals, senior homes, etc) has been completed.

 

We're both in our late 60s, so we should be able to just show our ID cards when it's time for us to get our shots at a nearby pharmacy, whenever and wherever that might be. However, not quite sure what verification process will be required if someone has to "prove" they have an applicable underlying condition(s)? Maybe for those folks they will need to get the vaccine from their primary physician? I can also see medical teams going to group settings such as local schools, police/fire stations and other large group settings to give vaccines. But what about ...

 

 Like I said, if nothing else it's going to be interesting to see HOW this all plays out in the next couple of months.

 

Happy Holidays everyone and please stay safe!!


 
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On 12/24/2020 at 3:15 PM, D C said:

 

This is the literal fatal flaw in the distribution plan.  

 

It begs the question "what is the problem we're trying to solve?".  If we're trying to prevent deaths, then we should vaccinate those most likely to die if they fall ill.  If we're trying to protect the ability of hospitals to function, then we should lessen their workload by vaccinating those most likely to fall seriously ill.   

 

DW and I are not in high-risk demographics in any way.  She's slated to receive the vaccine soon as a result of her employment.  Neither of us would get the vaccine ahead of our loved ones in high-risk groups if given a choice. 

 

I'm afraid that we'll continue to watch the media dwell on the death toll of the disease, yet nearly every death will have been preventable once we hit ~50 million TEDs (thanks markeb)

 

 

I'm not sure if it is a fatal flaw.  But the priority should be more data-driven at this point.  I agree it is definitely frustrating to those (of us) just a bit away from 65 to be lumped in with much younger healthy adults in vaccine priority.   In fact some countries will use a different range.  Why does the US focus on the mid-ranges like 65?  Maybe because we have been conditioned as a society that 65 is a magic number for retirement and SS benefits and Medicare? But not really relevant for COVID except that is how data is collected, cut and reported.    It seems to me that for priority by age we should be using four age ranges (70+, then 60-70,  and then 50-60,  followed by 18- 50) which are are the better ranges to address severe COVID disease and death risk.   Of course the age priority in some cases conflicts with the designated risk categories of occupation and institutional status and health status.  And then the states make their own rules too.  This will never be satisfying to everybody.  

 

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid_weekly/index.htm

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