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Antibody testing suggests 2.7mn in New York could be COVID-19 infected

New York state egistered over 19,500 COVID-19 fatalities by Thursday, with over 15,000 in New York City, according the the Johns Hopkins’ tally.

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COVID-19 antibody testing

New York, April 24 : New York, the epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic in the US, has seen 13.9 per cent positive results in the state’s antibody tests, which means around 2.7 million people could be infected with the COVID-19, Governor Andrew Cuomo said.

Launched by the state’s health department earlier this week, the testing collected samples of 3,000 supermarket shoppers from 40 locations in 19 counties in the state, Xinhua news agency quoted Cuomo as saying on Thursday.

The preliminary results suggest the real number of total infected in the state’s 19.45 million people could be ten times higher than the official data, which stood at 263,754 on Thursday, according to the Johns Hopkins University.

People who have tested positive in the antibody testing are those who were infected with coronavirus and then recovered.

The testing offers a snapshot of the infection rate statewide and is considered a major step in determining when and how to restart the economy.

New York City has shown a 21.2 per cent positivity rate in the testing, higher than anywhere else in the state.

Long Island had a 16.7 per cent positivity rate, while 11.7 per cent in Westchester county and Rockland county tested positive. The rest of the state registered 3.6 per cent.

The racial breakdown shows the positivity rates of Asians, Blacks, Latinos and Whites in the state are 11.7, 22.1, 22.5 and 9.1 per cent, respectively.

Meanwhile, 12 per cent of females tested positive and 15.9 per cent of males tested positive.

The results also indicated that the real mortality rate could be around 0.5 per cent in the state, much lower than the 7 per cent calculated from official numbers.

However, it’s not sure how telling the results are.

“These are people who were out and about shopping. They were not people who were in their homes, they were not people who were isolated, they were not people who were quarantined,” said Cuomo.

Oxiris Barbot, New York City’s Commissioner of Health, said on Thursday that the 138,000- plus confirmed COVID-19 cases in the city is just “the tip of the iceberg” as diagnostic testing was very limited at the beginning of the outbreak.

“It wouldn’t surprise me if at this point in time we have probably close to a million New Yorkers who have been exposed to COVID-19,” she said at the mayor’s daily briefing.

New York state egistered over 19,500 COVID-19 fatalities by Thursday, with over 15,000 in New York City, according the the Johns Hopkins’ tally.

Disaster

US stocks rally after promising Covid vaccine results from Moderna

Earlier, Moderna’s experimental vaccine, mRNA-1273 which is designed to protect against the Covid-19 virus was generally well tolerated and prompted neutralising antibody activity in healthy adults, say researchers.

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Vaccine

New York, Jul 15 : The Wall Street on Wednesday cheered the promising early results from US-based pharmaceutical major Moderna’s experimental vaccine, mRNA-1273, and solid earnings from Goldman Sachs Group.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 338 points in early-morning trading. The S&P 500 rose 1.1 per cent while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.9 per cent, reports CNBC.

The three main US stock indexes have recovered most of their losses from the coronavirus-led downturn.

Earlier, Moderna’s experimental vaccine, mRNA-1273 which is designed to protect against the Covid-19 virus was generally well tolerated and prompted neutralising antibody activity in healthy adults, say researchers.

Moderna stocks surged 17.8 per cent to a record high after the news.mRNA-1273 vaccine is designed to induce neutralising antibodies directed at a portion of the coronavirus “spike” protein, which the virus uses to bind to and enter human cells.

In the Phase 1 trial, led by Lisa A Jackson of Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle, the 45 participants ages 18 to 55 years received the candidate vaccine.Three groups of 15 participants received two intramuscular injections, 28 days apart, of either 25, 100 or 250 micrograms (mcg) of the investigational vaccine.

The results from the first stage of Moderna’s vaccine trial showed the first 45 participants developed antibodies to the virus.

The study showed that regarding safety, no serious adverse events were reported. The interim analysis included results of tests measuring levels of vaccine-induced neutralising activity through day 43 after the second injection.

Two doses of vaccine prompted high levels of neutralising antibody activity that was above the average values seen in convalescent sera obtained from persons with confirmed Covid-19 disease.

However, more than half of the participants reported fatigue, headache, chills, myalgia or pain at the injection site. Systemic adverse events were more common following the second vaccination and in those who received the highest vaccine dose.

“The mRNA-1273 vaccine-induced anti-SARS-CoV-2 (coronavirus) immune responses in all participants, and no trial-limiting safety concerns were identified. These findings support further development of this vaccine,” the study authors wrote.

The researchers revealed that Moderna started its phase 2 trial in May and expects to start a phase 3 trial this month.

Russia has claimed to become the first nation to complete clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccine on humans, and the results have proven the medication’s effectiveness, the media reported.

As on Wednesday morning, the overall number of global Covid-19 cases increased to more than 13.2 million, while the death toll soared to over 5,77,000, according to the Johns Hopkins University.

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Disaster

Coronavirus crisis may get ‘worse and worse and worse’, warns WHO

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Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus WHO

GENEVA : The raging coronavirus pandemic has the potential to get far worse if all nations do not adhere to basic healthcare precautions, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Monday.

“Let me be blunt, too many countries are headed in the wrong direction, the virus remains public enemy number one,” Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual briefing from WHO headquarters in Geneva.

“If basics are not followed, the only way this pandemic is going to go, it is going to get worse and worse and worse. But it does not have to be this way.”

Infections rose above 13 million across the world on Monday, according to a Reuters tally, climbing by one million in just five days in a pandemic that has killed more than half a million people.

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Cities

Doctor who managed Goa’s only Covid hospital tests positive

The state currently has more than 900 active Covid-19 cases, with 17 fatalities linked to coronavirus.

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Dr Gomes

Panaji, July 13 : Dr. Edwin Gomes, who had emerged as the face of Goa”s Covid-19 treatment and care effort, and had served as the in-charge of medication of patients at the state’s only designated Covid-19 hospital, has tested positive for the viral infection, a government spokesperson said.

“Dr. Gomes has been admitted to a state government facility for doctors infected by coronavirus,” the spokesperson said.

Gomes, 58, is also the head of medicine at the state”s only medical college, the Goa Medical College, and had last week ended his unbroken 98-day shift at the designated Covid-19 hospital.

The state currently has more than 900 active Covid-19 cases, with 17 fatalities linked to coronavirus.

Chief Minister Pramod Sawant has said that “four to five” Covid-19 patients who died, were suffering from cancer. “Eight to 10 patients were above the age of 80 years, while one also died of liver failure. The death rate has increased due to co-morbid conditions,” Sawant told reporters at the State Secretariat.

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