TWiV 685: Pandemicky

November 26, 2020

The TWiVers analyze efficacy of the AstraZeneca/Oxford adenovirus vectored vaccine, SARS-CoV-2 did not infect miners who became ill 8 years ago after cleaning bat guano from a cave in Yunnan Province, and induction of antigen-specific germinal center responses and production of neutralizing antibody by SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine but not purified protein.

Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Rich Condit, Kathy Spindler, and Brianne Barker

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Links for this episode

Weekly Picks 1:40:35

BrianneTypes of Scientists Coloring Book
KathySouth Pole video
RichSteve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
VincentScreenology (I interviewed Deb Sklut here)

Listener Pick

MonaAd5 vector and podcast with ImmunityBio founder

Intro music is by Ronald Jenkees

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10 comments on “TWiV 685: Pandemicky

  1. Brent Wakefield Nov 26, 2020

    Can you speak to distribution plan for vaccines as relates to their ability to prevent infection vs disease. For example vaccinating healthcare workers first is more helpful if it prevents them being able to transmit but may cause worse spread if they are asymptomatic. Or if it only prevents disease you may want to start with those at risk over the healthcare professionals. Are state plans for distribution taking this into consideration? Thanks for all you do!

    • Kate Murphy Nov 27, 2020

      Great show! .Please do more episodes that intersect immunology & viriology. They go hand in glove and it’s a real tip of the hat to virologists. The general public is fundamentally aware of what immunologists do. Viruses can cause acute illness as well as autoimmune syndromes. I believe that the more you can manage to educate people who are unaware of the connection really benefit from episodes such as this exemplar. Loved seeing how Rich got so excited about putting together all of the components that Briann was so effectively explaining in him (& forthe viewers.). I have a favor to ask. I’m located in Oro Valley, Az. I am aware that a friend who is refusing testing because she had initially understood that Congress protected the public by allocating funds to off set any costs associated with testing. My friend who has had an exposure is refusing to do tested because she isn’t able for find a free test site. As well, she can’t afford treatment. She’s of some means, well educated and is informed. Even so, she plans to ride it out even if she becomes ill. If and when she is going to deny known exposure. She states – ” my Insurance will then treatment”. How many folks are subject to this scenario? Lastly, I’ve be diagnosed with mast cell activation syndrome. As well, ME/FMS and UDCTD. I’d love to have the Immune gals and guys do an episode that gets down his the basics. HLAs, dendritic cells, glial cells, microglia, etcetera and then the activation of the resident mast cell (& pathway) initiators that reactivate the resident mast cells present in neuronal tissue and in the brain I’m thinking of the “Tail Phase” while asking for an episode to be done on the SARS-COIV-2 outbreak and the role of the innate immune system in general as well as specially as a possible progenitor of the post infection hyper response, in the panacea of symptoms that long haulers face. [I believe mast cells and dendritic cells play a huge role in the extended illness cohort post SARS-COIV-2 infection. Sincerely submitted. Thanks for being there for each and every one of us who depend upon you guys to get the facts and have great fun in the process. Ciao. From the majestic Sonorsn Desert. Be well and please keep safe.
      Kate M’

      • Lordy. I’ve previously posted.
        I must apologize for the errors and typos. I’m twriting to yoy, using my cell phone. I’m also in a severe flare after having dental work completed about three days ago.

  2. informed consent? Nov 27, 2020

    Randomized involuntary guinea pigs

  3. Fedora Sutton Nov 27, 2020

    This is TV, it would be wonderful if you would show the figures in the paper as you explain. I know you are concerned that there are the podcasters who can only listen, but I think you can also share your screen for those of us watching.
    This would especially helpful when the descriptions are subjective.
    Thank you very much.

  4. Dom Ingegneri Nov 28, 2020

    We have been watching the TWIV podcasts since the start of the pandemic and are very grateful for in-depth discussions and learning about the complexity of Covid 19.

    Perhaps you could create a weekly PBS medical update with Daniel Griffin, similar to the “ Shields and Brooks commentary “. The whole world should learn and will benefit from the science behind the illness.

    A question regarding B cells and Covid treatment. A woman with MS has been going for treatments whereby they destroy her B cells to reduce the severity of her illness. Would an mRNA or other vaccine type likely be ineffective because the T cells don’t have any B cells to activate against Covid?

    Hope you get an Emmy for the new category – Science- The Kind that Makes you Smart”

  5. Knut Schünemann Dec 25, 2020

    There’s something that always irks me with the discussion about mask:
    The situation in which they are used is seldom concerned.

    Some studies don’t see any reduction of infection risk, some see up to 45%; but what’s the real effect of this?

    If we think of the CDC-baseline example (15 min, 1.5 m, unmasked speaking with a definitive infectious partner), which was assumed in a former episode as 50:50 chance of getting infected; than a reduction of 50% would reduce the net infection probability from 0.5 to 0.25; that’s quite a lot, so wearing a mask would be quite advisabel.
    But what’s with wearing masks while crossing a street?
    Assuming the probability of infection is linear correlated to time of exposure and follows the r²-law with distance, and about 0.1% of the people on the street are actually infectious (in the first week of their infection), that we pass other pedestrians in 3 meter distance within less that 5 seconds, then we get a base risk of infection of no more than 0.001 * 0.25 * 0.005, thats 1.25 * 10^-6 by any person met; assuming one meets 100 people during this walk, the probability of infection is about 0.00014, aber wearing a mask with a 050% efficency reduces this risk by 0.00007; …not so much.
    Let’s now assume the person doing this risk assessment is a reasonable healthy caukasian of less than 70 years old, and as such has only about 0.1% mortality (and maybe the same again for permanent damage), we get a risk reduction by mask wearing of 0.005 in a high risk situtaion and 0.0000014 in low risk situation.
    Compared to everyday risks we take by commution, eating stuff without double checking expiration dates, cuddling pets of unknown health status, etc., how can you press the significance of mask wearing in anythig but the most risky situations and where would your own cut off point by.

    Now let’s appy the same logic to people like epileptics, asthmatics, patients with high blood pressure or known heart issues, with varying degrees of increased risk form SARS-CoV-2 and mask wearing; how does this change the risk assessment.
    What’s an asthmatic to do, who gets bronchial spasms after about a quarter of an hour of mask wearing (and about two days of lung pain afterwards), but faces agewise a estitmated mortality of 0.1%-0.2% if infected with SARS-CoV-2?

    This whole mask issue is not so straight forward and I would be delighted if somebody could point out relevant studies who include questions about contra indication and risk assesment.

    Best regards,

    Knut Schünemann

    • Knut Schünemann Dec 26, 2020

      Sorry, I miscalculated: double the distance, quarter the risk factor,
      So it should read “{…] then we get a base risk of infection of no more than 0.001 * 0.125 * 0.005, thats 0.625 * 10^-6 by any person met; assuming one meets 100 people during this walk, the probability of infection is about 0.00014, while wearing a mask with a 50% efficency reduces this risk by 0.000035 […]”

    • Knut Schünemann Dec 27, 2020

      I forgot to mention that while this argument ist kind of backwards, you can view it systematically:
      If I behave in a risk-averse way, so that I’m of average probability or less to be infections, the risk I pose to others is no greater than the risk they pose to me.