Science Newsfeed

January

22

,

5:38 pm

Source:

A preliminary study out of the UK has shown that the more-viral coronavirus strain originating there is more deadly than the most-common variant

UK PM Boris Johnson said that an initial conclusion suggested it was 30-40% more fatal

The good news is that another study from this week suggested that the Pfizer vaccine will remain as effective against this mutation as the standard variant

The data showing a higher death rate is highly uncertain, and further research needs to be done before reaching a definitive conclusion

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January

22

,

2:14 am

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Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers among men and the test used to diagnose it has about a ~30% accuracy rate

Korean researchers claim they have developed an AI diagnostic system that merely requires a urine sample to diagnose prostate cancer with 100% accuracy

The test uses AI to gauge multiple cancer factors simultaneously and generates almost instantaneous results

The researchers published their findings in a top international journal "ACS Nano"

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January

22

,

12:36 am

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Washington, DC released one of the country's most wide-reaching vaccine eligibility protocols

Under them, the majority of the District is eligible to receive a vaccine, including those who are overweight but not obese. A 6'0" man weighing 185 pounds would qualify

Also eligible is anyone who smokes. The health conditions will be asked about on a sign-up survey, and subject to the honor code

Some health experts are skeptical. Already, the District has failed to distribute enough vaccines, with internet sign-ups and phone lines periodically crashing

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January

20

,

11:18 pm

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A study by vaccine producers BioNTech and Pfizer showed that, in preliminary results, the vaccine works against the highly-contagious UK coronavirus mutation

The study looked at 16 people who had received the vaccine and were exposed to the mutated variant

In all 16 subjects, vaccine-induced antibodies neutralized the virus. The companies said there was no difference in how the mutated virus survived compared to the original

Moderna and AstraZeneca have both said they believe their vaccines will be effective, too. The new question is how vaccines will work against the South African variant

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January

18

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1:06 am

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Dr. Fauci believes that the Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca vaccines may be headed for FDA review this week, or within weeks

“I would imagine within a period of a week or so, or at the most, a couple of weeks" the companies will be presenting data to the FDA, he said

Both shows are effective after a single dose and easier to distribute than existing vaccines

The J&J vaccine appears about 95% effective, while the AstraZeneca one appears between 71% and 95% effective, depending on various factors

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January

15

,

5:29 pm

Source:

23 Norwegian seniors died after receiving the first dose of the Pfizer Covid vaccine

All were over age 80, and 13 were nursing home patients

A government official said, “We are not alarmed by this,” because "it is quite clear that these vaccines have very little risk, with a small exception for the frailest patients”

400 Norwegian nursing home residents die on an average week, so it's possible these people would have died anyways

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January

14

,

11:25 pm

Source:

UK scientists released a study showing that most people have Covid immunity for at least 5 months after infection

The study found 44 reinfections by November out of 6,614 people who had antibodies in June, implying an 83% protection rate

An expert said this suggests that getting sick leads to similar Covid protection as receiving the vaccine

For people who have already come down with Covid, experts believe the vaccine provides additional protection

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January

14

,

2:14 am

Source:

Thanks to the global pandemic, carbon emissions plummeted by a record margin in 2020

Ocean temperatures, however, continued their upward trajectory and recorded their warmest-ever year

One of the researchers explained the link between ocean temp and global warming: "Over 90% of the excess heat due to global warming is absorbed by the oceans"

One consequence of warmer oceans is more severe rainfall and vicious weather swings

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January

13

,

6:22 pm

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Dr. Paul Offit, a prominent public health expert, thinks the US may see herd immunity by June

Most promising are 2 likely soon-to-be-approved vaccine candidates by Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca. Each is easy to distribute and requires only 1 shot

Beyond this, Dr. Offit estimates that up to 70M Americans have contracted the virus to date, about triple the recorded number

The US set a single-day death record this week, with 4,300 recorded deaths on Tuesday

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January

12

,

11:42 pm

Source:

The Trump Administration has ordered a shift in how Covid vaccines are distributed to deal with bottlenecks in distribution

They are releasing a second batch of shots formerly reserved as boosters, and ordering that all people 65 and up be allowed to receive vaccines

Beginning at the end of January, states will receive vaccines based on their pace of vaccination and 65+ population

Until now, shots have been reserved for health care workers, the elderly, and those with significant pre-existing conditions

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January

12

,

11:11 pm

Source:

A freedom of information request has prompted the CIA to declassify and release thousands of UFO-related documents

The Covid relief bill requires the CIA to brief Congress on UFOs in the coming months

Famed journalist Glenn Greenwald was the one who secured the documents' release. He said he'd been asking the CIA for documents since he was a teenager

It's not yet clear what is in the documents, which are difficult to parse. Information is expected to emerge in the coming weeks

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January

8

,

5:18 pm

Source:

The White House Covid task force believe there may be an extra-transmissible coronavirus mutation that originated in the US

Scientists are still confirming, but they believe it could be 50% more transmissible than the most common strain

This comes amid concerns about the highly-transmissible UK and South African Covid variants

Thursday was the deadliest day yet for Covid in the US, with the country recording over 4k daily deaths

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January

22

,

5:48 pm

Source:

Texas has sued the Biden Administration just 2 days after it took over the White House

The Administration put a 100-day pause on most deportations, halting policies put in place by the Trump Administration

In Trump's final days in office, the Department of Homeland Security agreed to give states 6 months notice before changing federal immigration policy

This is likely to be the first of many clashes between Republican states and the Biden administration over immigratino policy

January

22

,

5:44 pm

Source:

United Airlines' CEO has said that he wants to require all the company's employees to get vaccinated

“Because I have confidence in the safety of the vaccine—and I recognize it’s controversial—I think the right thing to do is for United Airlines, and for other companies, to require the vaccines and to make them mandatory,” he said

American Airlines has said that they do not plan to require their employees to get vaccinated

Some other companies have offered incentives for employees who get vaccinated, including cash bonuses

January

22

,

5:41 pm

Source:

Of the about 26,000 National Guard troops deployed to DC for the inauguration, at least 200 have since tested positive for Covid

The Guardsmen were often living and working in close quarters during their days in the nation's capital

Several days ago, there were criticisms after it emerged that troops were forced to take breaks and sleep in parking garages, instead of indoor areas

7,000 Guardsmen are remaining in DC until the end of January, in the event of any further unrest

January

22

,

5:35 pm

Source:

Hank Aaron, one of baseball's greats and a civil rights leader, died on Friday at age 86

Aaron broke Babe Ruth's home run records and held that record for decades. He was black, and subject to frequent death threats and verbal attacks

Muhammad Ali famously called Aaron “the only man I idolize more than myself,” and he is considered to be a civil rights and sports icon for generations of Americans

Aaron has records of 2,297 RBIs, 6,856 total bases, and 1,477 extra-base hits. He spent most of his career on the Braves

January

22

,

5:31 pm

Source:

Speaker Pelosi said she would send the articles of impeachment to the Senate on Monday, kicking off Trump's second impeachment hearing

“It will be a full trial, it will be a fair trial,” said the new Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

Now-Senate Minority Leader McConnell had asked that they wait until Jan 28, in order to give Trump time to prepare and time for the Senate to conduct hearings for Biden's appointees

“The sequel cannot be an insufficient Senate process that denies former President Trump due process or damages the Senate or the presidency itself,” McConnell said

January

22

,

5:28 pm

Source:

A Boston attorney who made it on People Magazine's 2001 top-bachelor list has been accused of rape by 2 women

The man allegedly raped a woman earlier this month while out on bail for another 2016 rape charge

This time, he is being held in custody

Also on the Top 50 Bachelors list he appeared on were superstars, including Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Benicio del Toro

January

22

,

5:24 pm

Source:

A mother in Australia was confused after consistently finding this left out of place in her home

Her security system was disabled, chicken nuggets left out, and more

Upon closer inspection and after calling the police, she discovered a secret hatch that had been used for someone to sneak into the attic

She told an Australian paper she felt she had failed to protect her kids, and asked, “What has this person been doing in my house when I’m not home?"

January

22

,

5:21 pm

Source:

Ayatollah Khameinei's twitter and website shared an image that implied a threat to kill President Trump

The picture showed a bomber jet flying over Trump, golfing on the ground below

"Soleimani's murderer and he who ordered it will have to pay," it said, in reference to the Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, killed in a US drone strike last year

Twitter banned the original account after 17 hours, but was criticized for allowing this tweet just weeks after it banned President Trump

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