October 20, 2022

VSS Scientific Updates During Pandemic Times #42

1.    The Next U.S. COVID Wave is Coming.Why it Will be 'much weirder than before.'

Experts call this “convergent evolution” — and right now, there’s a “fairly unprecedented amount” of it going on, according to Tom Peacock, a virologist at Imperial College London.

“Although stuff started off in different places — someBA.2, some BA.5 — everything’s going back in the same direction,” Peacock recently told Stat. “They’re getting the same mutations, which implies there’s a very strong selective pressure in the environment right now, which of course is people’s immunity.”

2.    Virological Characteristics of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.2.75 Variant

“Antiviral drugs largely retained potency but antibody sensitivity varied depending on several key BA.2.75-specific substitutions. TheBA.2.75 spike exhibited a profoundly higher affinity for its human receptor,ACE2. Additionally, the fusogenicity, growth efficiency in human alveolar epithelial cells, and intrinsic pathogenicity in hamsters of BA.2.75 were greater than those of BA.2. Our multilevel investigations suggest that BA.2.75acquired virological properties independent of BA.5, and the potential risk ofBA.2.75 to global health is greater than that of BA.5.”

3.    With Fall Migration, Bird Flu Flies Back into Town

But by all other measures, this year’s outbreak is “radically different than what we’ve seen before,” said Bryan Richards, the emerging disease coordinator at the National Wildlife Health Center, which is part of the U.S. GeologicalSurvey.

4.    Posts Mislead on Pfizer COVID Vaccine’s Impact on Transmission

“WhileRoos and many others framed this as a new revelation, Pfizer never claimed that its clinical trial, upon which the vaccine was authorized for use, evaluated the shot’s effect on transmission. In fact, shortly before the vaccine’s release, the company’s CEO emphasized that this was still being evaluated.”

5.    The Real Anthony Fauci: The Movie

“Within the first 5 minutes, you know why Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s blockbuster bestelling book  The Real Anthony Fauci is now a full-length feature documentary exposing Big Pharma, Big Tech and Big Government.”

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Geert Vanden Bossche received his DVM from the University of Ghent, Belgium, and his PhD degree in Virology from the University of Hohenheim, Germany. He held adjunct faculty appointments at universities in Belgium and Germany. After his career in Academia, Geert joined several vaccine companies (GSK Biologicals, Novartis Vaccines, Solvay Biologicals) to serve various roles in vaccine R&D as well as in late vaccine development.

Geert then moved on to join the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Health Discovery team in Seattle (USA) as Senior Program Officer; he then worked with the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) in Geneva as Senior Ebola Program Manager. At GAVI he tracked efforts to develop an Ebola vaccine. He also represented GAVI in fora with other partners, including WHO, to review progress on the fight against Ebola and to build plans for global pandemic preparedness.

Back in 2015, Geert scrutinized and questioned the safety of the Ebola vaccine that was used in ring vaccination trials conducted by WHO in Guinea. His critical scientific analysis and report on the data published by WHO in the Lancet in 2015 was sent to all international health and regulatory authorities involved in the Ebola vaccination program. After working for GAVI, Geert joined the German Center for Infection Research in Cologne as Head of the Vaccine Development Office. He is at present primarily serving as a Biotech / Vaccine consultant while also conducting his own research on Natural Killer cell-based vaccines.


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