Tip Sheet: New COVID-19 transmission study, returning to school, video of biorepositories — and a new weight loss study

SEATTLE —  April 2, 2021 — Below are summaries of recent Fred Hutch research findings and other news. April is National Minority Health Month, with a focus on the disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 on communities of color. See more details below on related Fred Hutch programming.Save the date for our monthly public science event, “Science Says” on Tuesday, April 27.

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UCLA to lead CDC-funded study testing effectiveness of vaccines on health workers

Researchers will study vaccinated and non-vaccinated health workers who get tested for the virus after experiencing common COVID-19 symptoms like fever, cough or a loss of sense of taste or smell. They will compare the incidence of positive tests and severity of illness in those who test positive.

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New study: U.S. faces uphill struggle compared to U.K. in COVID-19 vaccination rates

Just 51% of Americans expressed a clear willingness to take the COVID-19 vaccine compared to 71% of residents in the United Kingdom, according to a new study conducted by Michigan State University’s Quello Center during the first nine months of the pandemic. “The data suggests that due to the confusion that existed in American politics, with even our leaders at the highest levels casting doubt on the pandemic, the scientific message was muddled in the U.S., whereas in the U.K. there was a unifying voice,” said Johannes Bauer, director of MSU’s Quello Center and co-principal investigator on the research.

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Mount Sinai Researchers Find that a Second Shot of COVID-19 Vaccine May Not be Necessary in Previously Infected Individuals

A single shot of one of the currently authorized COVID-19 vaccines may be sufficient to provide immunity to individuals who have previously been infected by the virus, thus eliminating the need for a second dose and helping to stretch severely limited vaccine supplies, a study from Mount Sinai has found

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LifeBridge Health Launches Mobile Van to Provide Vulnerable Communities Access to COVID-19 Testing, Senior and Pediatric Care

LifeBridge Health recently announced the launch of its “Care Happens Here” mobile unit, which will bring a wide range of healthcare testing and treatment services, including COVID-19 vaccinations, to vulnerable communities throughout central Maryland.

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Equitably Allocating COVID-19 Vaccine

Equitable implementation of COVID‐19 vaccine delivery is a national and global priority, with a strong focus on reducing existing disparities and not creating new disparities. But while a framework has been recognized for equitable allocation of COVID‐19 vaccine that acknowledges the rights and interests of sexual and gender minorities (SGM), it fails to identify strategies or data to achieve that goal.

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Tip Sheet: Diversity in vaccine clinical trials, behind-the-scenes look at COVID-19 biostats, new cell therapy approved, plus meet ‘Megasphaera hutchinsoni’

SEATTLE —  March 2, 2021 — Below are summaries of recent Fred Hutch research findings and other news with links for additional background and media contacts.March is Women’s History month. We’d like to honor Dottie Thomas, known as the “mother of bone marrow transplantation.” She spent years working as a research partner alongside her husband, Nobel Prize-winning Dr.

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Why COVID-19 vaccine distribution methods fall short and 3 ways to improve them

Several proposals have emerged on how to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine, but they fall short in ensuring that the vaccine is distributed fairly. A team including Binghamton University professor Nicole Hassoun suggests three ways to more fairly and effectively distribute the vaccine so that people in poor countries get the vaccine as soon as possible.

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Vaccine Prioritization Dashboard Launches @JohnsHopkins for People with Disabilities

A new Johns Hopkins data tool helps people with disabilities determine when they qualify for the COVID-19 vaccine and compares how different states prioritize the disability community in the vaccine rollout.

Created by researchers, students and advocates who themselves are disabled and have personally experienced how inequitable and inaccessible the pandemic response has been, the COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Dashboard launched to not only help the disability community get vaccinated, but also to arm policymakers with data to improve the system.

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Cancer Organizations Urge Priority Access to COVID-19 Vaccine for Cancer Patients, Survivors

130 cancer centers and other cancer organizations sent a letter to President Joseph R. Biden, key members of his administration, and leading state public health officials to strongly encourage prioritizing patients with cancer and survivors of cancer when administering lifesaving COVID-19 vaccines.

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It’s morally wrong for rich nations to hoard COVID-19 vaccine

Rich nations should not engage in “vaccine nationalism” and keep the COVID-19 vaccine to themselves when poorer nations need them, according to Nicole Hassoun, professor of philosophy at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

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Systemic Racism & Health Care: Building Black Confidence in the COVID-19 Vaccine

The Tuskegee syphilis experiment. The secret sale of Henrietta Lacks cancer research cells. Jim Crow laws affecting African Americans’ ability to receive medical treatment. For weeks, it’s been hard to hear over the clamor of millions of Americans lining up for COVID-19 vaccines. But not everyone has been enthused — namely, large swaths of minority communities, which comprise the populations disproportionately impacted by the virus, but whose hesitance is largely fueled by the country’s racist medical past.

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Research finds people diagnosed with HIV in New York State were more than twice as likely to die from COVID-19

New research out of the University at Albany and the AIDS Institute at the New York State Department of Health found that through the middle of 2020, people diagnosed with HIV infection were significantly more likely to contract, be hospitalized with and die from COVID-19.

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Story Tips from Johns Hopkins Experts on COVID-19

Vaccines take time to work. After getting a COVID-19 vaccine, it takes a while for the immune system to fully respond and provide protection from the virus. For the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines, it takes up to two weeks after the second shot to become appropriately protected.

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Johns Hopkins Medicine Hosts Briefing on COVID-19: One Year Later

A Woman’s Journey will host a 90-minute virtual event, “COVID-19: One Year Later,” during which Johns Hopkins Medicine experts will address important issues related to COVID-19 such as new and available treatments and vaccine safety and efficacy. Registrants will learn about the continued urgency of public health measures to mitigate the pandemic despite the introduction of vaccines, what distinguishes the leading vaccine contenders in their methodology, safety and effectiveness, and symptoms and insights surrounding lingering deficits in physical function, mental health and cognition among COVID-19 survivors.

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AACI Partners With Federal Vaccine Panel to Promote Cancer Patient Health

AACI was invited last summer to join the Vaccine Consultation Panel (VCP) alongside other leading health and science organizations in the U.S. Through the VCP, AACI has received periodic updates on the development and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and participated in efforts to educate the cancer center community and the general public on the importance of widespread vaccine uptake.

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Researchers discover new way to deliver DNA-based therapies for diseases

University of Minnesota Twin Cities researchers have created a new polymer to deliver DNA and RNA-based therapies for diseases. For the first time in the industry, the researchers were able to see exactly how polymers interact with human cells when delivering medicines into the body. This discovery opens the door for more widespread use of polymers in applications like gene therapy and vaccine development.

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Memorial Hermann First in Houston to Administer COVID-19 Vaccine to Frontline Healthcare Workers

Key Takeaways:
• Memorial Hermann is proud to be part of history in the making, as the first health systems across the country begin receiving and administering the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to their frontline healthcare workers
• Memorial Hermann’s first vaccine was given to Robert Luckey, a nurse in the COVID ICU at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center
• To date, Memorial Hermann has treated more than 12,000 COVID-19 positive patients in its hospitals, more than any other health system in the Greater Houston area
• The system expects to receive 16,575 doses of the Pfizer vaccine in the first allotment, more than any other health system in the Greater Houston area
• It’s important that everyone continues practicing the three “W’s”: wearing a mask, watching social distance and washing hands frequently

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