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Daily Archives: December 21, 2021

US Army Creates Single Vaccine Effective Against All COVID & SARS Variants, Researchers Say

Defense One – “Within weeks, scientists at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research expect to announce that they have developed a vaccine that is effective against COVID-19 and all its variants, even Omicron, as well as from previous SARS-origin viruses that have killed millions of people worldwide.  The achievement is the result of almost two years of work on the virus. The Army lab received its first DNA sequencing of the COVID-19 virus in early 2020. Very early on, Walter Reed’s infectious diseases branch decided to focus on making a vaccine that would work against not just the existing strain but all of its potential variants as well. Walter Reed’s Spike Ferritin Nanoparticle COVID-19 vaccine, or SpFN, completed animal trials earlier this year with positive results. Phase 1 of human trials, which tested the vaccine against Omicron and the other variants, wrapped up this month, again with positive results that are undergoing final review, Dr. Kayvon Modjarrad, director of Walter Reed’s infectious diseases branch, said in an exclusive interview with Defense One.  Unlike existing vaccines, Walter Reed’s SpFN uses a soccer ball-shaped protein with 24 faces for its vaccine, which allows scientists to attach the spikes of multiple coronavirus strains on different faces of the protein…”

This Scientist Created a Rapid Test Just Weeks Into the Pandemic

ProPublica: “Here’s Why You Still Can’t Get It. Irene Bosch developed a quick, inexpensive COVID-19 test in early 2020. When COVID-19 started sweeping across America in the spring of 2020, Irene Bosch knew she was in a unique position to help. The Harvard-trained scientist had just developed quick, inexpensive tests for several tropical diseases, and… Continue Reading

Omicron at Least Doubles Risk of Getting Infected on a Plane

Bloomberg: “Aircraft passengers are twice or even three times more likely to catch Covid-19 during a flight since the emergence of the omicron variant, according to the top medical adviser to the world’s airlines.  The warning comes as travelers take to the skies in their thousands for year-end holidays and family reunions, and as omicron… Continue Reading

Nature’s 10 Ten people who helped shape science in 2021

“An Omicron investigator, a Mars explorer and an AI ethics pioneer are some of the people behind the year’s big research stories. The Nature’s 10 list explores key developments in science this year and some of the people who played important parts in these milestones. Along with their colleagues, these individuals helped to make amazing… Continue Reading

HE 2021 Northern Lights photographer of the year

Capture the Atlas: “The 2021 Northern Lights photographer of the year. Photographing the Northern Lights is an otherworldly experience.There aren’t many events as moving as seeing the aurora borealis dance and illuminate the night sky with mesmerizing movements and vibrant colors. To help you find inspiration for planning and executing your images, in this new… Continue Reading

The Best Books of 2021 – Jason Kottke: “Like last year, I had a lot of trouble reading this year and even more difficulty regularly visiting good book stores, with months-long stretches without both. So, I went into compiling this post with a (fairly) clean slate and it was exciting to learn about what’s been good this year. I… Continue Reading

Iraqi museum restores treasures destroyed by ISIS

MENA – “France’s famous Louvre is supporting Iraqi museum employees. Iraq’s once-celebrated Mosul museum and its 2,500-year-old treasures – left in ruins by extremists – are being given a second chance thanks to restoration efforts backed by French experts. Iraq’s once-celebrated Mosul museum and its 2,500-year-old treasures – left in ruins by extremists – are… Continue Reading

The World’s Most Profitable Traffic Jam

“Welcome to BIG, a newsletter about the politics of monopoly. If you’d like to sign up, you can do so here. Or just read on…Today’s issue is on an unusual type of story – it’s about how politics can work to fix a major social problem. Ten days ago, the House of Representatives passed a bill… Continue Reading

Missing and Murdered Indigenous People

“According to the @TheJusticeDept, American Indian and Alaska Native women are missing and murdered at a rate of more than 10x the national average. A new @BureauIndAffrs website has launched to address this crisis that is devastating Tribal communities. The Missing and Murdered Unit within the Office of Justice Services focuses on analyzing and… Continue Reading