Tag Archives: Coronapod

Covid-19 Podcast: What Are Vaccine Side Effects?

From a sore arm to anaphylaxis, a wide range of adverse events have been reported after people have received a COVID-19 vaccine. And yet it is unclear how many of these events are actually caused by the vaccine. In the vast majority of cases, reactions are mild and can be explained by the body’s own immune response.

But monitoring systems designed to track adverse events are catching much rarer but more serious events. Now scientists need to work out if they are causally liked to the vaccine, or are just statistical anomalies – and that is not an easy task.News: Why is it so hard to investigate the rare side effects of COVID vaccines?Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

Covid-19: Understanding The New Variants & New Vaccines Effectiveness

Researchers are scrambling to understand the biology of new coronavirus variants and the impact they might have on vaccine efficacy.

Around the world, concern is growing about the impact that new, faster-spreading variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus will have on the pandemic.

In this episode of Coronapod, we discuss what these variants are, and the best way to respond to them, in the face of increasing evidence that some can evade the immunity produced by vaccination or previous infection.

News: ‘A bloody mess’: Confusion reigns over naming of new COVID variants

News: Fast-spreading COVID variant can elude immune responses

News: Could new COVID variants undermine vaccines? Labs scramble to find out

News: How to redesign COVID vaccines so they protect against variants

News: J&J’s one-shot COVID vaccine offers hope for faster protection

Covid-19: ‘The Rise Of The RNA Vaccines’ (Podcast)

Benjamin Thompson, Noah Baker and Elie Dolgin discuss RNA vaccines.

In this episode:

01:16 How RNA vaccines came to prominence

In less than a year, two RNA vaccines against COVID-19 were designed, tested and rolled out across the world. We discuss these vaccines’ pros and cons, how RNA technology lends itself to rapid vaccine development, and what this means for the fight against other diseases.

News feature: How COVID unlocked the power of RNA vaccines

09:20 The hurdles for trialling new COVID-19 vaccines

Multiple candidates for new COVID-19 vaccines are still being developed, which may offer advantages over the vaccines currently available. However, running placebo-controlled trials of these candidates is becoming increasingly difficult, so researchers are looking for different ways to evaluate them.

News: Search for better COVID vaccines confounded by existing rollouts

14:45 How long will COVID vaccines be effective?

There is much concern around the world about two faster-spreading variants of SARS-CoV-2. We get an update on whether these variants could render vaccines ineffective.

News: Could new COVID variants undermine vaccines? Labs scramble to find out

Science: CNO Neutrinos At The Sun’s Core, Covid-19 & Contraception (Podcast)

Scientists have finally confirmed the existence of a CNO cycle fusion reaction in the Sun, and why women’s contraception research needs a reboot.

In this episode:

00:47 Detection of CNO neutrinos

Since the 1930s it has been theorised that stars have a specific fusion reaction known as the CNO cycle, but proof has been elusive. Now, a collaboration in Italy report detection of neutrinos that show that the CNO cycle exists.

Research article: The Borexino Collaboration

News and Views: Neutrino detection gets to the core of the Sun

08:48 Coronapod

We discuss the search for the animal origin of SARS-CoV-2, with researchers raiding their freezer draws to see if any animals carry similar viruses, and the latest vaccine results.

News: Coronaviruses closely related to the pandemic virus discovered in Japan and Cambodia

News: Why Oxford’s positive COVID vaccine results are puzzling scientists

19:32 Research Highlights

How sleep patterns relate to ageing, and a solar-powered steam sterilizer.

Research Highlight: For better health, don’t sleep your age

Research Highlight: Technology for sterilizing medical instruments goes solar

21:50 Getting women’s contraception research unstuck

Since the 1960s there has been little progress on research into women’s contraceptives. This week in Nature, researchers argue that this needs to change.

Comment: Reboot contraceptives research — it has been stuck for decades

29:35 Briefing Chat

We discuss a highlight from the Nature Briefing. This time, a tool to summarise papers.

Nature News: tl;dr: this AI sums up research papers in a sentence

Covid-19 Podcast: Death Rates Are Falling – What This Means For Pandemic

The COVID-19 mortality rate is falling around the world. We discuss the reasons behind this – the role of new drugs, the treatment strategies the have been learned, or re-learned, and the ever-present worry that these hard won victories could be undone by rising infection rates.

In this episode:

00:44 An increase in survival rates

The COVID-19 mortality rate is falling around the world. We discuss the reasons behind this – the role of new drugs, the treatment strategies the have been learned, or re-learned, and the ever-present worry that these hard won victories could be undone by rising infection rates.

News Feature: Why do COVID death rates seem to be falling?

10:53 More vaccine good news

This week, Moderna released preliminary results for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, the third positive indication from a string of vaccine announcements. Although the full data are yet to be published, do these results give us more reasons to feel hopeful?

News: COVID vaccine excitement builds as Moderna reports third positive result

Covid-19 Update Podcast: Researchers Simulate New Outbreaks “Military-Style”

coronapod-reportResearchers have run numerous military-style simulations to predict the consequences of fictitious viral outbreaks. We discuss how these simulations work, what recommendations come out of them and if any of these warnings have been heeded.

24:08 One good thing

Our hosts pick out things that have made them smile in the last week, including audience feedback, the official end of the Ebola outbreak in the northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, and an enormous t-shirt collection.

News: World’s second-deadliest Ebola outbreak ends in Democratic Republic of the Congo

28:50 The latest coronavirus research papers

Benjamin Thompson takes a look through some of the key coronavirus papers of the last few weeks.

Coronavirus Update: State Of The Pandemic After Six Months (Nature Podcast)

Coronapod ReportWe take a look back over the past six months of the pandemic, and discuss how far the world has come. It’s been a period of turmoil and science has faced an unprecedented challenge. What lessons can be learned from the epidemic so far to continue the fight in the months to come?

Also in this episode:

12:55 Unanswered questions

After months of intensive research, much is known about the new coronavirus – but many important questions remain unanswered. We look at the knowledge gaps researchers are trying to fill.

Nature Medicine: Real-time tracking of self-reported symptoms to predict potential COVID-19

20:36 How has lockdown affected fieldwork?

The inability to travel during lockdown has seriously hampered many researchers’ ability to gather fieldwork data. We hear from three whose work has been affected, and what this means for their projects.

Coronavirus: “Confusing Hydroxychloroquine Studies” (Nature Podcast)

Coronapod ReportPresident Trump’s preferred coronavirus treatment is the focus of a new study suggesting it could cause more harm than good, but not everybody agrees. We discuss the fallout as trials around the world are paused and countries diverge over policy advice.

12:12 Are we rushing science?

Coronavirus papers are being published extremely quickly, while normally healthy scientific debate is being blown up in the world’s press. Is there a balancing act between timely research and accurate messaging?

18:49 One good thing

Our hosts pick out things that have made them smile in the last week, including hedgerow brews and a trip into the past using AI.

Recipe: Elderflower ‘Champagne’

Video: Denis Shiryaev restores historic footage with AI

22:30 The latest coronavirus research papers

Noah Baker takes a look through some of the key coronavirus papers of the last few weeks.

News: Coronavirus research updates

medRxiv: Full genome viral sequences inform patterns of SARS-CoV-2 spread into and within Israel

Harvard Library: Reductions in commuting mobility predict geographic differences in SARS-CoV-2 prevalence in New York City

Science: DNA vaccine protection against SARS-CoV-2 in rhesus macaques

Top Health Podcasts: Dubious Coronavirus Content, Funding Fears

Coronapod ReportWith questionable coronavirus content flooding airwaves and online channels, what’s being done to limit its impact?

In this episode:

00:57 The epidemiology of misinformation

As the pandemic spreads, so does a tidal wave of misinformation and conspiracy theories. We discuss how researchers’ are tracking the spread of questionable content, and ways to limit its impact.

News: Anti-vaccine movement could undermine efforts to end coronavirus pandemic, researchers warn

Nature Video: Infodemic: Coronavirus and the fake news pandemic

 

17:55 One good thing

Our hosts pick out things that have made them smile in the last week, including walks in new places, an update on the Isolation Choir, and a very long music playlist.

Video: The Isolation Choir sing What a Wonderful World

Spotify: Beastie Boys Book Complete Songs

22:30 Funding fears for researchers

Scientists around the world are concerned about the impacts that the pandemic will have on their funding and research projects. We hear from two who face uncertainty, and get an update on the plans put in place by funding organisations to support their researchers.

Coronavirus: Race To Expand Antibody Testing And Investing In Public Health (Nature Podcast)

Coronapod ReportBenjamin Thompson, Noah Baker, and Amy Maxmen discuss the role of antibody tests in controlling the pandemic, and how public-health spending could curtail an economic crisis. Also on the show, the open hardware community’s efforts to produce medical equipment.

In this episode:

02:08 Betting on antibodies

Antibody tests could play a key role in understanding how the virus has spread through populations, and in ending lockdowns. We discuss concerns over their reliability, how they could be used, and the tantalising possibility of immunity.

News: The researchers taking a gamble with antibody tests for coronavirus

10:25 Economy vs public health, a false dichotomy

Jim Yong Kim, former president of the World Bank, argues that strong investment in public health is crucial to halt the ongoing pandemic and to prevent a global financial crisis. We discuss his work with US governors to massively increase contact tracing, and his thoughts on how researchers can help steer political thinking.

News Q&A: Why the World Bank ex-chief is on a mission to end coronavirus transmission

19:00 One good thing this week

Our hosts talk about staying positive, and pick a few things that have made them smile in the last 7 days, including a tiny addition to the team, a newspaper produced by children in lockdown, and a gardening update.

Six Feet of Separation, the newspaper staffed by kids

22:51 Open hardware

Researchers are stepping up efforts to design and produce ventilators and personal protective equipment for frontline medical staff. We hear how the open hardware movement is aiding these efforts, and the regulations that teams need to consider if their designs are to make it into use.