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Children with mild COVID-19 may not develop antibodies; oral vaccine booster shows promise in monkey study

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The following is a summary of some recent studies on COVID-19. They include research that warrants further study to corroborate the findings and that have yet to be certified by peer review.

Children with mild COVID-19 may lack  antibodies afterward

Children who contract a mild case of COVID-19 may not develop antibodies to the virus afterward, a study from Australia suggests. Researchers compared 57 children and 51 adults with mild COVID-19 or asymptomatic infections. Only 37% of children appeared to develop antibodies, compared to 76% of adults – even though viral loads were similar in the two groups, researchers found. Children’s bodies also did not appear to produce second-line cellular immune responses to the virus in the same way as adults, said study leader Paul Licciardi of Murdoch Children’s Research Institute in Melbourne. The participants in the study were all infected in 2020, his team reported on Monday on medRxiv https://bit.ly/2XuernM ahead of peer review. “Whether this also happens for the current circulating variant (Delta) requires further investigation, as well as studies to understand why children are less likely to produce antibody responses following SARS-CoV-2 Infection,” Licciardi said. “Whether this means children are susceptible to re-infection is not known.”

Experimental oral COVID-19 vaccine shows promise in monkeys

A COVID-19 booster vaccine that can be given by mouth to people who already have antibodies from vaccination or prior infection has yielded promising results in monkeys and is likely to be tested soon in humans, according to the company developing it. The oral booster uses traditional vaccine technology in which a harmless carrier virus delivers coronavirus proteins into cells on the surface of the tongue, or lining of the cheeks and throat, stimulating production of antibodies that can block the virus before it gets a foothold in the body, said Dr. Stephen Russell, chief executive of Vyriad in Rochester, Minnesota, who led the study. “Not only would an oral COVID-19 vaccine be more convenient and acceptable… but it might also lead to better immunity because it is being administered to the site where the COVID-19 virus typically comes into the body,” he added. In monkeys at one week after vaccinations, antibody levels increased by nearly 100-fold, with no side effects, Russell said. A report of the study posted on Monday on bioRxiv https://bit.ly/3vwny3T ahead of peer review says Vyriad is working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to plan human trials.

Plants may be useful in vaccine production

Plants could someday be used to produce COVID-19 vaccines, according to researchers who are developing a nasal spray vaccine. Vaccines work by delivering antigens, which are replicas of pieces of virus or bacteria that train the immune system to recognize the invader and defend against it. Vaccine antigens are typically produced in cells from mammals, but previous studies have suggested that producing them in tobacco-related Nicotiana benthamiana plants would be less expensive and safer. In the current lab study, posted on Monday on bioRxiv https://bit.ly/3AZwFv2 ahead of peer review, COVID-19 survivors’ antibodies recognized and responded to the coronavirus antigen produced in the plants “in the same way that they recognize a standard antigen produced in mammalian cells,” said study leader Allyson MacLean of the University of Ottawa. The intra-nasal vaccine is not meant to replace conventional (injected) vaccines, but rather to add another layer of protection by stimulating immune system protection in the airways, where the virus first attaches itself,” MacLean said. “We imagine the nasal-spray being used to top-up immune protection when traveling or going to events with large numbers of people.”

Click for a Reuters graphic https://tmsnrt.rs/3c7R3Bl on vaccines in development.

 

(Reporting by Nancy Lapid; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

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Tougher COVID-19 measures in Sudbury/Manitoulin districts – My Eespanola Now

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The Medical Officer of Health for Public Health Sudbury & Districts is reinstating work-from-home requirements.

Dr Penny Sutcliffe also says strong recommendations for COVID-19 protections are being issued to area schools, businesses, and organizations and stricter measures for the follow-up of contacts of cases of COVID-19 are being enacted.

Public Health is reissuing its call to everyone to continue to limit outings, work from home, get vaccinated, wear a mask and keep two metres distance from those outside your household.

They say continued high COVID19 rates mean that the Public Health Sudbury & Districts area is among the top three most affected jurisdictions in Ontario.

As of Friday, the agency had 288 active cases with Health Sciences North reporting 38 admitted patients with seven in intensive care.

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First children's vaccination clinic in Chatham fully booked – BlackburnNews.com

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First children’s vaccination clinic in Chatham fully booked

10-year-old Lucy Gillette from Chatham was the first to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at the Bradley Centre Clinic in Chatham on Saturday, November 27, 2021. (Photo courtesy of CKPHU)

Lucy Gillette, age 10, Chatham


Hundreds of Band-Aids were plastered onto the little arms of kids in Chatham-Kent who rolled up their sleeves for their first COVID-19 vaccine.

Chatham-Kent Public Health Unit (CKPHU) says 550 doses were administered to children aged five to 11 on Saturday for the first day of the municipality’s pediatric vaccination campaign.

“Things went really well and there has been a lot of excitement,” said Jeff Moco with Chatham-Kent Public Health Communications. “People seem to be excited to start this next phase of the vaccination campaign.”

Appointments for Pfizer-BioNTech’s pediatric vaccine at the Bradley Centre in Chatham opened on Tuesday, November 23.

The clinic has been transformed into a youth-friendly vaccination clinic with a “Super-Kid” theme that includes bright colours, balloons, and costumes.

“It has a different vibe, we have the balloons and the superhero theme,” said Moco. “It’s a lot of fun and lighthearted.”

The vaccination clinic at the Bradley Centre will run Tuesday to Saturday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Moco said another clinic has been added this Monday, which has a lot of spaces still available.

There are also three vaccine clinics planned at schools beginning next month.

The school clinics will be at Blenheim District Secondary School on December 6, 2021, Wallaceburg District Secondary School on December 13, and Tilbury District Secondary School on December 20.

All school clinics run from 3 p.m. until 8 p.m. and everyone is welcome to get the shot at those clinics.

“I don’t think any kid likes getting a vaccination but what we have been hearing is that they see other people in their lives get vaccinated and feel left out,” said Moco. “Some of them have been interested in doing their part and it’s kind of neat seeing that mindset in young people.”

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Kids COVID vaccine campaign ramps up in the capital amid concerns over new variant – CTV Edmonton

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OTTAWA —
Ottawa’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign for children ramped up on Saturday as thousands of kids between 5 and 11-years-old rolled up their sleeves for their first shot.

All seven of Ottawa’s community vaccination clinics are now offering paediatric doses this weekend.

The push to immunize as many as possible has been amplified by concerns over a new variant emerging from southern Africa.

Ottawa’s clinics were running full speed Saturday; there were lineups outside some sites.

“A lot of relief that we’re finally able to get the shots in the kiddos and excited about the next one,” said Toufic Zayoun, after their kids received the first shot.

More than 1,400 doses were administered Friday to kids between 5 and 11 in the capital. As of Friday afternoon, Ottawa Public Health said nearly 5,000 appointments had been booked for the first weekend.

This comes though as concerns of a new COVID variant emerge. The Omicron variant, first detected in southern Africa, appears to be more transmissible.

“I think it’s too early to panic,” said Dr. Kwadwo Kyeremanteng, an Ottawa critical care physician.

“We haven’t had any solid data to show it could evade the vaccine, it’s hard to gauge how it would respond in our setting where we have extremely good vaccination rates.”

For now, Dr. Kyeremanteng is pushing for continued caution and encourages immunization.

“To me the message that’s loud and clear right now is we need to think about global vaccinations very seriously,” he said.

The new variant of concern is already on the minds of parents too.

“Any new variant that comes up is always concerning and it’s just nice to have that extra layer of protection for the kids now too,” said Christie Cowan, after her two kids got their first shot Saturday.

She’s hopeful increased immunization will mean a more normal heart ahead for kids in the capital.

“If this means schools stay open, especially after Christmas, this means everything to them,” said Cowan.

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