COVID-19 Update | February 26, 2021

COVID-19 News

COVID-19 Update | Febraury 26, 2021

February 26, 2021

The California Biotechnology Foundation is committed to keeping you up to date about COVID-19 testing, treatment and prevention advancements. The following resources track what progress has been made as of February 26, 2021. Notable advancements include:

  • The US Food and Drug Administration says Johnson & Johnson’s COVID19 vaccine has met the requirements for emergency use authorization and is on track to become the 3rd vaccine available for use in the U.S.
  • Pfizer and Moderna are trying to get out ahead of some of the new COVID-19 variants and both companies said they have started looking at ways to account for evolving mutations.
  • Biotech companies like Pfizer, Sanofi, Novartis and others are joining forces to help produce COVID-19 vaccines and substantially increase vaccine supplies by this summer.

​Recent News:

  • FDA vaccine advisers recommend authorization of Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine
    CNN – February 26, 2021
    Vaccine advisers to the US Food and Drug Administration voted to recommend the agency grant emergency use authorization to Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine. The vaccine will become the third authorized for use in the United States and will be the first one-shot vaccine, and one that can be stored in regular refrigerators.
  • A third Pfizer dose? The COVID-19 vaccine maker is studying booster shots.
    NBC News – February 25, 2021
    Despite the 95 percent effectiveness at preventing COVID-19 infection after two doses of its vaccine, Pfizer is now seeing what a third dose might do. The company announced that a booster dose is being studied among people who received their first doses of the vaccine more than six months ago.
  • Moderna, Pfizer test vaccine strategies against new variants
    CNN – February 25, 2021
    Vaccine makers Pfizer and Moderna are trying to get out ahead of some of the new COVID-19 variants that are causing concern around the world. Although there’s no evidence people immunized with either vaccine have less protection against the variants, both companies said they have started looking at ways to account for evolving mutations.
  • 5 questions answered about Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine
    CNN – February 24, 2021
    The US is one step closer to having a third COVID-19 vaccine and it can’t come soon enough. With people clamoring for a shot, it was welcome news that the US Food and Drug Administration’s analysis Johnson & Johnson’s trial data showed its vaccine is safe and effective.
  • FDA says single-dose shot from J&J prevents severe COVID
    Associated Press – February 24, 2021
    Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine offers strong protection against severe COVID-19, according to an analysis released by U.S. regulators that sets the stage for a final decision on a new and easier-to-use shot to help tame the pandemic. The long-anticipated shot could offer the nation a third vaccine option and help speed vaccinations by requiring just one dose instead of two.
  • Helping People Find COVID-19 Vaccines Is Aim of C.D.C.-Backed Site
    New York Times – February 24, 2021
    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hoping to make it easier for Americans to find COVID-19 vaccines, is backing the test of a centralized online portal where the public can search for nearby vaccination locations with doses on hand. The website, called VaccineFinder, is run by Boston Children’s Hospital with the help of several collaborators.
  • To Make More Covid-19 Vaccines, Rival Drugmakers Team Up
    Wall Street Journal – February 23, 2021
    Some of the world’s biggest drugmakers are joining forces to help produce COVID-19 vaccines, forging alliances that promise to substantially increase supplies by this summer.
  • Pfizer, Moderna and J&J tout supercharged COVID-19 vaccine output, eyeing nearly 140 million new doses by March
    Fierce Pharma – February 23, 2021
    Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson execs say they’re working all the angles on increasing COVID-19 vaccine production and expect to amp up weekly deliveries by tens of millions by the end of March.  Pfizer, which has been shipping 4 million to 5 million doses per week, plans to increase that to 13 million a week by mid-March and J&J, which reportedly had just 2 million doses in stock last week, should be able to ship 20 million by March 31.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis Drug Shows Promise in Fighting COVID-19
    Wall Street Journal – February 22, 2021
    An anti-inflammatory drug can help reduce the risk of death in people hospitalized with COVID-19, a new clinical trial indicates. A U.K. study of more than 4,000 hospitalized patients showed that people who received the drug plus steroids had a 20% lower risk of death after 28 days compared with patients who received steroids and standard care only, according to preliminary results posted online this month.
  • California Will Begin Setting Aside 10% Of COVID-19 Vaccine Doses For Teachers
    NPR – February 20, 2021
    California is planning to start setting aside 10% of the COVID-19 vaccine the state receives each week to vaccinate teachers, day care workers and other school employees in the hopes of getting more students back in the classroom. “It must be done, and it must be done much sooner than the current path we are on. And we believe this will advance that cause,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said.

Rely on California Biotechnology Foundation to monitor breaking news and provide updates on the latest advancements in COVID-19 diagnostics, vaccines and treatments.

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If you have any questions about informational briefings contact California Biotechnology Foundation Executive Director Patty Cooper at (916)764-2434 or [email protected].