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Round-up: COVID-19 July 2021 (Part One)

We have got you covered with all of the latest news and research surrounding the novel coronavirus pandemic from the past fortnight.


At the time of writing, there have been:

  • 186,358,051 cases
  • 4,026,907 deaths
  • 170,496,832 recoveries


  • An international collaboration has uncovered several genetic markers associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection and disease severity. (COVID-19 Host Genetics Initiative, 2021)
  • A new study has found that SARS-CoV-2 mRNA-based vaccination of humans can produce germinal centres which enable individuals to form strong and long-lasting immunity. (Turner et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have identified how multiple mutations on the spike protein can independently create variants that are more transmissible and potentially resistant to antibodies. (Gobeil et al, 2021)
  • According to a recent study, COVID-19 vaccination can reduce severity, length and viral load for those who still get infected with the virus. (Thompson et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have compared immune responses following vaccination between elderly participants and younger healthcare workers. (Collier et al, 2021)
  • A preprint article has reported that COVID-19 vaccines are able to dampen genomic diversity of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. (Niesen et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have designed a new COVID-19 therapy that uses a defective version of the virus to drive the disease-causing version to extinction. (Yao et al, 2021)
  • A new study has addressed the potential interrelations between activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID) and so-called APOBEC proteins and the SARS-CoV-2 virus. (Meshcheryakova et al, 2021)
  • Researchers have identified that SARS-CoV-2-encoded miRNA can be used as a biomarker for stratification of severely affected patients. (Fu et al, 2021)
  • New data has shown that the Epsilon variant is able to dampen neutralising potency of antibodies and thus evade the immune response. (McCallum et al, 2021)
  • Scientists have revealed that those infected by early variants in 2020 produced sustained antibodies. However, these antibodies are not effective against contemporary variants. (Tea et al, 2021)

Other news

  • A phase 3 clinical trial has found that the Novavax vaccine conferred 89.7% protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection. It also showed high efficacy against the B.1.1.7 variant. (Heath et al, 2021)
  • A recent Science article has explored the existing evidence surrounding the impact of sex on the severity of COVID-19 infection. (O’Grady, 2021)

Image credit: By starline – freepik

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Coronavirus / covid-19 / Variants