Coronavirus World Update, May 19: WHO approves virus origin probe, China seals Shulan, Moderna vaccine shows promise
A resolution asking for an independent investigation into the origins of the coronavirus disease has been passed unanimously by the WHO today.
As of today, 4.9 million people have been reported to be COVID-19 positive in the world. Out of these, over 1.9 million people have already recovered and over 320,000 have passed away.
A resolution asking for an independent investigation into the origins of the coronavirus disease has been passed unanimously by the World Health Organization today.
China seals Shulan, Singapore apologises to citizens for false test results
China has reportedly implemented a strict lockdown (similar to that of Wuhan) in Shulan, a city in the north Jilin province. Last week a cluster of cases emerged in the city that was linked to a woman who had no travel history. The area was reportedly put in the high-risk area category then. Under the lockdown, only one person from each house will be allowed to go out for groceries or shopping.
Meanwhile, the Singapore government has reportedly apologised to about 357 COVID-19 patients who mistakenly had got a message telling them that have tested positive for the disease again after having recovered of it once. As per media reports, the health ministry announced on Monday that the message was sent due to a glitch in their IT system and that they were sorry for any anxiety that it may have caused.
Spain allows flights from Italy, Japan to ease restrictions in more parts
After a significant reduction in the per day death toll, Spain has reportedly opened flights between their country and Italy on Tuesday. However, any person coming into the country will still have to undergo a 14-day quarantine and tourism restrictions are still in place. The Spanish Parliament will discuss on Tuesday about a possible extension of the ‘state of emergency’ till June 27.
As per media reports, Japan may lift the state of emergency from Osaka, Hyogo and Kyoto this week, bringing the total number of areas with restrictions down to five. The decision reportedly came out after the new cases dropped further. Last week, the country had lifted restrictions from 39 out of the 47 prefectures, leaving the remaining eight under strict curbs.
Moderna vaccine shows promise in human trials
The COVID-19 vaccine candidate being developed at the Moderna Inc, USA has reportedly shown positive preliminary results in the phase 1 safety trials.
The study began in March and enrollment is still ongoing. Initial results from eight subjects have shown that the vaccine develops antibodies against the COVID-19 causing virus on being injected in healthy people.
The Moderna vaccine mRNA-1273 is a novel lipid nanoparticle (LNP)-encapsulated mRNA-based vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent of COVID-19 . The vaccine contains mRNA stretch of SARS-CoV-2 that codes for the perfusion spike protein of the virus. As per the World Health Organisation draft landscape for COVID-19 vaccine candidates, it is one of the eight COVID-19 vaccine candidates currently under clinical evaluation.
For more information, read our article on COVID-19 vaccines: Potential targets and types of vaccines.
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