9 September 2020

• AstraZeneca announces that it is pausing enrollment in its phase III coronavirus vaccine trials after a study volunteer in the UK developed an adverse reaction, later identified as transverse myelitis (a rare inflammation of part of the spinal cord which can cause pain, muscle weakness, paralysis, sensory problems, and bladder and bowel dysfunction).The company is doing an independent safety review to determine whether the vaccine is linked to this adverse event. Sources 1.2
• Dr Francis Collins, Director of the NIH, speaks at a US Senate hearing, saying that a vaccine would not be given to the public unless it was proven to be safe and effective, and that it was not possible to predict when a vaccine would be available, although he was cautiously optimistic that it could happen by the end of the year. Source
• A pre-print study reports clear evidence that SARS-CoV-2 infects the brain and uses neurons to replicate while depriving nearby cells of oxygen, which the authors suggest as the cause of neurologic symptoms such as headaches, forgetfulness and confusion. Sources 1,2

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