10 March 2021

• Eli Lilly issues a press release with data from its 769-person phase III trial of the monoclonal antibody combination of bamlanivimab (LY-CoV555) 700 mg and etesevimab (LY-CoV016) 1400 mg, reporting that it reduced hospitalizations and deaths  by 87 percent among people with mild to moderate COVID-19 who were considered high risk for severe illness. Source
• After European Medicines Agency head  Christa Wirthumer-Hoche compared moving ahead with the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine before  EMA approves it  (as in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia) was “ …somewhat comparable to Russian roulette” the vaccine’s Russian sponsors demand an apology. Source
• US President Biden plans to purchase an additional 100 million doses of the J & J coronavirus vaccine by the end of 2021 for children and in case of manufacturing glitches or if  booster doses or a new formulation that is adapted to variants become necessary. Source
• A pre-print article reports that VIR-7831 (and VIR-7832), which are monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19 co-developed by Vir and GSK, are effective against the B.1.1.7, the B.1.351 and the P.1 variants. Source
• Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia presented a budget which includes free COVID-19 vaccines at all hospitals. Source
• BioNTech’s CEO, Ugur Sahin, says that Pfizer and his company already have orders for 1.3 billion doses of their coronavirus vaccine, and could produce three billon doses in 2022, de[pending on demand and need for boosters. Source
Lancet  publishes a 4,258-person, household-based study of coronavirus prevalence in Zambia. It found that prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 was  92 times higher than what was officially reported  ( 72,467 cases  as of February 2021), due to the large proportion of people with mild or no symptoms and limited access to testing. Notably, HIV was the most common co-existing condition, among over five percent of survey respondents, with over 98 percent receiving antiretroviral therapy.  Source
• UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson denies blocking exports of coronavirus vaccines, after European Council President Charles Michel, who said that the UK   “… imposed an outright ban on the export of vaccines or vaccine components produced on their territory.” The UK has received over nine million doses of coronavirus vaccine from the EU; it is not exporting vaccines intended for home use and will give any surplus to Ireland. In contrast, the EU- which is facing delays and shortages in vaccine orders – exported 25 million doses of coronavirus vaccines, including eight million doses to Britain, three million to Canada, two- and one-half-million to Mexico and 651,000 to the US between 1 February and 1 March 2021. Source
• Kenya and Morocco approve the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine. Source

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