Experts foresee triumph and tragedy in COVID-19 vaccine quest

Panel on COVID-19 vaccine
GeekWire founders John Cook and Todd Bishop chat with a trio of experts involved in the quest to develop coronavirus vaccines on the first day of the 2020 GeekWire Summit. The annual event is being conducted virtually due to COVID-19 concerns. (GeekWire Photo)

The good news is that Operation Warp Speed, the multibillion-dollar effort to develop vaccines for COVID-19, is moving ahead at a pace that justifies its name.

The bad news is that despite all that effort, the coronavirus outbreak is still likely to be with us next year — and low- to medium-income countries such as India are likely to be hit particularly hard.

“We’re going to probably see a lot of deaths,” said Lynda Stuart, deputy director for vaccines and human immunobiology at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “It’s going to be a great inequity and tragedy that will unfold.”

Stuart and other experts involved in the vaccine quest laid out their assessment of the road ahead today during the first session of the 2020 GeekWire Summit.

The fact that the annual summit’s first session focused on the pandemic was apt, and not just because beating COVID-19 is the top issue facing the world today.

Safety concerns forced the GeekWire Summit to go totally virtual for the first time in its eight-year history — and you just knew there had to be a few technical glitches to overcome. (Any attendees who weren’t able to stream the panel live can access it on-demand in the event platform.)

Any technical challenges that cropped up during today’s panel would pale in comparison with the challenges being faced by Stuart and her two fellow panelists: Melanie Ivarsson, chief development officer for Moderna; and Deborah Fuller, a vaccinologist at the University of Washington.

COVID-19 vaccine panelists on Zoom
Participants in the GeekWire Summit panel on the search for COVID-19 vaccines include Moderna’s Melanie Ivarsson (top left), the University of Washington’s Deborah Fuller (top right) and the Gates Foundation’s Lynda Stuart. (GeekWire Photo)

“I’ve never worked this fast in my life, or this hard, and it’s as if everything’s moving super-fast,” Fuller said. “And yet, at the same time, it feels like it’s just one long, nine-month day.”

Fuller has been studying how the coronavirus behind COVID-19 spreads, and how next-generation vaccines can stop it. Ivarsson’s company, meanwhile, has been racing to test and distribute one of those next-gen, RNA-based vaccines. Moderna’s vaccine candidate went through its first clinical trial in Seattle, and the company is just about to finish enrolling 30,000 volunteers for the crucial Phase 3 trial.

“We are trying to save the world, and it’s a very exciting way to spend your day,” Ivarsson said.

The course of the COVID-19 vaccine race hasn’t always run smooth: One company, AstraZeneca, had to pause its Phase 3 trial last month when one of the participants suffered an unexplained illness. Johnson & Johnson paused its trial this week for similar reasons.

Ivarsson said Moderna’s vaccine development program has continued on track, but she stressed that safety is

Lilly Covid-19 antibody treatment trial paused. Experts say that’s normal

Drugmaker Eli Lilly and Co. said Tuesday that the government-sponsored clinical trial of its Covid-19 antibody treatment has been paused because of a safety concern.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the ACTIV-3 independent data safety monitoring board (DSMB) has recommended a pause in enrollment,” Lilly spokeswoman Molly McCully said in an emailed statement. “Lilly is supportive of the decision by the independent DSMB to cautiously ensure the safety of the patients participating in this study.”

The Lilly drug, called LY-CoV555, is similar to the Regeneron antibody treatment President Donald Trump received after his Covid-19 diagnosis. It is currently being tested in hospitalized patients.

Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

The pause in the Lilly trial comes a day after Johnson & Johnson paused its Covid-19 vaccine trial after a volunteer had an unexplained illness. J&J said the participant’s condition was being reviewed and evaluated by the Data Safety Monitoring Board. It’s unclear whether the volunteer who had an adverse event had received the actual vaccine or a placebo.

It’s not uncommon for late-stage trials to hit bumps.

“Pauses are not infrequent in a clinical trial, and in these studies, they are going to be probably a bit more frequent as the development line for a product is significantly truncated,” Dr. Carlos del Rio, infectious diseases expert at Emory University School of Medicine, said.

Just last week, Lilly requested emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration for the antibody treatment, using data from a separate clinical trial — not the trial that was just paused.

No published or peer-reviewed results have been released about the treatment, but last month the company released partial results from a trial of the drug, which suggested it could help keep patients with mild to moderate forms of the illness from progressing to a point where they would need to be hospitalized.

The paused trial is sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health. When the phase 3 trial was announced in August, Lilly had planned to enroll approximately 300 volunteers hospitalized with mild to moderate illness with fewer than 13 days of symptoms, according to the NIH. Participants were also given the antiviral remdesivir.

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Disc Medicine Expands Scientific Advisory Board with Leading Experts in Hepcidin Biology

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Oct. 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Disc Medicine, a company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel therapeutic candidates for serious and debilitating hematologic diseases, today announced the appointment of Tomas Ganz, MD, PhD and Elizabeta Nemeth, PhD to its scientific advisory board, adding valuable expertise in hepcidin biology.

Disc Medicine is a hematology company harnessing new insights in hepcidin biology to address ineffective red blood cell production (erythropoiesis) in hematologic diseases. Focused on the hepcidin pathway, the master regulator of iron metabolism, Disc is advancing first-in-class therapies to transform the treatment of hematologic diseases. (PRNewsfoto/Disc Medicine)

“We are thrilled to welcome  Dr. Ganz and Dr. Nemeth to our Scientific Advisory Board, particularly at such an exciting time in a field that they helped pioneer,” said John Quisel, JD, PhD, Chief Executive Officer at Disc Medicine. “Together they were instrumental in characterizing the fundamental role of hepcidin in iron homeostasis, and I’m delighted to be working with them as we advance our hepcidin-targeted programs into the clinic.”

Dr. Ganz is a Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Pathology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, where he studies the role of small peptide regulators in human physiology and disease and is credited for the discovery of the iron-regulatory hormone hepcidin. Dr. Ganz received his PhD in Applied Physics from Caltech and his MD from UCLA, joining UCLA as a faculty member in 1983 after having completed training in Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Medicine. In 2005 he received the Marcel Simon Prize of the International Bioiron Society for the discovery of hepcidin and in 2014 was honored by the E. Donnall Thomas Award from the American Society of Hematology for his research in iron homeostasis, including the discovery of the iron-regulatory hormone hepcidin and investigation of its roles in iron metabolism.

“It has been immensely gratifying to see the hepcidin story unfold as our understanding of hepcidin’s role across different diseases has grown,” said Tomas Ganz, MD PhD. “Disc has taken a compelling approach to targeting hepcidin with two programs guided by human genetic findings. I’m delighted to be a part of this vision, particularly as they look to enter the clinic with their first program next year.”

Dr. Nemeth is a Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and Director of the UCLA Center for Iron Disorders. Dr. Nemeth received her PhD in Cell, Molecular and Neurosciences at the University of Hawaii and completed a postdoctoral fellowship studying the pathobiology of hepcidin at UCLA. During her tenure she has made major contributions to the understanding of iron homeostasis and its dysregulation in disease, such as characterizing the regulation of hepcidin production by inflammation and iron and elucidating the mechanism of action of hepcidin in regulating dietary iron absorption and release from stores. Dr. Nemeth also described the role of hepcidin in various iron disorders including hereditary hemochromatosis, iron-loading anemias and iron-restricted anemias. Dr. Nemeth was a standing member of the Molecular and Cellular Hematology Study Section of the National Institutes of Health, is President-Elect of the International BioIron Society, and an associate editor of the American Journal of Hematology. Dr. Ganz and Nemeth co-founded three biotechnology companies focused on hepcidin-targeted

CDC says teen gave COVID-19 to 11 relatives across 4 states during a family vacation. Experts see a cautionary tale for holidays

A COVID-19 outbreak that infected 11 people across four states began with a 13-year-old girl who transmitted the virus during a three-week family vacation over the summer, according to a Centers for Disease Control report.

In Illinois — one of the states involved — a Cook County Department of Public Health spokeswoman said that the community where some of the family members live is not currently at risk from this particular outbreak, which occurred months ago.

But the case shows that kids and teens can contract and spread the virus, public health experts say. It also serves as a cautionary tale before the holiday season, a traditional time for many large family get-togethers.

“(The) outbreak highlights several important issues that are good to review before the holidays., a Cook County Department of Public Health spokeswoman said in an email.

The CDC noted that the case underscores the risk of exposure during gatherings, as well as the benefits of social distancing.

“SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) can spread efficiently during gathering, especially with prolonged, close contact,” the CDC report said. “Physical distancing, face mask use and hand hygiene reduce transmission; gatherings should be avoided when physical distancing and face mask use are not possible.”

The three-week family gathering involved five households from four states, according to the CDC report, which was released earlier this month. The report in a footnote mentioned public health departments in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Illinois and Georgia; it did not give any other information about where the family gathering took place or the states where various relatives lived.

The report said the initial patient, a 13-year-old girl, was exposed to COVID-19 during a large outbreak in June. A rapid antigen test four days after her exposure came back negative, before her symptoms began. Two days later she had some nasal congestion, her only symptom. That day she traveled with her parents and two brothers to attend a large family gathering, which began the following day, according to the CDC report.

She was one of 14 relatives ranging in age from 9 to 72 who shared a five-bedroom, two-bathroom home for eight to 25 days, the report said. The relatives did not wear face masks or practice physical distancing, according to the report.

Eleven other family members contracted the virus; one was hospitalized and another went to the emergency room for treatment of respiratory symptoms, but both recovered, according to the report.

“This outbreak highlights several important issues,” the report said. “First, children and adolescents can serve as the source for COVID-19 outbreaks within families, even when their symptoms are mild. Better understanding of transmission by children and adolescents in different settings is needed to refine public health guidance.”

Six additional family members did not stay at the home but did visit on different occasions, maintaining physical distance from relatives from other households. None of those individuals developed symptoms, and four tested negative for the virus, the CDC found.

“None of the six family members

Why experts say the pandemic-led virtual fitness boom is here to stay

  • Much like how Netflix and Amazon disrupted the way Americans watch television and shop, experts say the on-demand fitness boom is ushering in the next wave of digitization in our lives. 
  • While the pandemic was integral to the rise of digital fitness, Matthew Schopfer, head of research at Infusive, said it ultimately served to accelerate a push towards digital fitness that had long been in the works.
  • “The virtual component was already a big deal for us as a brand,” Retro Fitness Chief Marketing Officer Victor Bao told Business Insider. “And then as the pandemic shut down every single business in the world, we made a big thrust into virtual.”
  • We talked to leaders in the fitness industry and analysts about why they think virtual fitness is here to stay, even when the pandemic subsides. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The pandemic has drastically changed the way Americans exercise, and now experts say it will have lasting effects on the long-term digitization of fitness. 

With gyms and fitness studios temporarily shuttered earlier this year to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, consumers found alternate outlets to break a sweat — namely virtual, on-demand fitness programs.

According to Matthew Schopfer, head of research at investment management firm Infusive, while it is true that the pandemic was integral to this shift, the coronavirus ultimately served to accelerate a push toward digital fitness that had long been in the works. 

Much like how Netflix and Amazon disrupted the way Americans watch television and shop, Schopfer says the on-demand fitness boom is another example of digitization infiltrating all aspects of our lives.  

“We’ve seen this across all sorts of different industries and categories, whether that’s e-commerce or digital entertainment or food delivery, and also of course on-demand fitness,” he told Business Insider. “The rising penetration of digital consumption was already an ongoing global secular trend.” 

Infusive’s early research also indicates that there will be a “permanent consumer behavior change” regarding how Americans exercise over the long term, Schopfer added.

“We’re less of the view that as soon as the economy reopens everything goes back to normal,” he said. “[Virtual fitness] may decelerate from the current growth level, but broadly speaking, we think this shift toward things being more digital at the consumer level is really here to stay.”

Gyms and studios find their virtual footing 

For Retro Fitness — a chain of 150 gym locations across the US — wading into virtual programming during the pandemic ultimately helped to accelerate the company’s pre-pandemic push towards becoming a “lifestyle brand,” according to Chief Marketing Officer Victor Bao. 

“The virtual component was already a big deal for us as a brand,” Bao told Business Insider. “And then as the pandemic shut down every single business in the world, we made a big thrust into virtual.”

He added that this effort included streaming classes taught by Retro instructors, but also mental health and nutritional content. Just last week, the company launched “Retro Fitness Kitchen,” a

Pelosi proposes experts review a president’s mental fitness under 25th Amendment

House Democrats, who have accused President Donald Trump of acting erratically as he battles the coronavirus, on Friday introduced a proposal to establish a panel to determine a president’s fitness for office under the Constitution’s 25th Amendment.



text: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi delivers remarks during a news conference to introduce legislation establishing a Commission on Presidential Capacity in the Capitol, in Washington, Oct. 2020.


© Shawn Thew/EPA via Shutterstock
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi delivers remarks during a news conference to introduce legislation establishing a Commission on Presidential Capacity in the Capitol, in Washington, Oct. 2020.

The move comes after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that Trump was in an “altered state,” but said Friday the measure wouldn’t apply to him.

“This is not about President Trump. He will face the judgment of the voters. But he shows the need for us to create a process for future presidents,” Pelosi told reporters at Capitol Hill news conference as she introduced the bill.

“This legislation applies to future presidents, but we are reminded of the necessity of action by the health of the current president,” she added. “It’s not about any of us making a judgment about the president’s well-being.”

When pressed by reporters if she thinks it’s time to invoke the 25th Amendment concerning Trump, Pelosi responded: “That’s not for us to decide.”

The measure would create an expert panel – with members appointed by Democratic and Republican leaders of the House and Senate – to conduct a medical exam at the direction of Congress to “determine whether the President is mentally or physically unable to discharge the powers and duties of the office,” according to the text of a version of the proposal introduced in 2017 by Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland.

(MORE: In information vacuum, experts say Trump’s steroid treatment may hold clues to health status)

Raskin, a former constitutional law professor and member of the House Judiciary Committee, said the panel would include doctors as well as former presidents and Cabinet secretaries, who would each serve four-year terms.

“The population is getting older, politicians are getting older,” he said in an interview earlier this week. “It’s not hard to think that there will be future situations where the president’s physical and mental state may create issues for us. So, we just need to make sure that we have a structure and a process in place to address it.”



text: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi delivers remarks during a news conference to introduce legislation establishing a Commission on Presidential Capacity in the Capitol, in Washington, Oct. 2020.


© Shawn Thew/EPA via Shutterstock
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi delivers remarks during a news conference to introduce legislation establishing a Commission on Presidential Capacity in the Capitol, in Washington, Oct. 2020.

Pelosi has repeatedly expressed concerns in public and private this week about President Trump’s health amid his treatment for COVID-19.

Trump, at the direction of his doctors, has been taking dexamethasone, a steroid used to reduce lung inflammation in COVID patients, that can, in some cases, prompt psychiatric side effects, including mood swings, rage and psychosis.

“The president is, shall we say, in an altered state right now,” Pelosi said Thursday during an interview with Bloomberg TV. “I don’t know how to answer for that behavior.”

She continued, “There are

Being Physically Active Is The Best Medicine, Believe Experts

World Arthritis Day 2020: Being Physically Active Is The Best Medicine, Believe Experts

World Arthritis Day 2020: Inflammatory kind of arthritis can develop rapidly

Highlights

  • Osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are sometimes mistaken for one another
  • Osteoarthritis refers to degeneration of joints
  • Osteoporosis leads loss of bone mass and increases risk of fracture

World Arthritis Day 2020: October 12 is observed as World Arthritis Day. Arthritis is inflammation of the joints which affects movement. The urban population has become increasingly sedentary, resulting in poorer muscle mass and bone strength. We are now faced with a modern epidemic where prevalence of arthritis (especially knee arthritis) has become very common in men and women post a certain age. This age related arthritis which is by far the most common type of arthritis is called osteoarthritis.

World Arthritis Day: What you need to know about osteoporosis and osteoarthritis

In India, osteoarthritis occurs in the age of 55-60. Not only is the patient profile of those suffering from arthritis in the subcontinent, getting younger but they also tend to have much more severe arthritis with more deformities and disabilities than earlier generations.

Also read: Here’s What You Can Do To Control Your Arthritis Risk: Save Your Joints With These Precautions

Osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are sometimes mistaken for one another. While osteoarthritis refers to degeneration of joints, osteoporosis refers to the loss of bone mass that raises the risk of fracture.

A silent ailment, Osteoporosis can progress over the years and go undetected without symptoms until a fracture occurs. Osteoporosis is a painless condition which becomes painful if someone experiences a broken bone or fracture.

One of the common types of arthritis is osteoarthritis; a painful condition that can affect the joints, especially the hips, knees, neck, lower back, or hands and feet. The cartilage in the joint begins to get rough and thin when osteoarthritis develops.

Symptoms of arthritis

Depending on the type of arthritis you have, symptoms may include pain, stiffness, swelling, redness and decreased range of motion.

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Arthritis can cause pain and inflammation in joints
Photo Credit: iStock

Causes of arthritis

The increasing prevalence of arthritis and its crippling effects are related to the changes in the lifestyle and the diet in the Indian populace.

The urban Indian is walking a lot less than his/her ancestors and the amount of physical activity has also decreased. Women are more affected due to various factors, including decreasing physical activity and less muscle mass.

The most common joint affected by arthritis is the joint. The knees are weight bearing joints, largely driven by a group of muscles in front of the thighs, the quadriceps. These muscles weaken quite rapidly due to inactivity and long periods of sitting. Weakness of these muscles usually increases arthritis pain which further deteriorate these muscles.

The inactivity also contributes to obesity which is one of the prime reasons for the aggravation of arthritis.

The cumulative affect deprives patients, their ability to walk, conduct activities of daily living and enjoy life in general. A more sinister effect is on the general health of a patient due

Heavy drinking is killing women in record numbers, and experts fear a COVID-related spike | Coronavirus

On her last day of consciousness, Misty Luminais Babin held onto hope. “I choose life,” the 38-year-old told her sister, husband and doctor from inside the Ochsner Medical Center ICU.

But her sister, Aimee Luminais Calamusa, knew it was a choice made too late. A former ICU nurse herself, she was trained to recognize signs of the end. Even after draining 3 liters of fluid from Babin’s abdomen, her liver — mottled and scarred by years of heavy drinking — couldn’t keep up. The fluid had started building up in her lungs and she gasped for air. Without oxygen, her other organs began to fail.

“When I left that day, I knew that would be the last time I talked to her, ever,” said Calamusa. “It was really hard to walk out that door.”

Babin died two days later, on June 14 of this year, after a long struggle with alcohol use disorder. Her family said the fight intensified in the last four or five years after a rough breakup, but may have been more stealthy and prevalent than they ever realized.

“None of us knew,” said Calamusa, who wrote a moving and honest obituary in The Times-Picayune | New Orleans Advocate about her sister’s struggles. “She hid it very well. I think she probably has been an addict for a long time. She lost control very quickly.”



NO.alcohol.adv3

Misty Luminais Babin checked into the hospital a week before she died on June 14, 2020, after struggling with alcohol use disorder for years. Her family scattered her ashes on August 31, 2020, what would have been in 39th birthday, in her “thinking spot,” a quiet place along the Mississippi River. 




With an average of 1,591 alcohol-related deaths from 2011 to 2015, Louisiana is tied for 10th among U.S. states on a per-capita basis when it comes to people succumbing to the disease, according to a recent analysis of death certificates by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Across the country, alcohol-related deaths have risen by 51% over a period covering most of the past two decades, according to a study from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism published earlier this year.

The most alarming increase was among women. Deaths increased by 85% from 1999 to 2017.

And amid all-time high levels of anxiety and economic uncertainty, public-health experts fear that deaths like Babin’s will spike in the coming years. New data examining how drinking habits have changed during the pandemic showed drinking overall has increased by 14% compared with a year ago. In women, the increase was 17%, according to the peer-reviewed study published Sept. 29 in JAMA Network Open by researchers from the RAND Corporation.

Binge drinking in women, defined as four drinks over two hours, increased by 41% from 2019 to 2020. 

“Drinking by women is sort of overlooked,” said Michael Pollard, author of the JAMA study. “And this points out that it is a real concern. We don’t really have

Pelosi to propose experts review a president’s mental fitness under 25th Amendment

House Democrats, who have accused President Donald Trump of acting erratically as he battles the coronavirus, on Friday will introduce a proposal to establish a panel to determine a president’s fitness for office under the Constitution’s 25th Amendment.



a person wearing a costume: Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi gestures during the Weekly News Conference on Capitol Hill, Oct. 8, 2020 in Washington, DC.


© Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi gestures during the Weekly News Conference on Capitol Hill, Oct. 8, 2020 in Washington, DC.

The move comes after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday Trump was in an “altered state,” but has said it likely wouldn’t apply to him.

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The measure would create an expert panel – with members appointed by Democratic and Republican leaders of the House and Senate – to conduct a medical exam at the direction of Congress to “determine whether the President is mentally or physically unable to discharge the powers and duties of the office,” according to the text of a version of the proposal introduced in 2017 by Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland.

(MORE: In information vacuum, experts say Trump’s steroid treatment may hold clues to health status)

Raskin, a former constitutional law professor and member of the House Judiciary Committee, said the panel would include doctors as well as former presidents and Cabinet secretaries, who would each serve four-year terms.

“The population is getting older, politicians are getting older,” he said in an interview earlier this week. “It’s not hard to think that there will be future situations where the president’s physical and mental state may create issues for us. So, we just need to make sure that we have a structure and a process in place to address it.”



a person wearing a costume: Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi gestures during the Weekly News Conference on Capitol Hill, Oct. 8, 2020 in Washington, DC.


© Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi gestures during the Weekly News Conference on Capitol Hill, Oct. 8, 2020 in Washington, DC.

Pelosi, who will reintroduce the measure with Raskin on Friday, has repeatedly expressed concerns in public and private this week about President Trump’s health amid his treatment for COVID-19.

Video: 25th Amendment sets president’s line of succession (Associated Press)

25th Amendment sets president’s line of succession

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Trump, at the direction of his doctors, has been taking dexamethasone, a steroid used to reduce lung inflammation in COVID patients, that can, in some cases, prompt psychiatric side effects, including mood swings, rage and psychosis.

“The president is, shall we say, in an altered state right now,” Pelosi said Thursday during an interview with Bloomberg TV. “I don’t know how to answer for that behavior.”

She continued, “There are those who say when you are on steroids or have COVID-19, there may be some impairment of judgment.”

(MORE: All the president’s medicine: How doctors are treating Donald Trump)

Dr. Sean Conley, Trump’s doctor, who has provided little information about the president’s condition and repeatedly contradicted himself in press conferences over the weekend, claimed to reporters on Monday that Trump has not displayed any neurological symptoms from the coronavirus, or side effects from his treatment.



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: President Donald Trump gestures as he returns to the White House, Oct. 5, 2020, after leaving Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, in Bethesda, Md.


© Alex Brandon/AP
President Donald Trump gestures as he

Experts call Trump’s rosy virus message misguided

Should people fear the coronavirus?

Public health experts say 1 million worldwide deaths are among reasons to be concerned, if not fearful, and to take everyday precautions despite rosy advice from the still-recovering president.

“Don’t let it dominate you. Don’t be afraid of it. You’re going to beat it,” Donald Trump said in a White House video released after he left the hospital Monday.

In the United States alone, more than 210,000 people weren’t able to beat it.

The seven-day rolling average for new U.S. cases has climbed over the past two weeks to almost 42,000 per day. The nation also sees more than 700 COVID-19 deaths each day.

COVID-19 also is deadlier than the flu, despite Trump’s claim otherwise. Flu has killed 12,000 to 61,000 Americans annually since 2010, according to CDC estimates.

It is true that the vast majority of people who get COVID-19 develop only mild symptoms. But experts can’t predict which patients will develop dangerous or deadly infections. And only a small percentage of Americans have been sickened by the coronavirus, meaning the vast majority are still at risk for infection.

It is true, as Trump said in the video, that medicines have been found that can treat the virus, reducing chances for severe illness and death. But there is still no cure for it and no definitive date for when an effective vaccine might become widely available.

Another reason for concern is uncertainty over which patients will develop lasting complications affecting the lungs, heart, kidneys and other organs. While these are more common in patients with severe infections, persistent symptoms lasting several months have occurred even in those with mild disease. Fatigue is among the most common.

Taking everyday precautions including wearing masks and social distancing to curb disease spread doesn’t mean the virus is dominating people’s lives, said Dr. Khalilah Gates, an assistant professor of medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago.

“There are things we need to do collectively to make sure we minimize the mortality,” Gates said. “That’s not domination. That’s just being willing to make changes so we can all get through this in a much better and safer way.”

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Follow AP Medical Writer Lindsey Tanner at @LindseyTanner.

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The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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