The hypothesis that the coronavirus has leaked from a laboratory in Wuhan is “plausible” and deserves further investigation, according to a report on the origins of COVID-19 from a US government laboratory.
The study, prepared in May 2020, was received in October 2020 by the State Department, when the department investigated the origins of the pandemic, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the classified document.
The report comes as questions mount as to whether the virus was the result of an accident at a Chinese lab or whether it has spread through other means. President Joe Biden has ordered the intelligence community to report on the origins in a few months.
Meanwhile, new cases of COVID-19 in many states continue to drop, even as vaccinations slow.
The South Dakota Department of Health reported a dozen new positive coronavirus test results on Monday. The new cases brought the total to 124,273 statewide, making the new total one of the lowest daily reports since the start of the pandemic.
And California on Monday reported a seven-day case rate per 100,000 of 11 people, the third lowest tied with Nebraska.
But experts have told the New York Times that a summer wave could be on the horizon for many summer states, which are behind on vaccinations and are already lifting most restrictions.
“We’re not even close to that in the southern states,” Dr. Peter Hotez, vaccine expert at Baylor College of Medicine, told The Times. He said he foresees a new wave in the South because “we are so underperforming in terms of immunization.”
Also in the news:
►Two-thirds of Major League Baseball’s 30 teams were able to relax coronavirus protocols after four more clubs qualified and brought the total to 20 deductibles reaching 85% vaccination for players and other field staff .
►Moderna said on Monday that it has requested authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents from Health Canada – and will file an emergency use authorization application with the United States Food and Drug Administration “for this large younger population ”.
►Nearly 200,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will expire on June 23 in Ohio, Governor Mike Dewine said on Monday. “For the people of Ohio who have been waiting to get vaccinated, I urge you to act now,” DeWine said in a press release.
►Carnival Cruise Line has said it will require passengers to complete their COVID vaccinations two weeks before boarding for the company’s first trips to the United States after it reopens, departing from Texas in July.
►As part of its strategy to vaccinate more of its population, Washington State will allow adults to get a free joint of marijuana when given an injection.
► Hawaii Governor David Ige extended the moratorium on evictions he put in place during the coronavirus pandemic for another two months on Monday, but he doesn’t expect to maintain it any longer than that.
The numbers of the day: The United States has more than 33.3 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus and more than 597,900 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: Over 173.5 million cases and over 3.7 million deaths. More than 139.78 million Americans have been fully immunized, or 42.1% of the population, according to the CDC.
What we read: The COVID-19 pandemic barely registered as a blip as humanity continued to spew carbon dioxide into Earth’s atmosphere. Read the full story.
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Novavax will soon apply for an emergency authorization in the United States
A large trial for the Novavax vaccine is about to end in the United States, and research president Dr. Gregory Glenn told an audience during a recent webinar that “we are planning to file an application. authorization in the UK, US and Europe in the third quarter, “reported NPR, that is to say from July to September.
Novavax is one of five companies that have received large sums of money from the federal government to develop and / or manufacture COVID-19 vaccines.
In the UK, the company reported that its vaccine protected against all serious illnesses and was more effective than 96% against any disease of the original form of COVID-19, and 86% effective against variant B.1.1 .7 first seen in UK The vaccine was found to be 55% effective in a smaller trial with HIV negative participants in South Africa, where another variant, called B.1.351, was prevalent.
Prisons emptied during the pandemic. Should they stay that way?
In the middle of last year, the number of people incarcerated across the country was at its lowest level in more than two decades, according to a new report released on Monday by the Vera Institute of Justice, whose researchers collected figures from the population of about half of the country’s population. 3,300 prisons to make national estimates.
According to the report, shared with The Marshall Project and The Associated Press, the number of people incarcerated in county jails across the country fell by about a quarter, or 185,000, as counties scrambled to release them. people held on low-level charges, dramatically reduced arrest rates and suspended court operations.
But in most places, the decline did not last long: From mid-2020 to March 2021, the number of people incarcerated awaiting trial or serving short sentences for minor offenses again increased by more than 70,000, reaching nearly 650,000.
“Reducing the incarcerated population across the country is possible,” said Jacob Kang-Brown, senior associate researcher at the Vera Institute of Justice and author of the new report. “We have seen decreases in big cities, small towns, rural counties and suburbs, but the increase we are seeing is troubling. “
Contribute: The Associated Press.