Skip to Main Content

Good morning. Elizabeth Cooney here, taking the wheel from Ed Silverman today as we ponder a long weekend in observance of Labor Day this side of the pond, as Ed would say. Hope you can take a breather of some kind soon: Walk your dog, bike-share to a different borough, climb a new mountain. But stay safe and don’t forget your mask. Now let’s plow into the news of the day. …

Moncef Slaoui, the scientific leader of Operation Warp Speed, will quit his role in the Trump administration’s effort to develop a Covid-19 vaccine if he’s pressured to rush an unsafe or ineffective vaccine, he told Science. “I would immediately resign if there is undue interference in this process,” he said. He also told NPR an October vaccine is “extremely unlikely.” Slaoui has been dogged by controversy over his financial holdings in companies working on Covid-19 vaccines: He was on the board of Moderna (MRNA) and has since stepped down, but he retains his GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) stock.


Russia’s proposed Covid-19 vaccine induced an antibody response in all participants in early trials and found no serious adverse effects, according to the first vetted data on the controversial project, Bloomberg tells us. In two Phase 1/2 studies conducted at two hospitals in Russia on 76 healthy volunteers aged 18 to 60, the vaccine formulations were “safe and well tolerated,” the article published in The Lancet says. All participants were given the vaccine and there was no placebo group — one of several limitations cited by the authors, who add this note of caution: “Further investigation is needed of the effectiveness of this vaccine for prevention of Covid-19.”

Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free!