AstraZeneca puts leading COVID-19 vaccine trial on hold over safety concern

first_imgWhether the illness was directly linked to AstraZeneca’s vaccine remains unclear, the report said. AstraZeneca declined to comment on the report.The suspension of the trial has impacted other AstraZeneca vaccine trials – as well as clinical trials being conducted by other vaccine makers, which are looking for signs of similar reactions, Stat said.The US National Institutes of Health, which is providing funding for AstraZeneca’s trial, declined to comment.AstraZeneca’s statement said that “in large trials, illnesses will happen by chance but must be independently reviewed to check this carefully.”Trials of the vaccine, called AZD1222, are underway at different stages in Britain, the United States, Brazil, South Africa and India. Trials are also planned in Japan and Russia.Shares of AstraZeneca fell more than 8% in after-hours US trading, while shares of rival vaccine developers rose. Moderna Inc was up more than 4% and Pfizer Inc climbed less than 1%.Moderna said in an emailed statement it was “not aware of any impact” to its ongoing COVID-19 vaccine study at this time.Nine leading US and European vaccine developers pledged on Tuesday to uphold scientific safety and efficacy standards for their experimental vaccines despite the urgency to contain the coronavirus pandemic.The companies, including AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer, issued what they called a “historic pledge” after a rise in concern that safety standards might slip in the face of political pressure to rush out a vaccine.The companies said they would “uphold the integrity of the scientific process as they work towards potential global regulatory filings and approvals of the first COVID-19 vaccines.”The other signatories were Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co, GlaxoSmithKline, Novavax Inc, Sanofi and BioNTech. Topics : AstraZeneca Plc on Tuesday said it has paused global trials, including large late-stage trials, of its experimental coronavirus vaccine because of an unexplained illness in a study participant.The vaccine, developed with the University of Oxford, has been widely seen as one of the leading global candidates against the coronavirus, and the suspension of the trial dims prospects for a potential year-end rollout its lead developer had signaled earlier.AstraZeneca said it voluntarily paused trials to allow review of safety data by an independent committee and was working to expedite the review of the single event to minimize any potential impact on the trial timeline. “This is a routine action which has to happen whenever there is a potentially unexplained illness in one of the trials,” the company said in an emailed statement.The nature of the illness and when it happened were not detailed, although the participant is expected to recover, according to Stat News, which first reported the suspension due to a “suspected serious adverse reaction”.The US Food and Drug Administration defines an adverse event as one in which evidence suggests a possible relationship to the drug being tested.According to a New York Times report which cited a person familiar with the situation, a participant based in the United Kingdom was found to have transverse myelitis, an inflammatory syndrome that affects the spinal cord and is often sparked by viral infections.last_img read more

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Brackett bows out with back-to-back wins

first_imgPSC golf from The Outback Golf BarMonday, Nov. 12, Burapha – StablefordNot surprisingly, our field here at Burapha to play the A and B courses was reduced somewhat to 24 players, as the weather looked decidedly dicey with heavy rain overnight and thunderstorms and rain in Pattaya before leaving for Burapha. We were greeted by overcast skies and some light rain prior to tee off but the day just got better with no rain after the first hole and just overcast skies which made great weather for golf.  The marshalls had decided that no carts were allowed on the fairways so we had ‘lift, clean and place’ through the green but the course was in great condition and none of the fairways showed any damage and were hard underfoot and had been cut making them perfect to play off.  Only the bunkers were wet and unfortunately the balls tended to plug but that’s the rub of the green.  The greens were in great condition and were a great pace and consistent throughout.Wednesday podium placers: Paul Bourke (left), Jim Peachey and Greg Hill.Two divisions plus the ‘2’s and the overall winner for the day, and winner of Division 1 was Bernie Stafford with 39 points off his 14 handicap.  Bernie is becoming a Burapha specialist as he also won the division the previous week and it’s great to see him continue his good form.  Other good scores went to Keith Allen (Div A runner-up) with 36 points off his 14 handicap; Greg Hill also had 36 points off his 16 handicap and was the winner in Division 2 from Paul Pedelty with 35 points.Only three ‘2’s and they went to Keith Allen on A3, Paul Pedelty on A6 and Shane Crane (birthday boy) on B3.Div A (0-14)1st Bernie Stafford (14) 39pts2nd Keith Allen (14) 36pts3rd John O’Keefe (14) 33ptsDiv B (15+)1st Greg Hill (16) 36pts2nd Paul Pedelty (15) 35pts3rd Ivan Plunkett (23) 32ptsTuesday, Nov. 13, Pattaya C.C. – StablefordWell, our third visit here since the refurbished back nine opened and it is with some regret that the Outback will be discontinuing their visits to this course.  The local members no longer wish to play on Tuesdays, preferring the three day strategy of Mon, Weds & Fridays and we (the Outback) do not consider the course in good enough condition to take tourists to, particularly at the green fees PCC think they can charge.  The future of the course is also unclear with rumours about that they may have to close the whole course at the beginning of next low season; we shall see but keep our options open.In the meantime, Khao Kheow has been moved to Tuesday to take Pattaya C.C.’s place.The win today went to Seesa (Mam) with a fine 37pts off a 28 h’cap with the Turnip in second with 35; third place was filled by John Kittilsen beating both David & Geoff on count back, all on 33.Perhaps the biggest surprise of the day came from Chad, who had an absolute shocker for 19pts but he bagged the only ‘2’!1st Phompinmon Seesa (28) 37pts2nd Dennis Persson (19) 35pts3rd Jon Kittilsen (19) 33ptsWednesday, Nov. 14, Siam Plantation A & B – Stableford11 Players for Siam Plantation but with such an early start it was understandable and some got caught in traffic on the way and had to hit off later.  It was a great day for golf with no rain, a light breeze and overcast conditions.  The course was again in superb condition and we again got to play Sugar Cane first followed by Tapioca, great layout and a good test of golf.Only one division plus the ‘2’s and Jim Brackett showed a liking for the course with a great score of 38 points off his 6 handicap, with Stephen Mann having 37 points off his 8 handicap and Peter LeNoury taking third place with 35 points off his 11 handicap.Only one ‘2’ and that went to Stephen Mann on the Tapioca 7th.1st Jim Brackett (6) 38pts2nd Stephen Mann (8) 37pts3rd Peter LeNoury (11) 35ptsWednesday, Nov. 14, Pattana C & A – StablefordAn excellent turnout of 21 golfers showed up today to play at Pattana; a few less than expected though as we lost three guys who ended up at Greenwood.  We teed-off 20 minutes early and once again we had the course to ourselves until the last few holes on A.The course has improved immensely since we last played here in October and at the very reasonable green fee rate together with a 100 baht discount for 20 players makes this a good alternative Wednesday once a month, as staff are pleasant and the facilities are excellent.Welcome to Derek Stephenson and also to Mod who we haven’t seen for a very long time and well played to Bourkie for his fine 39pts off the shorter yellow tees; maybe the whites next time!  Jim Peachey at long last found himself on the podium with 36 and they took the first and second places of Div A respectively.Div B went to Greg Hill with 38pts, which follows his good round at Burapha on Monday; second in this Div was Barry Copestake on 37.Sadly we say good bye to Stuart Tinkler & Ken Davidson and mates and we look forward to seeing you all next time, safe journey back.There were five ‘2’s from Jim Peachey & Barry Copestake (hole C2), Derek Stephenson (hole C7), Ken Davidson on hole C12 and Greg Hill on hole 17.Div A (0-15)1st Paul Bourke (10) 39pts2nd Jim Peachey (12) 36pts3rd Derek Stephenson (13) 34ptsDiv B (16+)1st Greg Hill (16) 38pts2nd Barry Copestake (16) 37pts3rd Chris Thompson (24) 36ptsFriday, Nov. 16, Green Valley – Stableford41 players went to Green Valley for our Friday competition on an overcast, cool day with a light breeze, just a great day for golf.  Thanks to Suzi, all players managed to get off the tee on time and all groups were finished in just over 4 hours, which was very good but the pace of play was stop/start especially on the back nine.The course continues to improve and was very heavily booked which just goes to show how popular this course is becoming; but some of the greens need a little bit of TLC but overall the course was in good condition.Just a couple of additional points from Suzi; we did have a ‘no show’ today which does make life difficult for the organisers, so please try to let us know as early as possible if you can’t make it and secondly there was a case of somebody hitting up on the group in front, so two things: a) please don’t do it and b) all the caddies in your group are banned from working for one day if you do.So to the scores – some good ones from players in all divisions and in Div A if you didn’t break par then you weren’t in the winners’ circle.  Jim Brackett, who returned to the States the next day, finished on a high with another win today (38pts) to follow his Weds win at Plantation, so well done Jim and have a good flight back.  In second place was Ian Heddle, who found his form at last with a fine 37 playing off 5 to beat Peter LeNoury on count back.In Div B, the honours went to one of the Irish contingent, Liam O’Keefe (38pts) beating Murray Hart (35) and four guys all on 33pts, headed by Pete Stonebridge; and Div C was a good result for playing partners Clint & Chris as they shared the top two spots both with 39pts, with Clint getting the nod.There were three ‘2’s from Capt’ Steve (4th), Suzi Lawton & Murray Hart (both on the 9th).Div A (0-13)1st Jim Brackett (6) 38pts2nd Ian Heddle (5) 37pts3rd Peter LeNoury (11) 37ptsDiv B (14-18)1st Liam O’Keefe (14) 38pts2nd Murray Hart (14) 35pts3rd Pete Stonebridge (15) 33ptsDiv C (19+)1st Clint Pingree (31) 39pts2nd Chris Thompson (24) 39pts3rd Michael Kelleher (28) 36ptsNote:  The Outback Golf Bar is situated about 6km from Sukhumvit Road along Soi Siam Country.  Call Jack on 087 941 2474.last_img read more

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Golfnutter: Thai Caddies and the Rules of Golf

first_imgTo those of you who do not play competition golf, the following has no relevance.  To those of you who do, read on.Let’s assume you’re playing golf in LOS and your caddie:Uses the flag stick, hand or other implement to touch the putting surface to indicate your line of putt.Asks another more experienced caddie for advice on club selection, or the break on a tricky green? Taps down a pitch-mark on the apron, positioned between your ball and the putting surface. Repairs scuff-marks on your line of putt.Thinking your two-inch putt will be given, picks up your ball.Upon removing her ball-marker, thumbs-down or smooths the putting surface immediately behind your ball. Your playing partner’s caddie replaces his ball in front of the marker – in the normal way.  Yet you’re sure when she originally marked his ball she positioned the marker to the side.  She repeats this action on the next green. These and other similar examples are everyday occurrences on any course in Thailand.  Everyday occurrences?  No, make that many times during the course of a single round, especially rounds involving Farang whose golfing experience is limited to Thailand.A two-inch tap-in and she picks it up! Perhaps some have played with a venue or outlet that insists on adhering to the Rules, to the extent that caddie mistakes, as outlined here, always incur the appropriate penalty.  I personally can’t recall playing with such a group.  And if I did, I doubt whether I would return.Most of us know that under the Rules of Golf, occurrences as outlined above incur a one or two-shot penalty.  More imposing is Rule 1-3 Agreement to Waive Rules, where the penalty for breach is disqualification.  Yet agreement to waive rules is what I’m advocating.What authority am I invoking here?  Unfortunately I cannot instance any, and this is the point of the post.  The Local Rules of IPGC and PSC make no allowance for these or similar situations involving unwitting rules transgressions by caddies.  Yet common sense and equity demands, in my view, golfers not be penalised for the ignorant actions of caddies.The wiser of Pattaya’s golf venues, when asked, will say that golfers need not be penalised for certain actions of their caddies.  A common convention in some golf outlets is to allow caddies one error per event, or one chance per infringement, regardless of how many separate infringements may occur per round.  The golfer is then charged with advising her/him of their mistake, and accepts that a repeat will incur a penalty.  Please note that this involves actions carried out by a caddie about which the golfer had no prior knowledge.  It does not include the golfer accepting her advice in error, e.g. wrongly claiming an entitlement such as a free drop, or mistaking the extent of a hazard line etc.  That’s the golfer’s error, not the caddies.The problem is that many golfers don’t know that such unwritten concessions exist.  Surely a duty of any golfing administration is to ensure all players are playing by the same rules?  So why don’t our local administrators provide for “caddie leeway” in their Local Rules?The answer may have something to do with the likelihood of the R&A approving such a Local Rule being zilch.  Yet any reasonably-minded administrator, who has ever played golf in Thailand, would recognise the need for lenience.It comes down to playing in a country which has its own unique way of doing things, particularly things involving caddies, and to a lesser extent green keepers, six-balls and, well, just being Thai.  Here are some mitigating factors:It is compulsory to hire the services of a caddie when playing golf in Thailand.The golfer, more often than not, doesn’t or can’t choose his/her caddie. Very few caddies understand the Rules of Golf.Few caddies speak or understand English.I believe a somewhat liberal interpretation of Rule 1-4 could apply:Rule 1-4: Points Not Covered by Rules.  If any point in dispute is not covered by the Rules, the decision should be made in accordance with equity. Surely that’s what it’s all about, equity, fairness?  Ensuring we are all playing by the same set of rules, singing from the same song sheet?  Yet how does equity to all apply here, when many don’t know such conventions exist?  Where do they go to find out, and what about the issue of uniformity between venues?The IPGC and PSC contribute a great deal to Pattaya golf.  The enjoyment of thousands of golfers, me included, wouldn’t be the wonderful experience it is without the dedicated work of unselfish golf administrators at both organisations.  Notwithstanding, in this instance some well-intentioned golfers, by sticking to the Rules, are being unfairly penalised.I believe Local Rules is the appropriate forum to address this oversight.Happy golfing,Golfnutterlast_img read more

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