The Covid-19 has caused at least 660,000 deaths worldwide, according to the latest report established by Agence France-Presse, Tuesday July 28. Some 16.5 million cases have been officially diagnosed in 196 countries and territories.

  • Sanofi and GSK promise 60 million doses of their future vaccine in the UK

French laboratories Sanofi and British GSK have promised to provide the British government with 60 million doses of their vaccine against Covid-19. This agreement is concluded “Subject to the signing of a final contract”, specify Sanofi and GSK in a press release.

The two groups, who assure that their vaccine could be authorized as early as the first half of 2021, add that “Active discussions are underway with the European Commission, with France and Italy in the negotiating team, and other governments to ensure global access” to their product. This is the fourth such agreement for the United Kingdom, after those with AstraZeneca, Valneva and the one with BioNTech-Pfizer. The country has thus secured 250 million doses.

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  • An American vaccine with promising results in monkeys

Across the Atlantic, the American biotech company Moderna, in partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has announced promising results in monkeys. The serum, one of two western vaccines along with one from the University of Oxford-AstraZeneca to have started large-scale trials, triggered an immune response ” robust “ and prevented the virus from replicating in the lungs and noses of monkeys, according to results released Tuesday.

“This is the first time that an experimental vaccine against Covid-19 tested on primates has demonstrated its ability to produce rapid viral control in the upper respiratory tract”, welcomed the NIH.

Read also Calendar, clinical trials, funding: where are we in the race for the vaccine against Covid-19?
  • In Russia, a stabilized epidemic and two vaccines under study

The epidemiological situation continues to stabilize in Russia, but it may ” to toggle “Vladimir Putin warned on Wednesday, calling for respect for preventive measures to avoid a second confinement.

“In June and July, the number of coronavirus infections in Russia gradually declined”, assured the Russian president during a videoconference, evoking a halving of the number of new cases compared to the peak of May.

Russia, fourth in the world for the number of contaminations after the United States, Brazil and India, also hopes to start industrial production of two vaccines against the coronavirus, developed by researchers from state centers, in September and October, announced Russian Deputy Prime Minister Tatiana Golikova. One of the vaccines is already being tested on humans, she said.

Read also Calendar, clinical trials, funding: where are we in the race for the vaccine against Covid-19?

Western researchers, however, have expressed their concern at the speed of the development of Russian vaccines, believing that specialists could skip certain steps to speed up their work under pressure from the authorities.

“The Americans were amazed when they heard the Sputnik signal”, the first artificial satellite launched by the USSR in 1957, Kirill Dmitriev, the president of the Russian Sovereign Fund, which is funding the development of the vaccine at the Nikolai Gamaleia Center, told CNN television station on Tuesday. “With the vaccine, it will be the same. We will be the first ”, a assuré M. Dmitriev.

  • Heavily limited Mecca pilgrimage

In Saudi Arabia, the great pilgrimage to Mecca is severely limited. Only 1,000 to 10,000 faithful Muslims, against 2.5 million last year, are participating from Wednesday. Subject to screening tests and placed in quarantine on their arrival, the faithful selected will still have to observe a quarantine after the pilgrimage.

In normal times, the hajj and the “Little pilgrimage” of Umrah bring in about $ 12 billion (10.3 billion euros) per year, but this year the restrictions will worsen the kingdom’s economic slump, affected by falling oil prices.

Read also Beginning of the great pilgrimage to Mecca, in the era of the coronavirus
  • More than 150,000 dead from Covid-19 in the United States

The toll of the epidemic in the United States reached 150,000 dead on Wednesday, according to the count from Johns-Hopkins University, which refers. The country, by far the most bereaved in the world, has recorded more than 4.38 million cases of infection since the start of the pandemic.

On Tuesday, the United States deplored nearly 1,600 additional deaths linked to the coronavirus in twenty-four hours, a heavy daily toll that had not been reached since mid-May, according to figures from the university.

President Donald Trump has once again scrambled the message on Covid-19 after making a dramatic shift a week ago, acknowledging the severity of the health crisis and calling for a mask to be worn. On Tuesday, he retweeted a video showing a group of doctors explaining that masks are not necessary and that he “There is a drug” to treat the coronavirus, hydroxychloroquine. The video was deleted by Facebook, YouTube and Twitter for misinformation.

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The American Medicines Agency (FDA) recommended in mid-June not to prescribe hydroxychloroquine to patients with Covid-19 because of the risks to the heart.

  • In Bombay, half of slum dwellers infected

In Mumbai, India, a study commissioned by the city and published on Tuesday shows that more than half of the slum dwellers of the city in western India appeared to have had the coronavirus and have antibodies.

The country is the third most affected in the world after the United States and Brazil, with nearly 1.5 million cases. Experts have warned that due to the shortage of tests the actual figure could be much higher. Bombay, where some 40% of the population lives in slums, has recorded more than 6,000 deaths so far.

Our selection of articles on the coronavirus

The World with AFP