J&J Halts Vaccine Trial; Excess Deaths Up 20%; Trump Tests Negative

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Johnson & Johnson paused the phase III trial of its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate due to an “unexplained illness” in one of the participants.

From March to August, the U.S. recorded 20% more deaths than expected, with COVID-19 being the documented reason in two-thirds of cases. (JAMA)

As of Tuesday at 8:00 a.m. EST, the unofficial COVID-19 toll included 7,804,660 cases and 215,089 deaths. That’s up 41,203 cases and 313 deaths from this time a day ago.

President Trump has tested negative for COVID-19 “on consecutive days,” said White House doctor Sean Conley, DO. (CNBC)

Even if Regeneron’s monoclonal antibody cocktail lands an FDA emergency use authorization (EUA), it might be “too late” to increase production to meet this year’s demand, said Scott Gottlieb, MD, the agency’s former commissioner. (FiercePharma)

Relief Therapeutics said its investigational drug RLF-100 (aviptadil) increased the likelihood of survival at 60 days in a small trial of critically ill COVID-19 patients with respiratory failure (81% vs 17% with placebo).

New York City police arrested an anti-lockdown protest leader in an Orthodox Jewish community for “inciting a riot and unlawful imprisonment of a journalist.” (NPR)

Two public health experts acknowledged the profession is failing to reach conservatives. (Washington Post)

Abbott announced an EUA for its COVID-19 IgM antibody test, which boasts a specificity of 99.56% and sensitivity of 95.00% with testing 15 days after the start of symptoms.

England is currently reporting more hospitalized COVID-19 patients than in March, and areas with high numbers of infections will face new restrictions. (ABC News)

Meanwhile in France, ICUs are at their highest capacity since late May. (Reuters)

Self-administered home COVID-19 testing could help the U.S. safely reopen ahead of an anticipated second wave, writes MedPage Today Editor-in-Chief Marty Makary, MD. (USA Today)

Multiple coronavirus vaccines should be available by spring, but learning which is most effective will likely come later. (New York Times)

Could a vaccine protect individuals from the novel coronavirus and its various strains better than prior infection? (CNN)

In other news:

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    Ian Ingram joined MedPage Today in 2018 as Deputy Managing Editor, and covers oncology for the site.