Extra that 4,300 SpaceX workers volunteered to be half of a COVID-19 antibody study co-authored by CEO Elon Musk in 2020.
The study, which was lately printed within the journal Nature Communications, exhibits proof that contaminated individuals who exhibited milder signs developed much less of an immunity to COVID-19 than those that bought sicker from the illness. The group behind the study discovered some proof that means there’s a specific threshold of antibodies that might present immunity, although they wrote that “the exact ranges […] related to safety from re-infection stay unclear.”
Vaccines additionally produce a a lot stronger immune response than circumstances with little to no signs, the authors be aware. They hope that this analysis, and different research prefer it, might assist policymakers determine the way to distribute restricted vaccine provides successfully.
SpaceX workers had been requested by e-mail in April 2020 to be a half of the study — proper across the time that Musk was spreading harmful misinformation concerning the virus in inner firm emails and on Twitter. In March 2020, Musk instructed SpaceX workers in an e-mail that he believed they had been extra prone to die in a automotive crash than of COVID-19, and that he didn’t see the virus being “inside the high 100 well being dangers in the US.” He additionally tweeted that very same month that there would “in all probability near zero new circumstances” within the US “by [the] finish of April.”
Practically 500,000 Individuals have died since. Musk contracted COVID-19 in November 2020 and mentioned he skilled gentle signs.
The spaceflight firm had its present medical director — who oversees SpaceX’s budding human flight program — work with an infectious illness knowledgeable from Harvard and a physician from the Ragon Institute to develop the antibody testing program, based on The Wall Road Journal. A bunch of 30 complete co-authors from MIT, Harvard, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Heart, Howard Hughes Medical Heart, SpaceX, and others collaborated on the study. The trouble obtained funding from, amongst others, the Nationwide Institutes of Well being, Musk’s personal charitable basis, the Gates Basis’s COVID-19 vaccine accelerator, and NASA’s Translational Analysis Institute for Area Well being.
The workers who signed up gave blood samples roughly each month. The paper’s authors be aware that 92 p.c of the volunteers had been male, and the median age was 31, which might skew the outcomes. The complete paper and dataset can be found without cost on Nature’s web site.