What We're Reading: 20M Vaccinations in December; PD-L1 Diagnostic for TNBC; Fauci Recommendations

November 16, 2020
AJMC Staff

Nearly 20 million people could be vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 in December; FDA approves a companion diagnostic for triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC); Anthony Fauci, MD, urges continued mask wearing as vaccines become available.

20 Million COVID-19 Vaccinations Targeted for December

Reported by POLITICO, nearly 20 million people could be vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in December. Moncef Slaoui, co-lead of Operation Warp Speed, noted during a Rose Garden event with President Donald Trump that Americans should expect that 25 to 30 million people could be vaccinated each month going forward. However, this timeline depends on the FDA authorizing the emergency use of 1 or more vaccines. Pfizer’s vaccine candidate has been shown to be more than 90% effective, with the company saying it may apply for the emergency use designation later this month.

FDA Approves PD-L1 Companion Diagnostic in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

This past Friday, Agilent Technologies announced it has received approval by the FDA for the use of PD-L1 IHC 22C3 pharmDx as an aid in identifying patients with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) for treatment with pembrolizumab, sold as Keytruda. The announcement marks the first companion diagnostic approved by the FDA to aid the identification of TNBC patients for pembrolizumab, with TNBC now indicated as the seventh cancer type for which PD-L1 IHC 22C3 pharmDx has gained FDA approval.

Fauci Says to Continue Preventive Measures After Vaccination

Reported by The Hill, Anthony Fauci, MD, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said on “State of the Union” yesterday that Americans should continue practicing preventive measures such as wearing masks and social distancing even after a COVID-19 vaccine becomes available. Fauci highlights that even if a vaccine were to be 90% to 95% effective for the general population, this efficacy may vary from person to person.