Extra that 4,300 SpaceX workers volunteered to be a part of a COVID-19 antibody examine 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 acquired sicker from the illness. The group behind the examine discovered some proof that implies there’s a selected 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 instances with little to no signs, the authors word. They hope that this analysis, and other studies like it, may assist policymakers determine methods to distribute restricted vaccine provides successfully.
SpaceX workers had been requested by electronic mail in April 2020 to be part of the examine — proper across the time that Musk was spreading harmful misinformation in regards to the virus in inside firm emails and on Twitter. In March 2020, Musk instructed SpaceX workers in an electronic mail that he believed they were more likely to die in a car crash than of COVID-19, and that he didn’t see the virus being “inside the prime 100 well being dangers in america.” He additionally tweeted that very same month that there would “in all probability near zero new instances” within the US “by [the] finish of April.”
Practically 500,000 Individuals have died since. Musk contracted COVID-19 in November 2020 and said he experienced mild symptoms.
The spaceflight firm had its present medical director — who oversees SpaceX’s budding human flight program — work with an infectious illness skilled from Harvard and a health care provider from the Ragon Institute to develop the antibody testing program, in keeping with The Wall Road Journal. A gaggle of 30 whole co-authors from MIT, Harvard, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Middle, Howard Hughes Medical Middle, SpaceX, and others collaborated on the examine. The hassle obtained funding from, amongst others, the Nationwide Institutes of Well being, Musk’s own charitable foundation, the Gates Basis’s COVID-19 vaccine accelerator, and NASA’s Translational Research Institute for Space Health.
The staff who signed up gave blood samples roughly each month. The paper’s authors word that 92 p.c of the volunteers had been male, and the median age was 31, which may skew the outcomes. The total paper and dataset are available for free on Nature’s website.