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Hot Topics of the Day are picked by experts to capture the latest information and publications on public health genomics and precision health for various diseases and health topics. Sources include published scientific literature, reviews, blogs and popular press articles.

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Archived Hot Topics of the Day By Date

What’s your risk of catching COVID? These tools help you to find out- A look at apps that predict the chance of infection and illness depending on what you’re doing and where you are.
M Eisenstein, Nature, December 21, 2020

There are now several apps developed to communicate the risks of COVID-19 to the public. These tools are filling important gaps in public-health messaging, particularly in the United States, where an uneven response to the pandemic has exacerbated its severity. To make predictions, these tools require the latest data and models that accurately capture the current levels of infection and the likelihood of transmission in various scenarios.

Recurrent emergence and transmission of a SARS-CoV-2 Spike deletion ΔH69/V70
S Kemp et al, BIORXIV, December 21, 2020

SARS-CoV-2 Spike amino acid replacements in the receptor binding domain (RBD) occur relatively frequently and some have a consequence for immune recognition. Here we report recurrent emergence and significant onward transmission of a six-nucleotide deletion in the S gene, which results in loss of two amino acids: H69 and V70.

How Moderna’s Vaccine Works
J Corum et al, NY Times, December 18, 2020

How the Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Works
J Corum et al, NY Times, December 18, 2020

MIS-C: early lessons from immune profiling
LA Henderson et al, Nat Rev Rheumatology, December 2020

Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a rare complication of SARS-CoV-2 infection that can result in serious illness in the pediatric population but our understanding of this syndrome is in its infancy. MIS-C and Kawasaki disease might share plasma protein profiles but differ in autoantibody targets.

An estimation of undetected COVID cases in France
J Shaman, Nature News, December 21, 2020

Most SARS-CoV-2 infections are undocumented. French health-care records and modelling were used to assess the rate of documentation of COVID-19 cases. The findings highlight the need for improved identification of infections.

Underdetection of COVID-19 cases in France threatens epidemic control.
Pullano Giulia et al. Nature 2020 Dec

We estimate the rate of detection of COVID-19 symptomatic cases in France after lockdown through the use of syndromic surveillance data coupled with mathematical transmission models. Our findings indicate that around 90,000 incident symptomatic infections, corresponding to 9 out 10 cases, were not ascertained by the surveillance system.

A side-by-side comparison of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines
H Branswell, Stat News, December 19, 2020

NIH funds eight studies to uncover risk factors for COVID-19-related inflammatory syndrome in children Awards part of a larger effort to study pediatric COVID-19 and related conditions.
NIH, December 21, 2020 Brand

Public Health Genomics in Action: A State-based Approach to Genomics and Precision Health
CDC Webinar, January 28, 2021 Brand

To date, there are only a few state-based population-based efforts to leverage new science with capacity of medicine, public health and the private sector in improving health outcomes. This seminar will focus on two such initiatives, the Alabama Genomic Health Initiative (AGHI) and the North Carolina Precision Health Collaborative (NCPHC).

Disclaimer: Articles listed in Hot Topics of the Day are selected by the CDC Office of Public Health Genomics to provide current awareness of the scientific literature and news. Inclusion in the update does not necessarily represent the views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nor does it imply endorsement of the article's methods or findings. CDC and DHHS assume no responsibility for the factual accuracy of the items presented. The selection, omission, or content of items does not imply any endorsement or other position taken by CDC or DHHS. Opinion, findings and conclusions expressed by the original authors of items included in the Clips, or persons quoted therein, are strictly their own and are in no way meant to represent the opinion or views of CDC or DHHS. References to publications, news sources, and non-CDC Websites are provided solely for informational purposes and do not imply endorsement by CDC or DHHS.