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Facebook said it would ban anti-vaccination ads from its platform

A participant in a Covid-19 vaccine trial receives a dose of the vaccination in Hollywood, Florida, on August 13, 2020. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP/Getty Images

There are still 11 vaccines in phase 3 clinical trials — no change from last week. One more vaccine was approved for limited use in Russia on Wednesday, bringing the global total of limited-use vaccines to six.

Pfizer won’t seek vaccine approval before November: The CEO of Pfizer said on Friday that the company would not apply for emergency authorization of its Covid-19 vaccine before the third week of November, ruling out a vaccine before Election Day on Nov. 3. Though the company could have preliminary data by the end of October on the vaccine’s effectiveness, it would still need time to collect safety and manufacturing data.

Assuming the data is positive, Pfizer says it will apply for Emergency Authorization Use in the U.S. soon after the safety milestone is achieved. https:// … — PasteIO

Johnson & Johnson pause vaccine trial. On Monday Johnson & Johnson, one of the front-runners in the Covid-19 vaccine race, paused its trial due to “an unexplained illness in a study participant,” STAT News reported. The company’s phase 3 trial started in September and will include up to 60,000 participants. As the Coronavirus Blog previously noted, pausing trials because of unexpected illness is a good thing: It means the trial’s data and safety monitoring board is doing its job.

Russia approves another vaccine for limited use. On Wednesday, Russia announced that it had granted regulatory approval for a vaccine from the Vector Institute called EpiVacCorona, bringing the number of limited-use vaccines approved by the country to two. Russia, controversially, does not require the same rigorous three-phase trials required by the United States before granting approval to a vaccine. According to NPR, clinical trials have not yet begun for EpiVacCorona. In a televised news conference, Putin said early tests of the vaccine on 100 participants were successful.

Big Tech cracks down on anti-vaccination. On Tuesday, Facebook said it would ban anti-vaccination ads from its platform — a significant about-face for the company, which has avoided censoring controversial content in the past, the New York Times reported. YouTube followed suit on Wednesday, saying it would remove any videos containing misinformation about Covid-19 vaccines. As Reuters reported, any YouTube content containing claims about the Covid-19 vaccine that contradicts the consensus of local authorities or the World Health Organization will now be banned.

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