The Morning Dispatch: Biden and Xi

Happy Tuesday! It’s high time that Matt send Anna and Victoria home on The Bachelor. They’re just not worth the drama. 

[Editor’s Note: For those readers who have joined us since last February, yes, Declan watches The Bachelor, and yes, it’s deeply embarrassing both for him and for us.]

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • Biotech company Moderna announced yesterday that preliminary results from various studies show the two-dose regimen of its COVID-19 vaccine is “expected to be protective against emerging strains [of the coronavirus] detected to date,” including those in the UK and South Africa. As a proactive measure, the company is planning to develop and test a booster vaccine dose specifically targeted at neutralizing the South Africa variant.

  • Pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. shut down its COVID-19 vaccine program after trial data showed that its two developmental vaccines failed to produce a significant enough immune response. Merck was not a participant in Operation Warp Speed, and the U.S. government was not relying on its inoculations in its near-term push to vaccinate the country.

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