Government-Funded Scientists Laid the Groundwork for Billion-Dollar Vaccines

When he started researching a troublesome childhood infection nearly four decades ago, virologist Dr. Barney Graham, then at Vanderbilt University, had no inkling his federally funded work might be key to deliverance from a global pandemic.

Yet nearly all the vaccines advancing toward possible FDA approval this fall or winter are based on a design developed by Graham and his colleagues, a concept that emerged from a scientific quest to understand a disastrous 1966 vaccine trial.

Basic research conducted by Graham and others at the National Institutes of Health, Defense Department and federally funded academic laboratories has been the essential ingredient in the rapid development of vaccines in response to COVID-19. The government has poured an additional $10.5 billion into vaccine companies since the pandemic began to accelerate the delivery of their products.

The Moderna vaccine, whose remarkable effectiveness in a late-stage trial was announced Monday morning,

Read More

Attitude of gratitude | Health Beat

Developing a grateful attitude can sometimes require deliberate steps. Recognize the good things in your life and remind yourself of them each day. (For Spectrum Health Beat)

We’re fast approaching the end of 2020, a year that many will be pleased to bid adieu.

We’re also coming up on Thanksgiving, a day specially reserved for counting our blessings and celebrating gratitude.

“Cultivating gratitude in difficult times is actually one of the most helpful things we can do to lead to improved feelings of contentment, happiness and joy,” said Brittany Barber Garcia, PhD, a pediatric psychologist at Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital.

“Research shows that people who have a daily practice of gratitude, or who even just pay attention to the blessings in their lives, are much more likely to experience greater happiness and well-being,” she added. “In fact, gratitude is consistently and strongly associated with positive emotions,

Read More