Manuela Callari

Manuela Callari

Dr Manuela Callari is a Sydney-based freelance science writer who specialises in health and medical stories.

  • Rapid antigen tests

    They’re the fast and cheap COVID-testing alternative. How do they work and when should we use them?

    In Australia, PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests are the gold standard for diagnosing COVID-19, while rapid antige...

    July 23, 2021
  • Anglo or Asian? The only good news from Australia’s sluggish vaccine rollout: the chance to learn from other countries’ reopening experiments.

    What do the UK’s and Singapore’s different approaches mean for our COVID reopening? International...

    After spending most of the past 18 months in and out of lockdown, the UK is planning a full reopening despite the soa...

    July 16, 2021
  • Is a quarter-dose of Moderna vaccine enough?

    Diluting mRNA vaccine still elicits significant immune response and might address world’s shortage.

    According to a preprint study, two shots of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, each containing only one-quarter of the sta...

    July 14, 2021
  • Australian made mRNA vaccines

    For months, experts have been calling for mRNA to be manufactured onshore. It’s not too late to k...

    Last September, German biotech company BioNTech bought a production site from Swiss drugs giant Novartis to manufactu...

    July 9, 2021
  • Is COVID-19 becoming a childhood disease?

    More children are being infected by the Delta variant.

    In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, it became apparent that this coronavirus affected older people more sever...

    July 8, 2021
  • To lockdown or not to lockdown?

    We could be learning from our own experience, experts say.

    Australia does not have a national strategy to deal with hotel quarantine breaches and consequent outbreaks. Quee...

    July 5, 2021
  • We (really) need to talk about reopening…

    Are our leaders looking at the scientific evidence or the ballot box?

    Australia has been one of the world’s COVID-19 success stories, with a total of just over 30,000 cases and 910 deaths...

    July 2, 2021
  • Smart masks to detect COVID-19

    Biosensors woven into your mask could detect if you have been infected with COVID-19.

    Researchers from the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University and the Massachusetts...

    July 2, 2021
  • Delta is keeping Australia on alert

    The fast-spreading SARS-CoV-2 variant named Delta can transmit through “fleeting contact”.

    This article was first published on 22nd June 2021. Up-to-date information on the current outbreak in NSW may be foun...

    June 28, 2021
  • AstraZeneca COVID vaccines now sit on the shelf. What next?

    New blood clot cases have led to a further revision of rules around Australia’s only locally prod...

    Yesterday, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) revised its recommendations for the AstraZ...

    June 18, 2021
  • What are T cells and how do they help immunity?

    T cells might play a crucial role in COVID-19 vaccines efficacy against variants.

    COVID-19 vaccines currently rolled out worldwide induce a potent antibody response, protecting vaccinated people agai...

    June 17, 2021
  • How far can SARS-CoV-2 travel into the airways?

    A mathematical model shows it reaches deep into our lungs, and more to the right than the left.

    SARS-CoV-2 is transmitted by aerosols – tiny particles delivered through coughing, sneezing and talking that remain s...

    June 15, 2021
  • Developing vaccines for forgotten flaviviruses

    While COVID-19 continues to dominate headlines, flaviviruses have silently affected thousands wor...

    In early 2015, several people presented to hospitals in north-eastern Brazil with mild fever, rashes, conjunctivitis,...

    June 11, 2021
  • Surviving aged care in a pandemic

    With the Melbourne lockdown set to lift, many questions remain around vaccine rollout in aged care.

    On 27 May Victoria entered its fourth lockdown after yet another COVID-19 quarantine breach. A few days into the lock...

    June 10, 2021
  • New variants on the rise

    Fast emerging and spreading of potentially more dangerous SARS-CoV2 variants keep threatening the...

    In the past few days, two main variants first identified in India have crowded Australian newspapers' headlines. Thes...

    June 4, 2021
  • It’s a small, silent, stable world

    Creating the conditions to see things at an atomic level requires a special brand of engineering....

    At 10 Innovation Walk on Monash University’s Clayton Campus, in Melbourne, there’s a building like no other in Austra...

    May 28, 2021
  • Remember the flu?

    Influenza is at a record low in Australia but getting a flu vaccine is still a good idea.

    An astonishingly low number of influenza cases have been recorded in the past 12 months. From the start of the year t...

    May 28, 2021
  • Could a nasal spray protect you from COVID-19?

    Heparin might work as a short-term protective shield against COVID-19 when squirted up the nose b...

    Researchers from the University of Melbourne have observed that spraying heparin on epithelial cells stops SARS-CoV-2...

    May 25, 2021
  • How do we vaccinate the world?

    It’s going to require a global effort – from which much of the globe is excluded.

    Much as isolated Australians might like to pretend otherwise, COVID-19 continues to fill mortuaries across the world....

    May 21, 2021
  • Can I get two different COVID-19 vaccines?

    Combining different COVID-19 shots could speed immunisation campaigns. Would it be safe and effec...

    A UK study launched in February is comparing combinations of the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines in a bid to ease the...

    May 20, 2021
  • Hesitant about COVID-19 vaccines? You’re not alone

    People have the right to ask questions, experts say: but the Australian Government really needs t...

    The latest data from the COVID-19 vaccine preparedness study see Australians’ intention to get a COVID-19 vaccine, po...

    May 19, 2021
  • I’m pregnant. Should I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

    Without enough women in clinical trials, it is hard to say.

    Getting any type of vaccination is a big decision when pregnant – but the more data we have the better informed we ca...

    May 12, 2021
  • One billion doses reached

    Global vaccine rollout is underway, but disparity might not allow us to get the pandemic under co...

    About a week ago, the world reached a remarkable milestone. Only 14 months after the World Health Organization (WHO) ...

    May 10, 2021
  • COVID-19 breaks out in Timor-Leste

    COVID-19 and severe floods are putting Timor-Leste’s health care system under increasing pressure.

    Australia’s near neighbour, and former Portuguese colony with a population of 1.2 million, Timor-Leste has remained r...

    May 7, 2021
  • Inside ATAGI, Australia’s vaccine advisory group

    Who are the experts behind Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout and how did they decide the process?

    When the COVID-19 pandemic started spreading beyond China’s borders and reached Australia early in 2020, the Australi...

    May 7, 2021
  • Do we need to vaccinate kids against COVID-19?

    Early results in from first clinical trials on children.

    When we think of vaccination, we generally think of children because that is when we usually get immunised. With COVI...

    April 28, 2021
  • Opioids and overdose risk

    Co-prescription of opioid antagonists could reduce fatal overdose risk, experts say.

    People who live with ongoing pain face daily challenges in getting on with their lives despite the pain. Among the ma...

    April 26, 2021
  • COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy on the rise

    Community engagement is key, experts say.

    A recent survey from the Melbourne Institute found that, in the past four months, Australians’ willingness to get vac...

    April 23, 2021
  • Australian mRNA vaccines?

    A funding boost should see us manufacturing mRNA vaccines onshore in coming years.

    Yesterday the Victorian Government announced a $50 million investment to set up a facility to develop and manufacture...

    April 22, 2021
  • Vaccine efficacy on variants

    How do we know if current vaccines will be effective against new variants?

    The emerging of new COVID variants around the globe is raising concerns on whether these might blunt the efficacy of ...

    April 16, 2021
  • How do COVID variants emerge?

    Evidence suggests that people with weak immune systems may be accelerating mutations.

    Since its first appearance in Wuhan, China, SARS-CoV2 has been acquiring random mutations. In recent months several n...

    April 15, 2021
  • AstraZeneca vaccine: clot or not?

    The AstraZeneca vaccine’s rollout has now been limited. Is there a clear answer as to whether it ...

    In mid-March, several European countries paused the distribution of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine following report...

    April 9, 2021
  • It’s worth re-engineering the clamp

    UQ’s COVID-19 vaccine trial demonstrated the benefits of the molecular clamp technology.

    The Australian COVID-19 vaccine developed by the University of Queensland was abandoned last December after participa...

    April 6, 2021
  • Immunosuppressants and COVID-19

    The divergent effect of immunosuppressive drugs in COVID-19 infection.

    Immunosuppressant drugs commonly used for autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and Crohn’s di...

    April 6, 2021
  • COVID-19 vaccines and cancer

    Cancer patients are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19 infection. Are vaccines safe and effect...

    People with cancer are at a higher risk of developing severe infection when they catch the SARS-CoV-2 virus. That’s b...

    April 1, 2021
  • Update on AstraZeneca and blood clots

    German researchers might have found the link between the COVID-19 vaccine and unusual cases of bl...

    The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) – the group of experts that advises the government on...

    March 26, 2021
  • Common drug makes COVID worse

    A treatment for inflammatory bowel disease might dampen COVID-19 immune response.

    A new study, published today in the BMJ, showed that a commonly prescribed inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) drug call...

    March 24, 2021
  • Halts to AstraZeneca vaccine in Europe: latest

    Are European countries overreacting, or is there a cause for concern?

    On Monday, Germany, France and Italy joined a group of other European countries that had temporarily stopped administ...

    March 19, 2021
  • South African variant yet more concerning

    Study on AstraZeneca vaccine’s efficacy against B.1.351 shows “disappointing” results.

    Early in February, the South African government suspended the AstraZeneca vaccine rollout after a small-scale trial f...

    March 17, 2021
  • Equitable vaccine access for all

    It’s not just idealism: equal access makes everyone COVID safer.

    The coronavirus pandemic has claimed the lives of more than 2.6 million people globally and disrupted everyone’s live...

    March 15, 2021
  • Pain education could end the opioid crisis

    Training clinicians makes them less likely to prescribe opioids in emergency departments.

    Low back pain is today a leading cause of disability worldwide. It occurs across all ages, socioeconomic levels and c...

    March 11, 2021
  • Global pandemic needs a global plan

    While Australia and Europe squabble over vaccine doses, parts of the world are abandoned.

    On Thursday, Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine bound for Australia. With support f...

    March 6, 2021
  • Determined science

    A multi-skilled, international team conducted the detailed research into the Folbigg family’s gen...

    In 2003, Kathleen Folbigg was convicted of killing her four young children, who died suddenly and unexpectedly in the...

    March 5, 2021
  • The jab is jumpin’

    Australia’s vaccine rollout is underway. Are we on track?

    The first 300,000 doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab landed at Sydney airport last Sunday.The AstraZeneca vaccin...

    March 3, 2021
  • South Africa concern

    Questions over AstraZeneca vaccine’s efficacy against new variant.

    South Africa has suspended the rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine after a small-scale trial found that the vaccine of...

    February 10, 2021
  • What’s so scary about the UK variant?

    Are new COVID-19 strains a more dangerous threat?

    The new highly infectious variant of SARS-CoV-2 first identified in the United Kingdom last December has landed in Au...

    January 9, 2021

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