health

slipping out of control

53.jpgFitness influencer who ‘thought COVID didn’t exist’ shares final message on Instagram before dying

Achieving herd immunity without an effective vaccine would result in widespread fatalities. […] “And remember, [Michael Osterholm, a renowned infectious-disease expert, said,] when we talk about getting to 50%–70% protection, we’re talking you can get there with disease — but if that happens, there will be lots of deaths, a lot of serious illnesses — or we can try to get there with vaccination, and postponing the number of people who get sick until we have the vaccines available. 5o%–70% just slows down transmission, it doesn’t stop it. So this virus is going to keep looking for wood to burn for as long as it can … so, our goal is to get as many people protected with vaccines” [Axios]

Sudden irreversible hearing loss post COVID-19

A man caught coronavirus twice—and it was worse the second time — That makes him the fifth recorded person to have caught the coronavirus twice—and raises more questions about how immunity might work.

Slovakian Prime Minister Igor Matovic announced plans Saturday to test everyone aged 10 years and over in the country for Covid-19 […] “testing will be free-of-charge” for the population of 5.4 million. The campaign is expected to take place over two weekends starting at the end of October. It is not yet known whether participation will be mandatory. [CNN]

Coronavirus transmission is slipping out of control in Belgium, Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke said Sunday, on the eve of new restrictions in the country. “We are really very close to a tsunami,” he warned, speaking to broadcaster RTL. “We no longer control what is happening.” New restrictions are set to take effect on Monday, including the closure of all bars and restaurants, and a midnight curfew nationwide. [Politico]

In a young, low-risk population with ongoing symptoms, almost 70% of individuals have impairment in one or more organs four months after initial symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection. [MedRxiv]

In two early studies, researchers said some patients showed signs of healing just weeks after leaving the hospital. […] about 80 percent of patients have mild to moderate symptoms, 15 percent develop a severe form of the disease and roughly five percent like Ms. Coissieux escalate to critical. […] Ms. Coissieux, 78, was sent to a nearby pulmonary rehabilitation clinic, Dieulefit Santé, where a physical therapist taught her breathing exercises to help restore her lungs and the muscles involved in breathing. When she went home three weeks later, Ms. Coissieux could walk close to 1,000 feet, albeit with a walker. As she continued exercising at home, she grew stronger. “Now I can walk 500 meters with no walker,” or about 1,600 feet. [NY Times]

California biotech company Vaxart, which is working on a Covid-19 vaccine, is under federal investigation and is being sued by a number of investors for allegedly exaggerating its involvement in the US government’s Operation Warp Speed program for developing Covid-19 vaccines and treatments. In June, Vaxart issued a press release that said “Vaxart’s Covid-19 Vaccine Selected for the US Government’s Operation Warp Speed.” The news helped propel Vaxart’s stock price to nearly $17, up from approximately $3, and hedge fund Armistice Capital, which partly controlled Vaxart, sold shares for a profit of more than $200 million, according to its SEC filings. A few weeks before the announcement, Vaxart granted amendments to the warrants agreements, which allowed Armistice to sell almost all of their stock, which they did once the stock price skyrocketed. In July, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) told the New York Times that it had not entered into a funding agreement or negotiations with Vaxart. Vaxart has not been chosen by Operation Warp Speed to receive research funding, but instead had limited involvement, HHS told the New York Times. Vaxart’s vaccine, an oral tablet, was only involved in preliminary studies on primates sponsored by Warp Speed. [CNN]

‘There are certain things — as, a spider, a ghost, the income-tax, gout, an umbrella for three — that I hate, but the thing that I hate the most is a thing they call the Sea.’ –Lewis Carroll

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What if a pill can change your politics or religious reliefs? […] Psychotherapy assisted by psilocybin, the psychedelic compound in “magic mushrooms,” seems to be remarkably effective in treating a wide range of psychopathologies, but also causes a raft of unusual nonclinical changes not seen elsewhere in medicine. […]

Although its precise therapeutic mechanisms remain unclear, clinically relevant doses of psilocybin can induce powerful mystical experiences more commonly associated with extended periods of fasting, prayer or meditation. Arguably, then, it is unsurprising that it can generate long-lasting changes in patients: studies report increased prosociality and aesthetic appreciation, plus robust shifts in personality, values and attitudes to life, even leading some atheists to find God. What’s more, these experiences appear to be a feature, rather than a bug, of psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy, with the intensity of the mystical experience correlating with the extent of clinical benefit.

{ Scientific American | Continue reading }

S.O.S.

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{ Newsweek | White House Gift Shop }

strong Marguerite Gautier energy today

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{ watch clips | Twitter }

My wife wants to make love while the President has the freaking novel coronavirus! Nice try, psycho!

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{ Doctors monitoring Trump’s lungs, giving steroid dexamethasone to fight COVID-19 | Twitter }

Double fucked

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Frederick Trump […] paternal grandfather of Donald J. Trump, […] made his fortune by operating a restaurant and a brothel in Canada […] He died from the Spanish flu in 1918.

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

more { Trump coughed after the word “therapeutics” and it was edited out }

related { company that sells software used in hundreds of clinical trials, including the crash effort to develop tests, treatments and a vaccine for the coronavirus, was hit by a ransomware attack | NY Times }

flattening the curve, vertically

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{ COVID-19 at the White House | “He’s fucked, we’re fucked,” said one White House aide. When informed of the Biden campaign’s announcement that the former VP and his wife, Dr Jill Biden, had both tested negative, the aide replied: “Double fucked.” }

Adam’s age at death is given as 930 years

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life expectancy for men in 1907 was 45.6 years; by 1957 it rose to 66.4; in 2007 it reached 75.5. Unlike the most recent increase in life expectancy (which was attributable largely to a decline in half of the leading causes of death including heart disease, homicide, and influenza), the increase in life expectancy between 1907 and 2007 was largely due to a decreasing infant mortality rate, which was 9.99 percent in 1907; 2.63 percent in 1957; and 0.68 percent in 2007.

But the inclusion of infant mortality rates in calculating life expectancy creates the mistaken impression that earlier generations died at a young age; Americans were not dying en masse at the age of 46 in 1907. The fact is that the maximum human lifespan — a concept often confused with “life expectancy” — has remained more or less the same for thousands of years. The idea that our ancestors routinely died young (say, at age 40) has no basis in scientific fact. […]

If a couple has two children and one of them dies in childbirth while the other lives to be 90, stating that on average the couple’s children lived to be 45 is statistically accurate but meaningless.

{ LiveScience | Continue reading | BBC }

I’ve an eye on queer Behan and old Kate and the butter, trust me. She’ll do no jugglywuggly with her war souvenir postcards to help to build me murial, tippers! I’ll trip your traps!

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[A]bout half of patients report neurological symptoms, including headaches, confusion and delirium, suggesting the virus may also attack the brain.

A new study offers the first clear evidence that, in some people, the coronavirus invades brain cells, hijacking them to make copies of itself. The virus also seems to suck up all of the oxygen nearby, starving neighboring cells to death.

It’s unclear how the virus gets to the brain or how often it sets off this trail of destruction. Infection of the brain is likely to be rare, but some people may be susceptible because of their genetic backgrounds, a high viral load or other reasons.

Forty percent to 60 percent of hospitalized Covid-19 patients experience neurological and psychiatric symptoms, said Dr. Robert Stevens, a neurologist at Johns Hopkins University. But the symptoms may not all stem from the virus’s invasion of brain cells. They may be the result of pervasive inflammation throughout the body.

{ NY Times | Continue reading }

related { ‘Carnage’ in a lab dish shows how the coronavirus may damage the heart }

O, passmore that and oxus another! Don Dom Dombdomb and his wee follyo! Was his help inshored in the Stork and Pelican against bungelars, flu and third risk parties?

The World Health Organization has said it would prefer a vaccine to be at least 70% effective, but it has set its minimum threshold for a Covid-19 vaccine at 50%. […]

According to Shearing, figures from developers suggest 1 billion doses may be available this year, with another 7 billion ready for distribution in 2021. But those numbers assume multiple vaccines are approved, and supply could turn out to be significantly lower. Specialized needles and syringes will be needed to administer the vaccine, but countries including the United States don’t have enough on hand. There’s also a global shortage of glass vials to contend with. The WHO does not expect widespread vaccinations until the middle of next year, a spokesperson said Friday.

{ CNN | Continue reading }

An experimental submarine, the ‘Siren II,’ is sent to find out what happened to the missing ‘Siren I’

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Researchers in Hong Kong are reporting the first confirmed case of reinfection with the coronavirus.

“An apparently young and healthy patient had a second case of Covid-19 infection which was diagnosed 4.5 months after the first episode,” University of Hong Kong researchers said Monday in a statement.

The report is of concern because it suggests that immunity to the coronavirus may last only a few months.

The 33-year-old man had only mild symptoms the first time, and no symptoms this time around. The reinfection was discovered when he returned from a trip to Spain, the researchers said, and the virus they sequenced closely matched the strain circulating in Europe in July and August.

“Our results prove that his second infection is caused by a new virus that he acquired recently rather than prolonged viral shedding,” said Dr. Kelvin Kai-Wang To, a clinical microbiologist at the University of Hong Kong.

Doctors have reported several cases of presumed reinfection in the United States and elsewhere, but none of those cases have been confirmed with rigorous testing. Recovered people are known to shed viral fragments for weeks, which can cause tests to show a positive result in the absence of live virus.

But the Hong Kong researchers sequenced the virus from both rounds of infection and found significant differences in the two sets of virus, suggesting that the patient was infected a second time.

{ NY Times | Continue reading }

Some people can get the pandemic virus twice, a study suggests. That is no reason to panic. […]

Even if the finding settles the question of whether people can be reinfected with the pandemic virus, it raises many additional questions: How often does this happen? Do people have milder infections, or no symptoms at all, the second time around? Can they still infect others? If natural infection does not always confer solid protection, will that be true for vaccines as well?

{ Nature | Continue reading }

In type 1 immunity, pathogen clearance is mediated through effector cells including group 1 innate lymphocytes (ILC1), natural killer (NK) cells, cytotoxic T lymphocytes, and T helper 1 (TH1) cells

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It is clear from this and other studies that the immune response in hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19 is characterized by lymphopenia and the expression of molecules associated with ongoing inflammation8, whereas these same molecules are expressed at a lower level in people with mild or moderate disease. Differences in immune responses between the different categories of disease severity are even more evident when people with very mild or subclinical disease are included in the analyses.

A key next step will be to analyse samples from people with extremely early signs of COVID-19, and to compare longitudinal data in those who do and those who don’t require hospitalization. Some people who develop severe disease seem to have a suboptimal immune response initially, which might allow uncontrolled viral replication. Such high replication might, in turn, contribute to severe disease.

{ Nature | Continue reading }

related { Efforts are ongoing to find which human or viral factors underpin whether a person with COVID-19 will develop severe symptoms. Clinical evidence linked to two viral lineages now provides key insights into this enigma. | Nature }

quote { Longitudinal analyses reveal immunological misfiring in severe COVID-19 }