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Gordo

Just curious, anyone have a plan, or preps for global pandemic?

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I'm not sure what to think about this. 

https://www.technologyreview.com/2020/07/29/1005720/george-church-diy-coronavirus-vaccine/

Some scientists are taking a DIY coronavirus vaccine, and nobody knows if it’s legal or if it works

Famed geneticist George Church and at least 20 others didn’t want to wait for the results of clinical trials: “I think we are at much bigger risk from covid.”

Edited by Thomas G

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From Twitter ...

EdDtvvwWkAALts0?format=jpg&name=small

Quote

My Hydroxychloroquine Deep Dive - long thread

Gotta start with this chart many of you have seen by now

In early June after months of following articles, treatment protocols, declarations, etc. I was curious about how the countries lined up. For the most part, it's accuratepic.twitter.com/BjQ14XV7x2

— Gummi Bear (@gummibear737) July 16, 2020

 

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3 hours ago, Thomas G said:

I'm not sure what to think about this. 

https://www.technologyreview.com/2020/07/29/1005720/george-church-diy-coronavirus-vaccine/

Some scientists are taking a DIY coronavirus vaccine, and nobody knows if it’s legal or if it works

Famed geneticist George Church and at least 20 others didn’t want to wait for the results of clinical trials: “I think we are at much bigger risk from covid.”

I'd ignore it.

  --  Saul

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While still the "fringe view" I think this idea that covid-19 can burn through an area fast and then "burn itself out" is looking more and more likely.

https://blog.argonautcapital.co.uk/articles/2020/07/27/the-biggest-fraud-part-2-the-vaccine-swindle/

I don't like the anti-vax rhetoric though, if you haven't been exposed yet, you probably should get the vaccine when it comes out.  Personally I think I have Covid-19 right now, but I'm not sure (my son's symptoms were FAR worse than mine, all I've had is headache, mild fever that comes and goes, occasional cough, elevated resting heart rate, mild fatigue and weird upper chest area 'tightness').  I haven't been tested, will get the antibody test later this month, but it seems the existing tests may not really give a good indication of actual immunity.

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Gordo,

I'm glad you aren't getting hit too hard by what could be the coronovirus. I presume since you didn't mention it that your oxygen level remains high. Has your son fully recovered? How are your other family members doing? 

--Dean

 

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5 minutes ago, Dean Pomerleau said:

Gordo,

I'm glad you aren't getting hit too hard by what could be the coronovirus. I presume since you didn't mention it that your oxygen level remains high. Has your son fully recovered? How are your other family members doing? 

--Dean

 

My O2 readings have never gone below 98, no loss of smell or taste.  My wife and daughter have had no symptoms at all.  My son is still not 100% but he's getting better daily.  It's notable how long this bugger can linger but he hasn't had any fever for many days and is eating pretty normally, just has fatigue.   I've been taking him on walks the last couple days to get him out of the house and moving around a bit.  I see other's have also reported elevated resting heart rate from covid19 (as well as a decline in heart rate variability).

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Gordo, I am glad your son has recovered.  I highly doubt it's Covid-19, as regardless of the narrative from the teachers' unions, kids are much less likely to be symptomatic than adults (or to be spreaders), based on statements from the American Academy of Pediatricians and the French study I posted above. More likely either foodborne illness or something the rest of you have immunity to.  As to the resting heart rate, it goes up with any stress, including illness.  Fitbit even has a watch face that alerts you about impending illness based on raising resting heart rate (it generally goes up a day or two before you feel symptoms).  Sadly, mine goes up by 2-3 beats every time I have a couple of glasses of wine -- I went out to dinner last night and this morning it had gone from 49 (the last week and a half or so) to 51.

In Covid-19 and lockdown related news:

U.S. economy plunges at titanic 32.9% rate in 2nd quarter and points to drawn-out recovery

This of course is in the middle of the "free money for all" the Democrats are pushing and Trump is trying to outdo.
---


And for more good news about the Western liberal democracies, and the confluence of wokeness and Covid-19 hysteria, here are the musings of the venerable John Gray:
 

 

 

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Once an out of control epicenter, Italy now offers lessons for keeping the virus in check

When the virus erupted in the West, Italy was the nightmarish epicenter, a place to avoid at all costs and a shorthand in the United States and much of Europe for uncontrolled contagion.

Fast forward a few months, and the United States has suffered tens of thousands more deaths than any country in the world. European states that once looked smugly at Italy are facing new flare-ups. 

And Italy? Its hospitals are basically empty of Covid-19 patients. Daily deaths attributed to the virus in Lombardy, the region that bore the brunt of the pandemic, hover around zero. The number of new daily cases has plummeted to “one of the lowest in Europe and the world,” said Giovanni Rezza, director of the infective illness department at the National Institute of Health. 

How Italy has gone from being a global pariah to a model — however imperfect — of viral containment holds fresh lessons for the rest of the world, including the United States.

Italy has consolidated, or at least maintained, the rewards of a tough nationwide lockdown through a mix of vigilance and painfully gained medical expertise.

  • Its government has been guided by scientific and technical committees.

  • The country set aside economic pressures and only began easing its exceptionally tight lockdown based on case counts.

  • Italy continues to limit travel from elsewhere.

  • Local doctors, hospitals and health officials collect more than 20 indicators on the virus daily and send them to regional authorities, who then forward them to the National Institute of Health.

The result is a weekly X-ray of the country’s health upon which policy decisions are based. That is a long way from the state of panic, and near collapse, that hit Italy in March.

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Review
 
Life Sci
 
  •  
  •  
  •  
. 2020 Aug 1;254:117808.
 doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2020.117808.Epub 2020 May 15.

Lungs as target of COVID-19 infection: Protective common molecular mechanisms of vitamin D and melatonin as a new potential synergistic treatment

Affiliations expand
Free PMC article
Full-text linksCite

Abstract

COVID-19 pandemic has a high mortality rate and is affecting practically the entire world population. The leading cause of death is severe acute respiratory syndrome as a consequence of exacerbated inflammatory response accompanied by uncontrolled oxidative stress as well as the inflammatory reaction at the lung level. Until now, there is not a specific and definitive treatment for this pathology that worries the world population, especially the older adults who constitute the main risk group. In this context, it results in a particular interest in the evaluation of the efficacy of existing pharmacological agents that may be used for overcoming or attenuating the severity of this pulmonary complication that has ended the lives of many people worldwide. Vitamin D and melatonin could be good options for achieving this aim, taking into account that they have many shared underlying mechanisms that are able to modulate and control the immune adequately and oxidative response against COVID-19 infection, possibly even through a synergistic interaction. The renin-angiotensin system exaltation with consequent inflammatory response has a leading role in the physiopathology of COVID-19 infection; and it may be down-regulated by vitamin D and melatonin in many organs. Therefore, it is also essential to analyze this potential therapeutic association and their relation with RAS as part of this new approach

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On 7/31/2020 at 5:20 PM, Ron Put said:

 kids are much less likely to be symptomatic than adults (or to be spreaders), based on statements from the American Academy of Pediatricians and the French study I posted above

I thought the same, but not sure anymore that "less likely" is all the reassuring.  My wife was telling me about this recently reported incident:

https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2020-07-31/georgia-camp-with-covid-19-outbreak-didnt-require-masks

  • Campers ranged in age from 6 to 19, and many of the staffers were teenagers. Cabins had between 16 to 26 people. 
  • Test results were available for 344 people and 260 of them — about three-quarters — were positive.
  • The percentage of campers infected was higher among younger kids than older kids, the report found. It also was higher in kids who were at the camp for longer periods of time.
  • Officials recorded information about symptoms for only 136 kids. Of those, 100 reported symptoms — mostly fever, headache and sore throat.

There is little risk of death (in fact less risk than from the flu) for kids under 20, but the illness can still be quite difficult (of course the regular flu can be real bad too).  I'm pretty sure my son had Covid-19, he has never been that sick before in his life, its the high fever and chills plus fatigue that just goes on and on that seem like the telltale signs.  That said, he had no known contact with an infected person, he did however spend a day with a friend a couple days before falling ill, he was driving with this friend's family so obviously in a close confined space, that's the only thing I can think of but no one in that family reported being sick and they only did outdoor activities...  I'll try to get him antibody tested this week since his symptoms started 2 weeks ago.

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Both were quite engaging thanks! The first one is most amazing as an example of how we humans can be so damn cold blooded! All the fuss about our pets and yet not much concern when we gobble down all those meats and eggs etc. we are quite adept at compartmentalism!! Maybe, just maybe the appeal to our self interest will push us in the direction we need to go! Bill does that so neatly!

Edited by Mike41

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Anxiety and depression in COVID-19 survivors: role of inflammatory and clinical predictors
Mario Gennaro Mazza, Rebecca De Lorenzo, Caterina Conte, Sara Poletti, ... Francesco Benedetti
In Press, Journal Pre-proof, Available online 30 July 2020
Abstract
Infection-triggered perturbation of the immune system could induce psychopathology, and psychiatric sequelae were observed after previous coronavirus outbreaks. The spreading of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic could be associated with psychiatric implications. We investigated the psychopathological impact of COVID-19 in survivors, also considering the effect of clinical and inflammatory predictors.
We screened for psychiatric symptoms 402 adults surviving COVID-19 (265male,meanage58), at one month follow-up after hospital treatment. A clinical interview and a battery of self-report questionnaires were used to investigate post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, insomnia, and obsessive-compulsive (OC) symptomatology. We collected sociodemographic information, clinical data, baseline inflammatory markers and follow-up oxygen saturation levels.
A significant proportion of patients self-rated in the psychopathological range: 28% for PTSD, 31% for depression, 42% for anxiety, 20% for OC symptoms, and 40% for insomnia. Overall, 56% scored in the pathological range in at least one clinical dimension. Despite significantly lower levels of baseline inflammatory markers, females suffered more for both anxiety and depression. Patients with a positive previous psychiatric diagnosis showed increased scores on most psychopathological measures, with similar baseline inflammation. Baseline systemic immune-inflammation index (SII), which reflects the immune response and systemic inflammation based on peripheral lymphocyte, neutrophil and platelet counts, positively associated with scores of depression and anxiety at follow-up.
PTSD, major depression, and anxiety, are all high-burden non-communicable conditions associated with years of life lived with disability. Considering the alarming impact of COVID-19 infection on mental health, the current insights on inflammation in psychiatry, and the present obervation of worse inflammation leading to worse depression, we recommend to assess psychopathology of COVID-19 survivors and to deepen research on inflammatory biomarkers, in order to diagnose and treat emergent psychiatric conditions.

Keywords
COVID-19, COVID-19 survivors, depression, anxiety, PTSD, insomnia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, mental health, psychopathology, inflammation

>>>>“After three weeks of treatments, I was healing from COVID, at home, had no fever, and just a little cough. But sometimes at night, my breath could go away all of a sudden, making me feel as if I was to die. I knew what it was because I had suffered from panic attacks in the past. I stayed there out on the balcony, for hours, trying to put fresh air into my lungs. It was terrible. Panic made me suffer more than COVID.”
-- A patient’s report at follow-up

>>>>>>>>>>>.
“After three weeks of treatments, I was healing from COVID, at home, had no fever, and just a little cough. But sometimes at night, my breath could go away all of a sudden, making me feel as if I was to die. I knew what it was because I had suffered from panic attacks in the past. I stayed there out on the balcony, for hours, trying to put fresh air into my lungs. It was terrible. Panic made me suffer more than COVID.”
-- A patient’s report at follow-up

Edited by AlPater

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On 8/2/2020 at 4:52 PM, Gordo said:

I thought the same, but not sure anymore that "less likely" is all the reassuring.  My wife was telling me about this recently reported incident:

I wouldn't put too much stock in anecdotal media headlines 🙂  Here is another study I hadn't seen before:

COVID-19 in Children and the Dynamics of Infection in Families

 

----

On another note, Sweden is pretty much the only major economy in the West which is still above water.  Of course, there is pressure, as the rest of its trading partners are tanking, but still:

Sweden had one of the most relaxed COVID-19 lockdowns in the world. There's growing evidence that it helped it weather 2020's economic storm better than anywhere else.

And Swedish companies appear to be winners, too:

Swedish companies reap benefits of country’s Covid-19 approach

“I have never seen such a high proportion of companies coming in with better profits than expected. It’s almost every company,” said Esbjorn Lundevall, chief equity strategist at lender SEB."

Edited by Ron Put

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Masks mandates have major impact, study finds

if the U.S. had introduced a uniform national mask mandate for employees of public-facing businesses on April 1, the number of deaths in the U.S. would likely have been 40 percent lower on June 1.

"Controlling for behavior, information variables, confounding factors—the mask mandates are critical to the decline in deaths. No matter how we look at the data, that result is there."

Specifically, after accounting for those circumstances, the researchers estimated that mask mandates would have produced a 40 percent reduction in deaths, nationally.

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4 hours ago, corybroo said:

"The Google data included mobility measures showing the prevalence of visits to public transit, grocery stores, other retail establishments, and workplaces. Ultimately—again based on the timing of changes in mobility patterns in relation to state-level stay-at-home directives—the researchers concluded that adherence to government mandates accounts for about half of the observed reductions in travel."

Yeah, great data and methodology.... Right up there with the test of the guy shouting through a cardboard box in a lab and the papers predicting 2.2 million dead in the US.  But it gets headlines because it toes the political line.

Of course, Belarus had no masks and no lockdown yet has a lower mortality rate than even the Scandinavian countries (BTW, Finland reports less than 1% mask use).  Utah and Tennesee have no mask requirement and have among the lowest death rates in the US. Texas was late to the mask party and implementation is still random, and the state had a rather sporadic lockdown, yet it has less dead from Covid-19 to date than flu deaths from the 2017-18 season, and a fraction of the NY's deaths. Same for Florida, with its huge vulnerable population.  If we really look at the numbers, the harder the lockdown and the mask requirements, the more deaths (I am being only partially facetious).

 

Here is a real study, one of many on which the CDC and the WTO relied on, until being bullied into submission by the left.

N95 Respirators vs Medical Masks for Preventing Influenza Among Health Care Personnel: A Randomized Clinical Trial

Conclusions and relevance: Among outpatient health care personnel, N95 respirators vs medical masks as worn by participants in this trial resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza.

 

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1 hour ago, Ron Put said:

"N95 Respirators vs Medical Masks for Preventing Influenza Among Health Care Personnel..."

Ron, I posted that study link and excerpt previously here.

The study only looked at the comparative effectiveness of N95 respirators vs medical masks, in the health care context described,  and provided evidence that they were both equally effective.

Quote

In this pragmatic, cluster randomized trial that involved multiple outpatient sites at 7 health care delivery systems across a wide geographic area over 4 seasons of peak viral respiratory illness, there was no significant difference between the effectiveness of N95 respirators and medical masks in preventing laboratory-confirmed influenza among participants routinely exposed to respiratory illnesses in the workplace. In addition, there were no significant differences between N95 respirators and medical masks in the rates of acute respiratory illness, laboratory-detected respiratory infections, laboratory-confirmed respiratory illness, and influenzalike illness among participants. A sensitivity analysis suggested that the primary analysis reported was fairly robust to the missing outcome data with quantitative outcomes varying by less than 5%.

This supports the finding that neither N95 respirators nor medical masks were more effective in preventing laboratory-confirmed influenza or other viral respiratory infection or illness among participants when worn in a fashion consistent with current US clinical practice. 

Respiratory viruses are primarily transmitted by large droplets. Because a fraction of respiratory viruses may be transmitted by aerosol, N95 respirators have been presumed to provide better protection than medical masks against viral respiratory infections in health care settings.2

However, definitive evidence of greater clinical effectiveness of N95 respirators is lacking. A well-designed trial6 found the effectiveness of medical masks to be noninferior to N95 respirators, but the trial was stopped prematurely and was limited by small sample size.

Two additional studies3,4   (and a pooled analysis12)concluded that N95 respirators may be more effective than medical masks; however, these studies were limited by uncertain clinical significance of end points.24

The current study was undertaken because of remaining uncertainty based on previous studies, which made it challenging for infection control clinicians to effectively implement respiratory protection programs in health care settings.

 

 

Edited by Sibiriak

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What the huge COVID-19 testing undercount in the US means

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other institutions recently published a study which estimated that the true number of people infected by COVID-19 could be six to 24 times higher than the number of confirmed cases. 

we know the cases and deaths are undercounted due to lack of testing. Particularly at the beginning of the pandemic, only those with significant illness were tested and there were shortages and problems with the test.

We also know that there is a significant amount of asymptomatic spread that isn't captured in those testing numbers, particularly in places that still lack access to widespread testing.

when there are mild or asymptomatic cases and people don't know that they're sick, then that's contributing to spread. If not identified, that keeps us in this situation even longer where we're not containing the spread.

For context, the reproductive number of the flu is about 1.3 and SARS-CoV-2 is between 2 and 3, meaning it's a highly contagious disease. So even at the higher end of the estimates that we expect the true number of cases to be, the majority of the country remains susceptible to the virus. Less than 5% of the U.S. population has been infected.

universal mask wearing, frequent hand-washing and maintaining physical distancing. These things work.

There needs to be increased, accurate and rapid testing without a long lag time for results so people get results before there may be additional unintentional spread.

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COVID-19: Not all patients develop protective antibodies

Scientists from MedUni Vienna's Institute of Pathophysiology and Allergy Research discovered that only around 60% of patients who have had COVID-19 and recovered from it develop protective antibodies and, for the first time, they were able to show that some antibodies even assist the virus by augmenting it to the cells of the host.

The positive outcome is that we now have a test that can identify antibodies and show whether people who have already been infected have protective immunity or not.

certain immunocomplexes consisting of RBD and patient antibodies, have a higher binding rate to ACE2. This is a hitherto unknown mechanism that enables the virus to dock onto cells more easily.Potentially, this can make it even easier for the virus to infect cells. [Emphasis added]

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Two weeks of mandatory masks, but a record 725 new cases: why are Melbourne's COVID-19 numbers so stubbornly high?

Melburnians have now been wearing mandatory face coverings in public for two weeks. Yet Premier Daniel Andrews yesterday announced another grim milestone in Victoria's second wave of COVID-19 infections: 725 new cases, a record daily tally for any Australian state since the pandemic began.

proper, widespread use of masks by the public should have made a big dent in coronavirus numbers. So why hasn't there been a drop in cases?

Philip Russo, president of the Australasian College of Infection Prevention and Control, last week lamented the "really obvious disoedience" displayed by some people, and speculated masks may also have created a false sense of security among the wider public who may view masks as more effective than they truly are.

"far too many people" were going to work while sick, labelling this behaviour "the biggest driver of transmission" in the state.

What we are seeing now is actually infections from 5-10 days ago. And any public health interventions implemented now will take 5-10 days to show an effect.

We also know COVID-19 thrives in environments where it can quickly infect large numbers of people—and the recent uptick in cases has largely been driven by workplace transmission which occurred before the stage 4 restrictions came into effect.

During July's stage 3 lockdown, Melburnians were under the same restrictions as the original lockdown in March and April. Yet vehicle traffic was almost 20% higher than during the earlier lockdown

The persistently high numbers may also be partly explained by infected people transmitting the virus to their families, partners or housemates—something that's hard to avoid even in lockdown.

While it's frustrating that Victoria's numbers have not trended downwards, it's also true the state has successfully avoided the kind of exponential increase in cases seen in many other countries.

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An appeal for a new lockdown by the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota and the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.

Here’s How to Crush the Virus Until Vaccines Arrive

Why did the United States’ Covid-19 containment response fail, particularly compared with the successful results of so many nations in Asia, Europe and even our neighbor Canada?

Simply, we gave up on our lockdown efforts to control virus transmission well before the virus was under control. 

 While many countries are now experiencing modest flare-ups of the virus, their case loads are in the hundreds or low thousands of infections per day, not tens of thousands, and small enough that public health officials can largely control the spread.

In contrast, the United States reopened too quickly and is now experiencing around 50,000 or more new cases per day.

[If we aren’t willing to lockdown until the case rate is less than one per 100,000] millions more cases with many more deaths are likely before a vaccine might be available. In addition, the economic recovery will be much slower, with far more business failures and high unemployment for the next year or two. The path of the virus will determine the path of the economy. There won’t be a robust economic recovery until we get control of the virus.

[An example of a soft lockdown:]  Minnesota deemed 78 percent of its workers essential.

[A real lockdown combined with testing and tracing] will lead to a stronger, faster economic recovery, moving people from unemployment to work.

 

 

 

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