Ryan writes:

Dear Twiv have you seen this Daily Mail articles on Wakefield? – Recently he just got called out for living a luxurious lifestyle




This is at a time when Wakefield has also been accused of trying to influence the 2020 elections here in the USA by setting up superpac and lobbying offices at state capitals and Washington D.C. to prevent California Vaccine laws SB276 and SB277  from going nationwide in the USA. 

Carol writes:

Dear Twiv,

 if you are wondering why people distrust modern medicine here are two articles



The Articles are about the fallout from the opioid abuse scandal. There have been protests and  lawsuits around the country over how doctors and pharmacists have failed to stop the opioid abuse around the nation. I do not know if this opioid scandal directly caused voters to support the Anti-Vax Movement though, but we have one factor. 

Suellen writes:

Loved the discussion of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in TWIV 567! As a horse owner, let me add a few facts.

1. Responsible horse owners vaccinate at least once a year for EEE (as well as for West Nile). Here in Georgia, as across most of the South, we vaccinate our horses twice a year, spring and fall, because we have a longer mosquito season. 

2. Brianne is right, Dickson was maybe a bit right: New Jersey is an important horse state not just because of racing, but because of all the sport horses in the state. As Brianne mentioned, the US Equestrian Team is based at Gladstone, and since an Olympic-level horse is worth upwards of half a million dollars, you can bet they get vaccinated regularly. 

3. I was really glad to hear that mammals are a dead end host for EEE, because I’ve actually had people ask me if they can get EEE from a horse. I can now point them to the discussion on TWIV as proof that, NO, you can’t get EEE from your horse even if your horse isn’t vaccinated. 

4. Horses are a herd animal, so one horse by itself can become stressed or, yes, depressed. So kudos to Sweden for requiring horse owners to have at least two! (BTW, a friend tells me they also require guinea pig owners to have at least two, for the same reason.)

5. Yes, horses get depressed, especially when they are not well. I realize it’s hard for non-horse people to imagine this, but horses do express emotion. A depressed horse will hang its head, usually face a corner of the pasture or stall, and may stop eating. And a good horse owner can tell when his or her horse is depressed!

On a non-horsey note, I really appreciated both Brianne’s and Rich’s non-technical explanations of the budding process in HIV, and of what the paper on HIV was all about. For those of us who enjoy the show but don’t have PhDs in virology, it’s much easier to follow the technical details of the paper when we have that 30,000 foot view of what the paper is about. 

And sorry to be so long-winded, but I don’t write often! Wanted to add one more thing . . . a book I read recently that was an enormous help to me in understanding the basic pieces of the immune system. I love your Immune podcast, but it’s often way over my head. Now I have at least some basic knowledge that I hope will help me follow the discussions. The book is “An Elegant Defense” by Matt Richter, and although it tended to give a bit too much detail on the patients he followed, it also managed to give a really excellent overview of how the immune system works, so I recommend it to immune system newbies like me.

Keep up the great work! Love the show, don’t stop discussing the weather and don’t change the titles! I love the puns! Scientists can be clever LOL.

Bill writes:

There may be some use for this site to make assorted capsids, molecules etc

Matthew writes:

Dear Vincent & the gang,

I have some slides on the ‘Founding Fathers of Virology’ that I use in my teaching. Currently I go through Ivanovsky, Beijerinck, Bang, Ellerman, Rous, Twort, d’Herelle, Shope and Bittner (No Racaniello yet… but it’s a posthumous thing… so you’ll have to wait). 

I wondered if there was anyone that should be on this list, but isn’t, or maybe should be replaced… in your esteemed judgement? Also, I’d love to follow up this slide with a few on the ‘Diva Daughters of Virology’ (or something like that) to highlight some of the amazing women virologists there are out there now, and wondered if you could each suggest a few… in addition to Kathy and Brianne of course.

Many thanks,


Senior Lecturer in Microbiology

Joseph Banks laboratories, School of Life Sciences, 

University of Lincoln, Lincoln, Lincolnshire,

United Kingdom

Theodore writes:

Greetings from sunny Florida.

This recently published open access article in Science, provides another strong reason to have all children vaccinated for measles.

Thank you all for your continued dedication to these fabulous podcasts.

Ted Splaver, College of Dental Medicine, NOVA Southeastern University, Davie, Florida

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

Charles Darwin