TWiV 659: Sloppy coronavirus immunity with Christian Drosten

September 3, 2020

Christian Drosten returns to TWiV to provide an update on the COVID-19 situation in Germany, and general thoughts on testing, immunity, vaccines, therapeutics, epidemiology, reopening schools, and what will happen this fall.

Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Rich Condit, and Brianne Barker

Guest: Christian Drosten

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Intro music is by Ronald Jenkees

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21 comments on “TWiV 659: Sloppy coronavirus immunity with Christian Drosten

  1. About cold noses (29:00) – Akiko Iwasaki has been banging the drums about temperature-dependent defense in airway epithelial cells since 2015 (about commom cold viruses) and there has been a few papers on it for Sars-Cov-2. Even here in Germany where masks are mandatory only indoors it will be very important to wear them outside in cold weather for this very reason.

  2. sarah adams Sep 3, 2020

    Mr. Rananiello,
    I am wondering if you feel any responsibility to provide the public with more factual information and why you would claim that President Trump’s administration has “always denied the existence of the problem(virus).? To me it subtracts from your credibility as a scientist when you and Mr. Dove and Dr. Griffin, continue to insert your political beliefs into your scientific discussions. I also feel your disdain for the public’s grave concerns regarding the damage to children’s education, mental health and the economy. It is clear you have been able to earn your living throughout the pandemic but you think others should willfully go into the depths of poverty to what end I don’t know. Can you explain why a virus that most critically affects the compromises and elderly should impact my ability to educate my children, pay my mortgage and let my children have their childhoods back?
    I sincerely do not understand your disdain that comes through your arrogance to believe you hold some sort of moral authority. Please help me understand this.

    • Verena Dec 17, 2020

      I very much agree.
      And I don‘t know if it is known that Mr Drosten refuses talking to his critics here in Germany.

    • Verena Dec 17, 2020

      I very much agree..

  3. Elise Leonard Sep 4, 2020

    Thanks for your wonderful TWiV shows. I’m a physics undergraduate turned child psychiatrist, which may explain my question- don’t laugh- but do you think children might transmit to adults less because they are SHORT?
    I would like to draw a simple trajectory diagram here 🙂

  4. Melissa Riley Sep 5, 2020

    Dear TWiV,
    RE: Your conversation with Christian Drosten~
    Please keep in mind that Bobby Brooke Herrera says that his E25Bio test works best with a simple nasal swab, not saliva.
    With gratitude and laughter for TWIV,
    Melissa Riley
    Contact Tracer

  5. Hubert Grünheidt Sep 5, 2020

    Hello TWiVers,

    in TWiV 659 – “Sloppy coronavirus immunity with Christian Drosten” there was one topic that it may be possible/good to translate the German podcast “Coronavirus update” to English.
    (I just HAD to repeat the “sloppy…” phrase – although what made me laugh the most was Drostens ‘ooch’-reaction when asked to be in TWiV once a month.)

    I tried it and the result is: Na, it’s not worth it to translate a conversation in interview style and then have that translation only in written form.

    But here is an upside: The NDR publishes the scripts of the podcasts (,podcastcoronavirus102.html) and the results of google translate are good enough to get what they talk about.

    You could use this to see if there are ideas/topics that fit into your podcast and that you want to discuss in your favourite language in TWiV.
    (Did I inadvertetly invent the language “TWiV”? It’s just a comma away…)

    Many, many thanks for your podast!


    P.S. Searching for the email address for feedback I saw “Koch Institute …” in the links for episode 659 and it gives me an itch. It is “Robert Koch Institut(e)” (RKI) after Robert Koch, the nemesis of Louis Pasteur.

  6. Jeffery J Biss Sep 6, 2020

    The prohibitions on reusable bags, containers, etc is driven by ignorance and need to end ASAP because single-use items are unsustainable. To see just how stupid those prohibitions are, consider that everyone wears reusable clothing that should be prohibited as well.

  7. Norman Bauman Sep 7, 2020

    Wouldn’t you know it, the SARS-CoV-2 plush microbes are not available till the end of September.
    Coronavirus COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2)

    DUE TO HIGH DEMAND: Your order for Coronavirus will ship by the end of September.

    Sorry, Rich.

  8. Knut Schünemann Sep 8, 2020

    Hello TWiVers..

    I’m just listening to this episode and as a german, I want to add some bits to Christian Drostens explanations:
    – We had just a “lockdown light”, but additions quite heavy-handed changes in laws, in fact a new kind of martial law in case of an “epidemiologische Notlage nationaler Tragweite”, so a nationwide epidemiological crisis.
    This includes loos of the sanctuary of our homes, the right to assemble, the right of free speech, the right of free travel.
    Furthermore, we saw preparations to extract infected children from their families, if a quarantine at home might not be feasible.
    – It’s not only that the elderly stay at home on their own free will, but in nursery homes there are often drastic quarantine measures, like restricting visits to 1-3 time weekly for ony an hour.
    Together with a loss of nurses (them returning to their home countries or staying in quarantine themselves) this results in a serious lack of care.
    In the last months, there have been several cases of inhabitants of nursery home admitted to intensive care not with covid-19, but with life-threatening dehydration, pneumonia, urinary infections, etc. in my family and those of collegues and friends alone.

    So in Germany, there are measures taken and we do pay a price for those, not just commercially..

    Best Regards,

    Knut Schünemann

  9. Ligia Pic-Aluas Sep 9, 2020

    Thank you Dr. Drosten for appearing again and for your clear answers to difficult questions.
    Unrelated to what was discussed
    Dr. Monica Ghandi is pushing this idea that mask wearing decreases the chance of severe illness because less virus reaches the site if infection ? I understand that a high viral load increases the risk of infection, as seen in HIV, HeoB etc
    but why would it increase severity of illness ?
    Is mild illness a good thing if protective immunity seems to be weaker in such cases ?
    Can Covid 19 colonize so to speak and not infect some people ?
    Ligia Pic, M.D.
    Infectious Diseases
    Kaiser Permanente

  10. Kerstin Habermann Dec 16, 2020

    Why don’t you even ask him this:
    1) In Germany someone has offered to pay Mr. Drosten € 200,000 (The amount is increasing) if he can prove the isolation of a coronavirus. He hasn’t done that until today.
    On Twitter, Prof. Streeck tried to help Mr. Drosten. Prof. Streeck announced that he had an isolate. Then the money was offered to him: Prof. Streeck did not answer, nor did Mr. Drosten.
    2) Several experts offered Mr Drosten the technical discussion. He evades everything.
    3) Meanwhile, some lawyers are preparing a lawsuit against him in the USA with lawyers also in the US.
    4) German television does not listen to critics and even slanders them. Unpleasant passages are cut out of talkshows.

    • Verena Palm Dec 17, 2020

      I would love to hear about that as well.

      Greetings from Germany.

    • Ergamon Dec 19, 2020

      Of course, as a professional Scientist you reply to just someone who offers you money….
      Mhhh… i wunder why he didn’t do it….

  11. Inge Anderje Dec 16, 2020

    Ich denke ,das ist ein zusammen Schnitt …….
    .das ist nicht authentisch

  12. Verena Palm Dec 17, 2020

    If Christian Drosten is invited again it would be great to hear his opinion on PCR Tests.

    How many cycles should it run?
    As our entire economy depends on the Covid-19 case numbers, this worries many of us Germans.

    • Jim Brunner Apr 9, 2021

      Just listen to the video and you here it. 25-30 cycles.

  13. Manfred Dec 7, 2021

    Racaniyelling! LOL