Daniel Griffin provides a clinical report on COVID-19, Kathleen Crowley explains the role of Environmental Health & Safety departments, update on SARS-CoV-2 transmission in farmed mink, and the presence of pre-existing antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in unexposed individuals.
Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Dickson Despommier, Alan Dove, Rich Condit, and Brianne Barker
Guests: Daniel Griffin and Kathleen A. Crowley
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Download TWiV 681 (107 MB .mp3, 179 min)
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Links for this episode
- Pfizer vaccine efficacy (Pfizer) 1:45:38
- Pfizer vaccine (Stat) 1:49:13
- Distribution of Pfizer vaccine (NY Times)
- LSTMH vaccine tracker 1:54:13
- SARS-CoV-2 humans to mink and back in Netherlands (Science) 1:56:50
- SARS-CoV-2 mink isolates in Denmark (pdf) 2:05:09
- Preexisting antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in humans (Science) 2:22:29
- Letters read on TWiV 681 36:53, 2:51:11
- Timestamps by Jolene. Thanks!
Weekly Science Picks 2:33:04
Dickson – OSIRIS-REx | NASA
Brianne – Virtual Science Museum Tours
Alan – Ring Fit Adventure
Rich – BUGSS Baltimore Underground Science Space
Vincent – Trilobite glassworks
Gina and Joe – COVID Fan Tutte
Intro music is by Ronald Jenkees
Send your virology questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Regarding the counting of COVID19 deaths vs other causes, here’s a thought – If a car wreck victim being rushed to a hospital is diverted to a hospital further away because the nearby hospital has been flooded with COVID patients and has no room, and they die enroute or because of delayed treatment, doesn’t that sound like dying “because” of COVID if not directly from it? If someone can die of respiratory or organ failure “caused” by COVID then I think the other consequences of poor “flood control” of infections should also count as deaths because of COVID. The undercount is bigger than you might think.
Dr. Fauci needs to show the data on the Mink risk.
This is a valid concern in an environment where people are trying to dampen public anxiety wrt the vaccines.
This quote from Dr. Fauci in the Independent…on Friday…
“When you look at the binding sites [on the spike protein] … it does not appear at this point that the mutation that has been identified in the minks is going to have an impact on vaccines and the effect of vaccine-induced immune response,” he said in a discussion broadcast by the Chatham House think-tank.
But, he added, chiming with early warnings cited by the Danish PM that the new strain could weaken humans’ antibody response: “It might have an impact on a certain [number] of the monoclonal antibodies that are developed against the virus – we don’t know that yet.”…
These will all have to be tested. Given the risk… I don’t understand why we aren’t being more careful around these spillovers not only with Mink but Deer Mice (as was brought up in this episode and TWiV 668: Mice, bats, and coronaviruses with Tony Schountz.) Each one of these events is a novel universe for potentially disastrous selection of new strains. These new strains could be less responsive to the expensive vaccines and therapies in development now for SARs CoV2.
Back in 1966 warning labels appear on products that had nicotine in them as being hazard’s to your health. One would figure that it doom the tobacco industries. That within a year people would stopped using tobacco and that would be that. This year Illinois has made smoking pot legal. Guess it is what you smoke causes lung cancer and smoking weed is good for you. Really!
Drinking of alcohol has been with us for eons and its effects are widely known, yet people done stupid things when they become drunk. One is drinking and driving or drinking and riding a horse, skating on a skate board, even drinking drunk and just walking. Yet over these centuries one would think people would learn. Really!
The drink of beer and wine was to replace drinking out of the local river because it would make you sick. That somehow boil water to beer did not get you sick and wine held power to also keep you from dying. Today turning on a tap will bring you clean and healthy water. Many of today’s soda drinks are mostly water and sugar people still drink soda with high content of sugar in them while knowing that sugar is not good for them in those amounts. Being overweight is a real killer, but we still drink soda.
This form of plague has been around since January and unless you were just hatch from a chicken egg everyone is aware of the danger this COVID-19 can do to one’s health, even very healthy people can die from this disease. Getting to the stage of being hospital sick means you’re in real trouble, that your body even when you over it will appear sluggish for months on end. It isn’t your common flu. Yet people do not mask and most of the current dead did not mask, or were in contact with others who did not mask. If I heard right that once your infected your able to spread this virus for the next 40 days. Yet people do not mask.
If you want to fight those who do not care about others, you fight them on their level.
A friend when he sees a person without a mask walks up to that person telling him/she he spent 2 months in the hospital with COVID-19 and he is possible still a spreader. That since they care not about others that he cares not about them. He whips off his masked and coughs three times.
Chicago will not have Thanksgiving this year because of this virus.
I’ve read that one of the first symptoms is the loss of the sense of smell, at about 3.4 days from infection. Therefore, wouldn’t a good test that everyone could perform be to check your sense of smell every day, even multiple times per day? Then, if one’s sense of smell diminishes, he or she could self-quarantine as peak shedding wouldn’t start until about day 4 from that initial symptom experience?
Real tests could then be performed to determine whether the person has Covid-19 or not.
Please tell Dickson I caught his Bye Bye Birdie reference lol! What’s the matter with kids today?
Hi Twivers. Still following and sincerely thanking you from México for your continuous effort in disseminating solid SARS CoV2 info. Related to podcast 681 and specifically to the lack of evidence of cross reactive immune response to SARS CoV2 and other coronavirus in the elderly, the possibility exists of this population was never exposed to the viruses that today’s young populations are exposed. In other words, it is possible that humans have been exposed to changing viral environments over time depending of changes of population densities, migrations, behaviors, habitats, etc. And therefore you would not expect the same immune response repertoire in successive generations. Thanks again.