Tomorrow! SARS-CoV-2 Duke Research Symposium – Check our website for details
When it comes to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, little is known yet about the body’s immune response to an infection. Understanding the level of viral immunity in survivors of Covid-19 will prove key in making decisions about how and when to lift restrictions.
What clinicians need to know about cutaneous manifestations of COVID-19
CDC report details how a Solano County, Calif., patient exposed 121 hospital staff, kicking off one of first-known cases of workplace transmission in the country [Related Study]
Sweden’s relatively relaxed approach to controlling the spread of the coronavirus has come under fire in international media and from many locals in the capital Stockholm, where more than half the country’s deaths have been recorded. Now, 22 researchers have publicly criticized the strategy and called on politicians to make changes.
In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state, county, and municipal authorities report cases and deaths in which the presence of the novel coronavirus is confirmed in a laboratory test. However, many people who died and had COVID-19 symptoms – at home, in a nursing home, or a long-term care facility – are not being tested.
For the billions of people now living under some form of stay-at-home or lockdown orders, experts from the World Health Organization have new guidance: We should be ready to “change our behaviors for the foreseeable future,” they say, as the agency updates its advice on when to lift COVID-19 lockdown orders.
Sociologists have suggested that some social distancing methods, like avoiding hugs and handshakes, could persist beyond the end of the pandemic, but the paper published Tuesday in the journal Science notes that even after the spread of the virus appears to wane, a resurgence in contagion could be possible as late as 2024. [Related Study]
Governments around the world must triangulate the health of their citizens, the freedoms of their population, and economic constraints. Could schools be reopened? Restaurants? Bars? Can people go back to their offices?
Most of the optimistic ideas about what to do about SARS-CoV-2 involve engineering the virus’s extinction. We could ramp up testing and isolate anyone who has been in contact with an infected individual. We could carefully manage infections to build up herd immunity without exceeding our hospital capacity. Or, in an ideal world, we could develop herd immunity using an effective vaccine. [Related Study]
n early April, about four months after a new, highly infectious coronavirus was first identified in China, an international group of scientists reported encouraging results from a study of an experimental drug for treating the viral disease known as COVID-19.
Clinicians around the world are seeing evidence that suggests the virus also may be causing heart inflammation, acute kidney disease, neurological malfunction, blood clots, intestinal damage and liver problems. That development has complicated treatment for the most severe cases of covid-19, the illness caused by the virus, and makes the course of recovery less certain, they said.
Official Reporting for April 15, 2020
|WHO SITREP #85||ECDC | Country Data||Johns Hopkins|
Total deaths: 21,942
Travel Related: 6,515
Close Contact: 13,341
Under Investigation: 534,993
Total Cases: 554,849
California: California sees single-day high in COVID-19 deaths – Mercury News
Virginia: Half Of Virginia’s Coronavirus Outbreaks Are In Long-Term Care Facilities – NPR
Boston, Massachusetts: Testing Reveals ‘Stunning’ Asymptomatic Coronavirus Spread Among Boston’s Homeless – WBUR
Georgia: Health officials can’t track COVID-19 spread in Middle Georgia – The Telegraph
Hawaii: Volunteers Needed for the Medical Reserve Corps – KHON
Ecuador: As Bodies Accumulate, So Do Fears of a High Coronavirus Toll in Ecuador – NYT
Iran: Virus deaths nearly double reported figures – AP
Sweden: 22 Scientists Say Coronavirus Strategy Has Failed As Deaths Top 1,000 – Forbes
Algeria Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, and South Africa have reported increased cases and deaths. Six of the countries with high case loads have high case-fatality rates, ranging from Algeria at 15% to Niger at 2.7%. Most countries are experiencing local transmission with the virus spreading from country capitals to rural areas. The WHO said rigorous efforts are needed to control the situation, such as stepped-up surveillance and other preparedness actions. – CIDRAP
‘Starve or get sick’: Africa’s COVID-19 lockdown dilemma – Gulf News
Nigeria: 373 confirmed cases, 99 discharged, 11 deaths recorded – Vanguard
Science and Tech
As Covid-19 steamrolls across international boundaries, public health officials are paying close attention to countries that are flattening the curve, slowing the spread of infection. Can other countries emulate their success? Top of mind has been whether authoritarian regimes have an edge over democracies, because they can mandate top-down measures like lockdowns and digital tracking of infected people’s movements and contacts.
For many who have already tested positive, home stays are the best option to avoid an already massively overtaxed hospital system in many areas and to avoid further infecting others. The question, then, is how doctors and nurses can continue to provide treatment remotely with the pronounced limitations of telemedicine.
Coronavirus was a test, and many of the world’s most advanced nations have all too visibly failed. What can we do better?
Researchers María Coca and Juan José López-Moya from the Spanish Research Council (CSIC) at the Centre for Research in Agricultural Genomics (CRAG) are using their expertise in plant biotechnology and virology to produce SARS-CoV-2 antigens to be used in vaccine development. The researchers will experiment with different expression systems from plants and have formed a team including an immunologist expert in coronavirus.
The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) will pump approximately $180,000 into a new partnership with DiaSorin, Inc. to create a clinical lab test capable of identifying people infected with and recovered from the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
Pre-Pub (not yet peer reviewed, should not be regarded as conclusive)
Spraying streets and inside buildings might calm a worried public, but it’s too early to know whether such efforts reduce transmission.
Recent commentaries on optimizing respiratory protection against the COVID-19 virus and on modes of transmission that were written by Lisa M. Brosseau, ScD, and Margaret Sietsema, PhD, or by Dr. Brosseau alone. Select the title to go to the full commentary.
In a study today in Emerging Infectious Diseases, Swiss and German researchers found that alcohol-based hand sanitizers recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) are effective in killing the novel coronavirus.