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Sun May 31, 2020, 03:07 PM

Updated - Reuters: New coronavirus losing potency, top Italian doctor says

Last edited Tue Jun 2, 2020, 12:01 PM - Edit history (2)

Updated/ disputed from WHO (Washington Post):
https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/experts-dispute-reports-coronavirus-is-becoming-less-lethal/2020/06/01/8f8ace7c-a432-11ea-b619-3f9133bbb482_story.html?utm_campaign=wp_post_most&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&wpisrc=nl_most

ROME (Reuters) - The new coronavirus is losing its potency and has become much less lethal, a senior Italian doctor said on Sunday.

“In reality, the virus clinically no longer exists in Italy,” said Alberto Zangrillo, the head of the San Raffaele Hospital in Milan in the northern region of Lombardy, which has borne the brunt of Italy’s coronavirus contagion.

“The swabs that were performed over the last 10 days showed a viral load in quantitative terms that was absolutely infinitesimal compared to the ones carried out a month or two months ago,” he told RAI television.

Italy has the third highest death toll in the world from COVID-19, with 33,415 people dying since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21. It has the sixth highest global tally of cases at 233,019.


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-italy-virus-idUSKBN2370OQ?utm_campaign=trueAnthem%3A+Trending+Content&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=facebook&fbclid=IwAR2RIvPaynd2BkBZ3ipJXScSCaLDewLN2RFIUaSNcI2rsi7J_LrHZ_xrdkc

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Reply Updated - Reuters: New coronavirus losing potency, top Italian doctor says (Original post)
phylny May 2020 OP
Evergreen Emerald May 2020 #1
jpak May 2020 #2
phylny May 2020 #6
uponit7771 May 2020 #3
Blue_true May 2020 #41
uponit7771 May 2020 #48
RAB910 May 2020 #4
phylny May 2020 #5
stopdiggin May 2020 #7
phylny May 2020 #11
LisaL May 2020 #27
phylny May 2020 #30
stopdiggin May 2020 #32
phylny May 2020 #33
stopdiggin May 2020 #34
Blue_true May 2020 #42
LeftInTX Jun 2020 #54
stopdiggin Jun 2020 #62
Demovictory9 May 2020 #8
Mariana May 2020 #12
phylny May 2020 #17
BannonsLiver May 2020 #18
Takket May 2020 #9
phylny May 2020 #10
BannonsLiver May 2020 #19
phylny May 2020 #20
BannonsLiver May 2020 #22
phylny May 2020 #23
Tree-Hugger Jun 2020 #65
Blue_true May 2020 #43
Rstrstx May 2020 #13
phylny May 2020 #15
Blue_true May 2020 #45
phylny Jun 2020 #55
Rstrstx Jun 2020 #59
Rstrstx Jun 2020 #61
phylny Jun 2020 #64
Rstrstx Jun 2020 #66
Blue_true May 2020 #44
Ace Rothstein May 2020 #14
phylny May 2020 #24
Raven123 May 2020 #16
phylny May 2020 #21
BGBD May 2020 #25
phylny May 2020 #26
Meowmee Jun 2020 #58
LisaL May 2020 #28
Blue_true May 2020 #46
BGBD May 2020 #51
coti May 2020 #29
phylny May 2020 #31
spinbaby May 2020 #35
phylny May 2020 #38
uponit7771 May 2020 #40
cwydro May 2020 #36
phylny May 2020 #37
StarryNite May 2020 #39
roamer65 May 2020 #47
phylny May 2020 #49
roamer65 Jun 2020 #52
LisaL May 2020 #50
OhioChick Jun 2020 #53
phylny Jun 2020 #56
greyl Jun 2020 #57
Raine Jun 2020 #60
NickB79 Jun 2020 #63
McCamy Taylor Jun 2020 #67
phylny Jun 2020 #68
backscatter712 Jun 2020 #69
Doremus Jun 2020 #70

Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:18 PM

1. i hope this is valid

I am so ready for this nightmare to be over.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:25 PM

2. But it's still killing Americans pretty well

I'll believe it when it's published in a peer reviewed journal.

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Response to jpak (Reply #2)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:40 PM

6. I don't disagree.

I found the article interesting.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:31 PM

3. Great if true really really skeptical, this doctor is talking about viral load not a mutated virus

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #3)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:02 PM

41. Lots of people in Italy appear to be wearing mask in public.

I am really surprised that a Doctor would not realize that impacts the viral loads that a person takes in.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #41)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:49 PM

48. This too, where I'm at around 50% of the people are wearing masks and that's pretty good

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:32 PM

4. Today there were 75 dead Italians who might argue differently

if they were not dead

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Response to RAB910 (Reply #4)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:39 PM

5. Could be.

Could also be that those patients have been battling for awhile.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:47 PM

7. this a complete load of crap

The virus is the same structure as the contagion that tore through Italy and totally decimated their entire health care system. It's the same virus. It's every bit as lethal today as it was back then.

Please sit down.
--- --- --- ---

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Response to stopdiggin (Reply #7)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:57 PM

11. What do you think this doctor's motivation is?

Do you feel he is lying?

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Response to phylny (Reply #11)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:23 PM

27. Well he is quoted as suggesting they need to open the country.

That alone could be motivation enough to even convince himself that the virus is less potent. He is claiming that based on the viral load from swabs.
I am not sure that less viral load from the swabs he got would suggest that the virus is different or less potent.

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Response to LisaL (Reply #27)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:35 PM

30. Perhaps. Maybe the other doctor quoted is as well.

The article does read that the government is still being cautious.

“The government urged caution, saying it was far too soon to claim victory.“

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Response to phylny (Reply #11)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:38 PM

32. don't care

show me where the "Italian" virus has mutated into a less infectious (or less lethal) form of SARS-Cov2. It hasn't? Then STFU!

Can you tell me what the "motivation" is of the man who is pushing his hydroxycloroquine cure? Again, don't care! Physicians can be as careless, arrogant and self-promoting as all the rest of the species (sometimes more so). What I do care about is .. whatever his motivation, his bulls**t and bluster helped to kill a lot of people. And there were lots of "interesting articles" written about this man and his "findings" too .. along with people drinking fish tank cleaner.

And thankfully, a lot of other people that were willing to say, "Hey WAIT a minute ..!"

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Response to stopdiggin (Reply #32)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:42 PM

33. I must have misunderstood.

I did not realize Trump was the Italian physicians. I thought the article was written about observations of two doctors in two separate areas and hospitals.

I’ll be more careful when I read next time.

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Response to phylny (Reply #33)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:05 PM

34. I wasn't referring to Trump

but the French physician/researcher that made all the news (Didier Raoult)
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/12/magazine/didier-raoult-hydroxychloroquine.html

And I apologize if/for creating an impression that I was attacking you or your post personally.
(and admit that was probably likely)

What my intent and focus here should have been was in issuing a loud and clear, "Hey .. wait, wait, wait, WAIT .."
And .. I can tell by your later postings that you would probably have no objections to that stance.
Again, apologies for any personal tone.

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Response to phylny (Reply #11)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:06 PM

42. Most Italians that I see in public pictures are wearing masks.

In fact, I have yet to see a person that wasn't wearing a mask. A Doctor should know that plays into viral loads that a person takes in. I really hope that he doesn't induce Italians to stop wearing masks.

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Response to stopdiggin (Reply #7)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 02:17 AM

54. The virus has been shown to mutate

I believe there were 6 strains in early April

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Response to LeftInTX (Reply #54)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 04:41 AM

62. there are more mutations than that

(not at all unusual for corona virus) not a single one of which has shown any tangible difference in infection or transmission.

And the idea that all of a sudden all of the SARS-Cov2 being seen in Italy has morphed into a less infectious (and therefore less efficient) strain ...
I'm going to wait for a LOT more confirmation on that one.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:48 PM

8. some good news

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Response to Demovictory9 (Reply #8)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:57 PM

12. It's not "news", it's one doctor's opinion. nt.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #12)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:04 PM

17. Two doctors, if you read the article.

From two different hospitals.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #12)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:06 PM

18. Where did you get your MD?



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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:50 PM

9. oh... i didn't know drumpf had a twin brother that was a doctor in italy........

i guess everything is fine now! this guy figured it out. open everything up!

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Response to Takket (Reply #9)

Sun May 31, 2020, 03:56 PM

10. I found the article interesting.

I didn't think, "Oh, good! We've won!"

Really.

ETA: The article clearly states that the government urged caution. Additionally, it does not address a mutate virus, but viral load, which other sources have mentioned as being an important factor - more viral load is obviously more deadly.

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Response to phylny (Reply #10)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:07 PM

19. There's been a weird anti science bent from some here since it started

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Response to BannonsLiver (Reply #19)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:10 PM

20. I'm not anti-science.

I thought the article was interesting.I posted from a reputable source, linked to the article, and didn't post "Yay! We're all SAVED!"

There seems to be instant attack mode from some here. That and an unfriendly tone.

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Response to phylny (Reply #20)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:12 PM

22. No, not you

I enjoyed the article and was not offended by it like some were in the thread. I’ve noticed when people post things that can be construed as hopeful or positive they are often attacked. We have a lot of what I call Holiday Inn Express epidemiologists here.

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Response to BannonsLiver (Reply #22)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:14 PM

23. Thanks. I guess I'm a bit thin-skinned.

I don't post a lot, and seems when I do, well, it sometimes makes me think "Why?"

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Response to BannonsLiver (Reply #22)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 09:57 AM

65. +1

Don't post anything here about Covid unless it's say that it's going to ravage us for decades, there will never be a treatment, there will never be a vaccine, it can never possibly mutate down, there really are no recoveries and the 2.8 million (as of this moment) recovered on Worldometers is wrong, and all hope is lost.

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Response to Takket (Reply #9)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:09 PM

43. We are headed for a real ass-kicking once the second wave piles on.

I can't believe how galactically stupid people that should know better are.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:00 PM

13. Does that make sense?

That the entire virus in the country spontaneously mutated and now the only thing spreading in the country is a less lethal form of it? To do that would require two things: 1 - that a new strain has in fact become less deadly and 2 - that this new strain transmits vastly more readily than the old strain, so much so that it overwhelmed the original virus in the country in the span of a couple of months.

The alternative explanation, which makes more sense to me, is that when people are contracting the virus now they're getting lower doses of it and reacting less severely because of the rise of so-called NPIs (non-pharmaceutical interventions). That would be things like social distancing, frequent cleaning, face masks, making sure your immune system is working better, taking vitamins/supplements, getting adequate rest, etc. Those should help people get a head start against the virus if it hits them. Also doctors are surely better able to treat people now than they were two months ago.

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Response to Rstrstx (Reply #13)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:01 PM

15. Nope, it doesn't.

The article, if you read it, refers to viral load, not mutation.

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Response to phylny (Reply #15)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:16 PM

45. And viral load is influenced by many factors, like mask wearing and social distancing.

The headline of the OP said "less lethal virus", if it was you that wrote that headline, you should change it. Viral load and viral toxicity are not necessarily the same thing. It is possible for a virus to be very dangerous, but if people avoid getting it in a large dose, it does little damage.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #45)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:03 AM

55. I'm not sure if you read the article. If you had,

you would have seen that Reuters wrote the headline that I copied word for word.

I didn’t see “less lethal virus, but “New coronavirus losing potency, top Italian doctor says.”

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Response to phylny (Reply #55)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:58 AM

59. "The new coronavirus is losing its potency and has become much less lethal"

That was literally the first sentence in the article.

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Response to Rstrstx (Reply #59)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 04:38 AM

61. Ok to be fair, I ran what the doctor actually said in Italian through google translate

This seems to be the part that got everyone worked up in Italy:

Covid-19 "from the clinical point of view no longer exists". The San Raffaele head of Milan Alberto Zangrillo, director of intensive care, is convinced of this. Words that immediately ignited the controversy among the experts, with expressions of bewilderment and condemnation especially by the scientists who are part of the technical scientific committee.

It all started during the broadcast Mezz'ora in più on Raitre, when speaking of the observations on the situation of the Lombardy Region, Zangrillo said: "I really laugh. Today is May 31st and about a month ago we heard epidemiologists say they fear a new wave at the end of the month / beginning of June and who knows how many intensive care places there would have been. In reality, the virus practically no longer exists from a clinical point of view...

...The swabs performed in the last 10 days have a viral load from the quantitative point of view (are) absolutely infinitesimal compared to those performed on patients of a month, two months ago."


It could be the American press took the liberty of inserting the "much less lethal" part in there, but I'm not fluent in Italian so can't be sure. Still, his claims were quite extraordinary and were met with rightful skepticism by his colleagues in Italy.

For those fortunate enough to be fluent in Italian, this was the original text:

Il Covid-19 "dal punto di vista clinico non esiste più". Ne è convinto il primario del San Raffaele di Milano Alberto Zangrillo, direttore della terapia intensiva. Parole che hanno immediatamente infiammato la polemica tra gli esperti, con espressioni di sconcerto e di condanna soprattutto da parte degli scienziati che fanno parte del comitato tecnico scientifico.

Tutto è cominciato durante la trasmissione Mezz'ora in più su Raitre, quando a proposito delle osservazioni sulla situazione della Regione Lombardia, Zangrillo ha detto: "Mi viene veramente da ridere. Oggi è il 31 di maggio e circa un mese fa sentivamo gli epidemiologi dire di temere grandemente una nuova ondata per la fine del mese/inizio di giugno e chissà quanti posti di terapia intensiva ci sarebbero stati da occupare. In realtà il virus, praticamente, dal punto di vista clinico non esiste più...

...I tamponi eseguiti negli ultimi 10 giorni hanno una carica virale dal punto di vista quantitativo assolutamente infinitesimale rispetto a quelli eseguiti su pazienti di un mese, due mesi fa."

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Response to Rstrstx (Reply #59)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 06:28 AM

64. I must have misunderstood your first point

which was "The headline of the OP said 'less lethal virus', if it was you that wrote that headline, you should change it." I responded that I did not write that headline, but copied the Reuters headline verbatim.

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Response to phylny (Reply #64)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:18 PM

66. Another poster wrote that

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Response to Rstrstx (Reply #13)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:11 PM

44. I am where you appear to be on this. nt

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:00 PM

14. I hope so.

As of Friday my county had ~650 active cases but only 9 hospitalized.

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Response to Ace Rothstein (Reply #14)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:16 PM

24. We have had a rise in cases - I think 20 more than two weeks ago (we live in a rural area) and

still have two deaths from about 57 total cases. Of course, there are many people here who scoff at social distancing, wearing masks, etc. Of course, it's a Red area of Virginia.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:04 PM

16. Let them publish their conclusion with data for peer review. Otherwise their claim is suspect.

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Response to Raven123 (Reply #16)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:10 PM

21. I agree.

I took it as yet another article about what we may and may not be learning about the virus. Even the CDC, suspect as it can be, has changed and evolved as we learn more.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:16 PM

25. I wouldn't be

surprised if it evolved into a less deadly disease.

Viruses don't make a living by killing hosts. ImWe should actually expect that COVID will become a less serious virus as it evolves to its host species, us.

There is a definite chance that by the time we have a vaccine it isn't needed as badly.

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Response to BGBD (Reply #25)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:21 PM

26. I just briefly read (maybe even here)

that the 1918 virus did mutate into a less lethal strain, or we got better at treating the symptoms.

Now, this article is not saying the virus mutated - just that two physicians see a lesser viral load from swabs. And, to reiterate (not to you, but others) the government is still urging caution, social distancing, and masks for all.

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Response to phylny (Reply #26)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:40 AM

58. The 1918 flu mutated into a much more deadly strain in the second wave. Nt

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Response to BGBD (Reply #25)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:25 PM

28. Lets not count our chickens before they hatch.

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Response to BGBD (Reply #25)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:20 PM

46. There are two paths the virus can take.

Remain as lethal or more lethal, but develop a longer incubation period so that lots of people get infected, the 1918 virus seemed to have taken that route, it only vanished once it had killed a shitload of people and other people started seriously wearing masks. The second path is to simply become less lethal, while becoming more contagious. We don't know which route SARS-COV-2 will take yet.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #46)

Sun May 31, 2020, 11:50 PM

51. That's one theory

but another holds that Spanish flu rapidly evolved into a much less deadly disease after the peak of the last wave.

I'm not sure that a vaccine has ever been able to stop a pandemic in all of history. Vaccines are really great at ending diseases that are chronic to civilizations. Polio, smallpox, measles, etc. They are helpful with reducing the severity of seasonal viruses like flu, but they haven't been able to stop them or even come close. We've never had a coronavirus vaccine, so hard to say what that will do.

However, I don't believe any pandemic from a novel virus has ever been brought under control by a vaccine. Instead they burn themselves out either because the virus evolves into a less deadly version and deadlier strains are less able to spread because of killing hosts, people take steps to reduce the spread by distancing, or a combination of both.

I'm kind of leaning toward expecting that to happen again this time. We will develop a vaccine, but it will come as the virus is already waning or the pandemic will come to and end before a vaccine is finished.

I don't expect a vaccine to be completed before the end of this year, maybe by this time next year.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:28 PM

29. What exactly is this supposed to be saying?

That humans now getting the virus have an inherently stronger immune response to the virus- for some reason (which doesn't make sense at all)? Or that the isolation measures they've taken have- temporarily- slowed the virus' spread and, also, its strength inside the human body?

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Response to coti (Reply #29)

Sun May 31, 2020, 04:37 PM

31. My read and understanding

is that the swabs are detecting a less deadly viral load. Doesn’t address mutation, doesn’t address any sort of immunity which I think would be way too soon. It is the observation of two doctors, with the warning from Italian officials that we all should continue to be cautious worldwide.

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Response to phylny (Reply #31)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:30 PM

35. This may be the effect of face masks

It may be that when everyone wears face masks, people still get the virus, but are more likely to get a light dose that doesn’t make them sick.

Now if we could only get the redneck magats in my neck of the woods to wear masks.

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Response to spinbaby (Reply #35)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:45 PM

38. Same issue here.

It’s a badge of honor with them. Maddening.

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Response to spinbaby (Reply #35)

Sun May 31, 2020, 06:11 PM

40. +1, if the virus hasn't mutated I don't care for amount of viral load if they haven't tested

... it against what could a normal viral load.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:32 PM

36. Well, then, I guess we'll all be fine!

Unless he's wrong.

I think I'll keep wearing my mask and keeping my distance.

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Response to cwydro (Reply #36)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:44 PM

37. Me too!

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 05:48 PM

39. Interesting but I'm skeptical.

Time will tell.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:23 PM

47. Natural selection at work.

Those with the stronger strains die faster and that genotype is eliminated.

Those with weaker strains live longer and spread it more.

Same happened to the 1918 flu virus. It eventually selected out to a much less lethal form.

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Response to roamer65 (Reply #47)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:50 PM

49. Wow, that's interesting (and sad).

This article doesn't address mutation - and I have no idea how long it takes for a virus to mutate, do you?

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Response to phylny (Reply #49)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 01:09 AM

52. That all depends on the virus.

Some mutate faster like influenza, some hardly do at all.

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Response to roamer65 (Reply #47)

Sun May 31, 2020, 07:50 PM

50. Well, I don't know what's going on in Italy,

but the virus seems to be working just fine in the US. We have cases going up in many states.

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Response to LisaL (Reply #50)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 01:20 AM

53. Yes, we do

We're going to explode in the US in the coming weeks with everything opening, no social distancing, masks, etc.

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Response to LisaL (Reply #50)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:06 AM

56. Our cases in my small country are rising as well.

The death rate during this rise has not changed. I don’t know why.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:39 AM

57. He is Berlusconi's doctor, fwiw. nt

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 04:05 AM

60. I hope so! 🤞

I guess we'll see within 14 days if the protesters or looters end up deathly ill.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 05:30 AM

63. That kind of study would be done by geneticists

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:24 PM

67. Coronaviruses commonly and easily recombine with each other

Links

https://jvi.asm.org/content/57/3/729.short

https://jvi.asm.org/content/66/10/6117.short

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/004268229190795D

In this paper we report the development of a recombination assay for coronavirus, using polymerase chain reaction, in the absence of selection pressure. Our results showed that within a 1-kb region of the peplomer gene, RNA recombination occurred at almost every potential crossover site. Thus, coronavirus RNA recombination appears to be more random than previously realized.


So maybe, we should be using the common cold (also a coronavirus but much less lethal) to fight this one

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Response to McCamy Taylor (Reply #67)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 03:47 PM

68. Interesting reading!

Bookmarked for later.

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Response to McCamy Taylor (Reply #67)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 04:06 PM

69. Maybe that's what's happening.

Viruses do seem to evolve to become less lethal to their hosts over time. After all, viruses that kill too many of their hosts also kill themselves.

Maybe this is due to natural mutations, or maybe due to gene-mixing with common-cold viruses like you mentioned that cause fewer nasty symptoms.

I vaguely remember a news story where an epidemiologist mentioned that there were four distinct coronaviruses (not COVID-19) that we catch and spread around regularly - when we catch those bugs, we just call them colds. This epidemiologist theorizes that eventually, COVID-19 will become the fifth coronavirus common-cold virus.

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Response to phylny (Original post)

Mon Jun 1, 2020, 04:15 PM

70. Less viral load because people are distancing and wearing masks?

Just like ending stay at home orders because the rate of infection is going down. Well duh, cause we're staying home. Less viral load today, is it because it's becoming less contagious as this Italian implies or because there are fewer opportunities for infection? Time will tell I guess.

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