Life in the Time of COVID-19: Quo Vadis Homo Sapiens?

United Nations handing over 250,000 medical masks to Mayor of New York City Bill de Blasio. Credit: UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe By Dr PL de SilvaNEW YORK, Mar 31 2020 (IPS) The writing is on the wall for all to see from far and wide – there is nowhere to hide from this invisible enemy, a new coronavirus, maybe with the exception of self-isolation, quarantined at home and even then, we are not 100% safe. An event of planetary magnitude is currently being visited upon homo sapiens (the so-called ‘wise man’ in Latin) – the primate species that includes you and me and every single other human being inhabiting God’s good earth – irrespective of nationality, sovereignty, national borders, ethnicity, race, tribe, caste, color, creed, language, culture, political faction, power, wealth or the lack thereof. UNHCR notes that “all of us are truly only as safe as the most vulnerable person”. How we as a species, rise to the challenge of overcoming the global onslaught of COVID-19 and the unstable environment it has produced appears to be a multiple trillion-dollar question. In fact, according to Reuters, March 30, 2020 “The U.S. Federal Reserve has offered more than $3 trillion in loans and asset purchases in recent weeks to stop the U.S. financial system from seizing up” and yet, this biggest ever stimulus package may not be big enough. According to the United Nations, the world’s emerging economies need a $2.5 trillion ...
Source: IPS Inter Press Service - Health - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Authors: Tags: Featured Global Headlines Health Human Rights TerraViva United Nations Source Type: news

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The ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has prioritized the development of small-animal models for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). We adapted a clinical isolate of SARS-CoV-2 by serial passaging in the respiratory tract of aged BALB/c mice. The resulting mouse-adapted strain at passage 6 (called MASCp6) showed increased infectivity in mouse lung and led to interstitial pneumonia and inflammatory responses in both young and aged mice after intranasal inoculation. Deep sequencing revealed a panel of adaptive mutations potentially associated with the increased virulence. In parti...
Source: ScienceNOW - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Microbiology r-articles Source Type: news
i-Long Chen Some coronaviruses are zoonotic viruses of human and veterinary medical importance. The novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory symptoms coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), associated with the current global pandemic, is characterized by pneumonia, lymphopenia, and a cytokine storm in humans that has caused catastrophic impacts on public health worldwide. Coronaviruses are known for their ability to evade innate immune surveillance exerted by the host during the early phase of infection. It is important to comprehensively investigate the interaction between highly pathogenic coronaviruses and their hosts. In th...
Source: Viruses - Category: Virology Authors: Tags: Review Source Type: research
The last time most of us gave any thought to antibodies was probably in high school biology, but we’re getting a crash refresher course thanks to COVID-19. They are, after all, the key to our best defenses against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that’s caused the global pandemic. People who have been infected likely rely on antibodies to recover, and antibodies are what vaccines are designed to produce. Or at least that’s what infectious-disease and public-health experts assume for now. Because SARS-CoV-2 is such a new virus, even the world’s best authorities aren’t yet sure what it will take to build p...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news
We report that electrical stimulation (ES) stimulation of post-stroke aged rats led to an improved functional recovery of spatial long-term memory (T-maze), but not on the rotating pole or the inclined plane, both tests requiring complex sensorimotor skills. Surprisingly, ES had a detrimental effect on the asymmetric sensorimotor deficit. Histologically, there was a robust increase in the number of doublecortin-positive cells in the dentate gyrus and SVZ of the infarcted hemisphere and the presence of a considerable number of neurons expressing tubulin beta III in the infarcted area. Among the genes that were unique...
Source: Fight Aging! - Category: Research Authors: Tags: Newsletters Source Type: blogs
Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses with a positive-sense single-stranded RNA genome infecting animals and humans. Coronaviruses have been described more than 70 years ago and contain many species. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) are lethal species caused by human coronaviruses (HCoVs). Currently, a novel strain of HCoVs, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). SARS-CoV-2 was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan, the capital city of the Hubei province of China, and has since spread worldwide cau...
Source: Frontiers in Immunology - Category: Allergy & Immunology Source Type: research
Abstract Interspecies transmissions of viruses between animals and humans may result in unpredictable pathogenic potential and new transmissible diseases. This mechanism has recently been exemplified by the discovery of new pathogenic viruses, such as the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome corona virus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, Middle-East respiratory syndrome-coronavirus epidemic in Saudi Arabia, and the deadly outbreak of Ebola in West Africa. The. SARS-CoV-2 causes coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19), which is having a massive global impact in terms of economic disruption, and, above all, human health. The di...
Source: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology - Category: Microbiology Authors: Tags: Appl Microbiol Biotechnol Source Type: research
An understanding of protective immunity to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is critical for vaccine and public health strategies aimed at ending the global coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. A key unanswered question is whether infection with SARS-CoV-2 results in protective immunity against reexposure. We developed a rhesus macaque model of SARS-CoV-2 infection and observed that macaques had high viral loads in the upper and lower respiratory tract, humoral and cellular immune responses, and pathologic evidence of viral pneumonia. After the initial viral clearance, animals were recha...
Source: ScienceNOW - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Immunology, Microbiology r-articles Source Type: news
CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2 possesses powerful pathogenicity and transmissibility. It is presumed to spread primarily via respiratory droplets and close contact. The most probable transmission pathway is definitely the inter-human one. Asymptomatic patients seem to play a crucial role in spreading the infection. Because of COVID-19 infection pandemic potential, careful surveillance is essential to monitor its future host adaptation, viral evolution, infectivity, transmissibility, and pathogenicity in order to gain an effective vaccine and flock immunity and reduce mortality as soon and as much as it is possible. PMID: 3274...
Source: European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences - Category: Drugs & Pharmacology Tags: Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci Source Type: research
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), an acute onset pneumonia caused by a novel Betacoronavirus Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has rapidly evolved into a pandemic. Though its origin has been linked to the Wuhan City of China’s Hubei Province in December 2019, recent reports claim that the original animal-to-human transmission of the virus probably happened sometime between September and October 2019 in Guangdong Province, rather than Hubei. As of July 3, 2020, India has reported a case positivity rate of 6.5% and a fatality rate of 2.8%, which are among the lowest in the world. Also, the...
Source: Frontiers in Genetics - Category: Genetics & Stem Cells Source Type: research
It wasn’t greed, or curiosity, that made Li Rusheng grab his shotgun and enter Shitou Cave. It was about survival. During Mao-era collectivization of the early 1970s, food was so scarce in the emerald valleys of southwestern China’s Yunnan province that farmers like Li could expect to eat meat only once a year–if they were lucky. So, craving protein, Li and his friends would sneak into the cave to hunt the creatures they could hear squeaking and fluttering inside: bats. Li would creep into the gloom and fire blindly at the vaulted ceiling, picking up any quarry that fell to the ground, while his companion...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 feature Magazine Source Type: news
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