How UK scientists are tracking down new Covid variants - podcast

Since the pandemic began, a crack team of scientists have been working to track Covid variants as they appear, to try to stop them from spreading. The Guardian ’s health editor, Sarah Boseley, has been speaking to some of themAt the end of last year, a crack team of British scientists discovered a new coronavirus variant that would spread across the world. The Guardian ’s health editor, Sarah Boseley, tellsRachel Humphreys about how the scientists went about tracing the variant.The UK is world-leading in its genomic sequencing and surveillance. When the coronavirus first reached the UK, genomic scientists began a major collaborative effort to sequence samples from people who had fallen ill. TheCovid-19 Genomics UK (Cog-UK) consortium included the four public health agencies, the Wellcome Sanger Institute and more than a dozen universities. All viruses evolve and change over time; a virus with one or two mutations is called a variant. Genome sequencing aims to track those changes, which most of the time are insignificant. By late December, the UK was responsible for about half of all the world ’sgenome sequencing of the coronavirus.Continue reading...
Source: Guardian Unlimited Science - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Coronavirus Science Genetics Health Epidemics Infectious diseases Source Type: news

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After being epidemic in China, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2) infection has rapidly spread in many countries as a global pandemic, with the number of affected cases dramatically increasing worldwide on a daily basis. Although the median age of hospitalized patients with confirmed infection is usually more advanced 1, with older age reported to be associated to higher mortality rate 2, physiological adaptations occurring during pregnancy have been claimed to be potentially responsible for a more severe respiratory disease, thus leading to higher rates of maternal and fetal complications 3,4.
Source: European Journal of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology - Category: OBGYN Authors: Tags: Correspondence Source Type: research
On Oct. 1, New York state released an app that can notify you if you’ve come into contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19. Called “COVID Alert NY,” the app is one of 10 currently active in states around the U.S. that are based on Google and Apple’s decentralized contact tracing system, which was developed to maintain privacy while also giving health authorities a potentially powerful new tool to clamp down on outbreaks of the virus. “Everybody’s wondering, ‘I was next to this person, I was next to that person,’ but this can actually give you some data,&rdqu...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 feature Londontime Source Type: news
Residents describe what it is like to live in a nursing home during the covid-19 pandemic. They are not afraid of the virus, but are deeply lonely.
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Tags: Personal Finance /personal-finance Money /money Retirement /retirement Innovation /innovation Healthcare /healthcare Editors' Pick editors-pick Breaking breaking-news Coronavirus investing personalfinance Source Type: news
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Source: WBZ-TV - Breaking News, Weather and Sports for Boston, Worcester and New Hampshire - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Boston News Covid-19 Boston, MA Featured Health Healthcare Status Syndicated CBSN Boston Coronavirus New England Journal Of Medicine President Trump Source Type: news
BackgroundThe natural history of disease in patients infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) remained obscure during the early pandemic.AimOur objective was to estimate epidemiological parameters of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and assess the relative infectivity of the incubation period.MethodsWe estimated the distributions of four epidemiological parameters of SARS-CoV-2 transmission using a large database of COVID-19 cases and potential transmission pairs of cases, and assessed their heterogeneity by demographics, epidemic phase and geographical region. We further calculated the time...
Source: Eurosurveillance - Category: Infectious Diseases Authors: Source Type: research
While the world awaits a proven COVID-19 vaccine, medical experts are turning their attention to a shot that’s long been a key component in the public health toolbox: the flu vaccine. Experts hope this year’s flu shot can help prevent an influenza epidemic paired with another wave of coronavirus, which could overwhelm hospitals and lead to general confusion, given that it can be difficult to tell a COVID-19 infection from a case of the flu. This flu season is also something of a dress rehearsal for the eventual rollout of a COVID-19 vaccine amid the ongoing pandemic, allowing doctors, nurses and pharmacists a c...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized COVID-19 Source Type: news
An epidemic of acute respiratory syndrome (Covid-19) started in humans in Wuhan in 2019, and became a pandemic. Groups from China Identified and sequenced the virus responsible for COVID-19, named SARS-CoV-2, and determined that it was a novel coronavirus (CoV) that shared high sequence identity with bat- and pangolin-derived SARS-like CoVs, suggesting a zoonotic origin. SARS-CoV-2 is a member of Coronaviridae, a family of enveloped, positive-sense, single-stranded RNA viruses that infect a broad range of vertebrates.
Source: Journal of Hepatology - Category: Gastroenterology Authors: Tags: Review Source Type: research
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a worldwide effect for what seems like an eternity. After shelter-in-place orders became more prevalent in March,  most people probably didn’t think they’d still be wearing masks in October. So the question remains, when will the pandemic end?  It turns out there are quite a few factors that contribute to the rise and fall of a pandemic, some within our control, some that are not. An outbreak becomes a pandemic when it meets two criteria, first, it spreads rapidly and widely, and second, it must qualify as a severe disease. If either of these factors change, it is no long...
Source: Conversations with Dr Greene - Category: Child Development Authors: Tags: Dr. Greene's Blog Coronavirus COVID COVID-19 COVID-19 Feature Source Type: blogs
Researchers at Uppsala University have found that an effective way of treating the coronavirus behind the 2003 SARS epidemic also works on the closely related SARS-CoV-2 virus, the culprit in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The substance concerned is nitric oxide (NO), a compound with antiviral properties that is produced by the body itself. The study is published in the journal Redox Biology.
Source: World Pharma News - Category: Pharmaceuticals Tags: Featured Research Research and Development Source Type: news
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) will have a lasting impact on public health. In addition to the direct effects of COVID-19 infection, physical distancing and quarantine interventions have indirect effects on health. While necessary, physical distancing interventions to control the spread of COVID-19 could have multiple impacts on people living with opioid use disorder, including impacts on mental health that lead to greater substance use, the availability of drug supply, the ways that people use drugs, treatment-seeking behaviors, and retention in care.
Source: Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment - Category: Addiction Authors: Source Type: research
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