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What do we know about the novel coronavirus?
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  • Coronavirus arrives at Spain. Masks' prices on


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  • GAZETTE: You've been quoted you as saying you expect between 40 percent and 70 percent of humanity to be infected with this virus within a year. Is that still the case?

    LIPSITCH: It is, but an important qualifier is that I expect 40 to 70 percent of adults to be infected. We just don't understand whether children are getting infected at low rates or just not showing very strong symptoms. So I don't want to make assumptions about children until we know more. That number also assumes that we don't put in place effective, long-term countermeasures, like social distancing for months at a time which, I think, is a fair assumption. It may be that a few places like China can sustain it, but even China is beginning to let up.

    GAZETTE: You mentioned children having been hit only lightly by this. What about other parts of the population? What do we know about the impact of this from a demographic standpoint?

    LIPSITCH: It's definitely the case that the older you are, the more at risk of getting infected you are and, if you get symptomatic infection, the more at risk of dying you are. **Men also seem to be overrepresented among those getting severe illness. The reasons why are a really important research question. One thing that also needs to be looked at is the impact on health-care workers because they are at high risk of getting infected, and I would like to know whether they're at higher risk of getting severe infection. Some of the anecdotal cases of young physicians dying make me wonder whether they're exposed to a higher dose and that's making them sicker.

  • There are approx 617,000,000 people over 65 in the world. 70% of that is about 432mil. If 10% die or become incapacitated that equals about 43 million worldwide. In the US, there's about 50million people over 65. 35million would contract the virus and about 3 to 4 million would die. A cure for SS ? Of course, lots of younger people will die too, just like we've seen in China. We've seen the stock market plunge like 1929, and community spread is now an event in California. The political crooks everywhere are sticking their swollen little fingers in the dike. The dam will never hold. Although curiously Israel announces a vaccine with weeks, and that makes me really paranoid.

  • @kurth

    It is 100% pandemic already. Just public figures are afraid about stock and other bubbles.

  • @Vitaliy ...totally agree. No one (who remotely benefits from the economy) wants to see the train coming.

  • @kurth

    Just watch the media, they are like little dogs, looking in the owners eyes and checking nearby owners leg. :-)

  • Chinese scientists have reported that the coronavirus ripping through populations worldwide is much more likely than its close cousin Sars to bind to human cells, as it contains unexpected genes which link it to HIV and Ebola. The research comes from Nankai University in the north Chinese city of Tianjin. Published on February 14, it has already become one of the most viewed papers on the platform, indicating the massive interest both in China and abroad for the latest findings on the virus.

    It is well-known by now that 2019-nCoV shares over 80 percent of its DNA with Sars virus, making the cause of the 2002/3 outbreak in Southeast Asia its closest genetic relative. Sars invaded the human body by binding to a receptor protein, called ACE2, on the membranes of cells. But this was ultimately the downfall of that virus — ACE2 is rare in the cells of healthy people, which limited the spread of Sars significantly, resulting in it burning itself out by 2004. In the end, only about 8,000 people worldwide were infected, as compared to covid-19 which has already infected over 80,000 people.

    Unlike Sars though, the novel Coronavirus has a section of genes that are absent from the Sars genome, according to this research. In fact, they bear resemblance to genes found in HIV and Ebola. These genes may encode for a different pathway targeting the protein furin on human cells, which is how HIV and Ebola attack. If it operates as those other viruses do, this mutation could make it up to 1,000 times better at binding to human cells than Sars.

    Hearing the names of these terrible plagues will hardly serve to inspire confidence in those afraid that the world is spiralling into a global pandemic. Nevertheless, there is a silver lining to this news: Gaining deeper understanding into the precise genetic nature of the coronavirus will enlighten the scientists working on it as to how it transmits from person to person, what a vaccine for it would look like, and ultimately, how it can be stopped.

    The suggestion that the coronavirus may bear some similarities to HIV has sparked controversy before. Earlier this month, a pre-print paper was published on bioRxiv entitled, “Uncanny similarity of unique inserts in the 2019-nCoV spike protein to HIV-1 gp120 and Gag”, suggested that some HIV genes may have actually leapt into 2019-nCoV, making it more contagious and therefore dangerous. The paper soon came under fire for the spuriousness of its results, and the authors have acknowledged that it would not have gotten through peer-review in that version. After all, this is the point of peer review: to challenge, clarify and pick holes in research before official publication.

    In the case of the latest research, the team behind it have published it as a pre-print on, a Chinese version of bioRxiv used by the Chinese Academy of Sciences. As such it is not peer-reviewed, and the findings must be taken as provisional until the final version of the paper appears.

    That said, it is not the only research that has found the furin-like cleavage site present in HIV and Ebola, but which is absent from other coronaviruses — another pre-print on

    and a French study published in the peer-reviewed journal Antiviral Research came to the same conclusion.

    Drugs do exist which target the furin enzyme — drugs previously used in HIV treatments. Whether they could be co-opted for covid-19, or whether this is in fact a sensible path towards a treatment, remains to be seen.

    by Peter Andrews. Science journalist and writer, based in London. He has a background in the life sciences, and graduated from the University of Glasgow with a degree in Genetics
  • What's amazing is none of these scientists are mentioning that the rna sequence is not normal mutation, and at the epicenter is china's only bsl-4 lab, and also the theft of the virus from canada's bsl-4 lab by chinese scientist. Which makes me believe , as Dr Francis Boyle said, they're all compromised , having themselves taken funds to work on bioweapons. My own experience says 99% of all funding comes from defense depts, some directly and some disguised by funneling thru other govt agencies, so most biological scientist peer reviewing processes will be subject to compromised scientist and committees . As well, the news of the lab has remained suspiciously absent from the mainstream media, with the USA following china's totalitarian lead and controlling information leaks. We can only hope, that since the criminals-in-office have to maintain some semblance of false security by not protecting themselves, they will be among the first to get sick. And I'll add this to the available information ....

  • What's amazing is none of these scientists are mentioning that the rna sequence is not normal mutation, and at the epicenter is china's only bsl-4 lab, and also the theft of the virus from canada's bsl-4 lab by chinese scientist.

    I think it is all other western internet. No one prove that it is not "normal mutation" for now as I remember.
    Also, having lab in same city can be both coincidence (because city is close to natural source of such viruses) and also reason for other country to choose such location.

  • this article has been updated.... well, I've always said it's a possibility the virus is a bioweapon from the US. Also, recommend reading the comments on above article

  • its jumping to canines. should be interesting as its cross species jumping now...

  • It is a pandemic. No doubt. I never worried about SARS, H5N1, and Ebola. MERS? I didn't even know about it. But COVID-19... I do worry about it. It's spread worldwide, and we still don't know what it really is. And many countries seem to do "Don't test. Don't tell." incubation longer than 2 weeks? coronavirus strains in urine? re-infection? Russia 1 case, India 3 cases, Africa 3 cases, Latin America 3 cases. Yeah...right. Earth is flat, too.

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  • @stonebat virus does not survive in tropical countries. The spread is mainly in countries that have cold weather or where lots of people have air conditioning. That's why virus epidemic reduces in summer.

  • USA: COVID-19 Vaccine Not for the Poor

    Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has angered Democrats after suggesting that a coronavirus vaccine might not be affordable for all Americans and that the Trump administration could not cap its price because of the need for private sector investment in Covid-19 research.

  • @kurth

    I still do not have a rapid diagnostic test available to me."

    In Mordor all is simpler. Officials state that testing is available in two big cities only, and long laboratory one.
    As journalists called and checked real labs they said they can't do in in reality, it is actually only pair of Moscow laboratories that can do it, in few days time.

    So, numbers will be nice for long time, until some bodies on the streets.

  • EDIT :- I thought your comment was related to the wrong post. Here is a good explanation of a virus reduction in summer.

    @kurth I think the response of the Chinese govt, the mix of HIV and SARS RNA, the presence of the bioweapons lab are all the evidence I need. I had studied evolutionary systems in computer modeling a long time ago. The human DNA has about 100,000 gene sequences. The change between Covid and SARS viron involves at least 4 sequences from HIV RNA. Note - the same sequences. Each sequence has multiple proteins and molecules. The probability of this happening naturally is close to zero.

    You quoted the ZH link - do read the papers he has cited.

  • Since we dont have a cure and in a pandemic a hospital will be useless, just go to a hot, humid place with a beach. Lie down at the beach, sip on your drink and cough out the slime. At least you will die in a nicer place.

  • @zcream

    Out of this article - idea about humidifiers in public places can be viable.

  • So far, deaths occured in cold places and where people live in ac. I think just breathing hot fresh air the virus can be diluted in your lungs. That's why people need a respirator in hospital. Let your fever run. Takes lots of hot showers and a steam bath if you can.

    Deaths possibly due to cytokine storm, as in other influenza cases. It causes organ failure. Essentially an over reaction of your body to the foreign presence in your lungs.

    Only known easily available solution is turmeric (curcurmin)

  • And turmeric is used in all indian foods :-) If you take turmeric, put some olive oil in teaspoon and then add the heap of turmeric. It will help you retain the powder inside your digestive system.

    So I've got vit c, vit d, selenium, turmeric. And if I fall ill, just rehydration powder, hot green tea, hot showers and I'll go to the beach. Also you can use vicks vaporub on your neck and then use a steam inhaler to push that into your lungs. Simplest steam inhaler, put towel over your head, vicks on your neck and put head and towel over boiling water.

    You can start reading about cytokine storm here -

    Use the links to references at the bottom.

  • @zcream

    I merged some of your posts to not make it 6 separate ones.

    Deaths possibly due to cytokine storm, as in other influenza cases.

    Any scientific papers proving it in case of this specific virus?