• Monday, July 6, 2020

Scientists are unraveling the Chinese coronavirus with unprecedented speed and openness

Discussion in 'COVID-19 Coronavirus' started by beijingwalker, Jan 25, 2020.

  1. beijingwalker

    beijingwalker ELITE MEMBER

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    Scientists are unraveling the Chinese coronavirus with unprecedented speed and openness
    Carolyn Y. Johnson

    Jan. 25, 2020 at 5:17 a.m. GMT+8

    Just 10 days after a pneumonia-like illness was first reported among people who visited a seafood market in Wuhan, China, scientists released the genetic sequence of the coronavirus that sickened them. That precious bit of data, freely available to any researcher who wanted to study it, unleashed a massive collaborative effort to understand the mysterious new pathogen that has been rapidly spreading in China and beyond.

    The genome was posted on a Friday night on an open-access repository for genetic information. By Saturday morning, Andrew Mesecar, a professor of cancer structural biology at Purdue University, had redirected his laboratory to start analyzing the DNA sequence, which bore a striking resemblance to that of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), the 2002 viral outbreak that sickened more than 8,000 people and killed nearly 800. Scientists at the National Institutes of Health’s Rocky Mountain Laboratories in Montana asked a company to turn the information from a string of letters on a computer screen into actual DNA they could study in lab dishes.

    At unprecedented speed, scientists are starting experiments, sharing data and revealing the secrets of the pathogen — a race that is made possible by new scientific tools and cultural norms in the face of a public health emergency.

    “The pace is unmatched,” said Karla Satchell, a professor of microbiology-immunology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “This is really new. Lots of people [in science] still try to hide what they’re doing, don’t want to talk about what they’re doing, and everybody out there is like: This is the case where we don’t worry about egos, we don’t worry about who’s first, we just care about solving the problem. The information flow has been really fast.”

    Purdue University scientists are preparing to scale up production of experimental drugs that they were initially developing to fight SARS, to see if they show promise against the new coronavirus. Twelve days after the genome was posted, NIH scientists published their first analysis, showing that the coronavirus used the same door to get into human cells as SARS. About 12 hours later, a Chinese team of scientistswho had isolated the virus from patients showed, using the actual virus, that the team was correct.

    Meanwhile, a team at Northwestern recently ordered about a dozen pieces of the viral genome to be synthesized by a company to enable research that will help lead to drugs, vaccines and ways to rapidly diagnose the virus.

    Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview that with the viral genome, researchers have started on developing a vaccine. He is “reasonably confident” that a safety study could begin testing it in people within three months.

    “The fact that it’s about three months is really, I think, remarkable, because that would be the fastest that we have ever gotten from the time we got the sequence to the time into a human,” Fauci said. “If we can do that, it would be the fastest on the record.”

    He cautioned that doesn’t mean a vaccine would be widely available in three months; larger studies would be required to determine both the safety and effectiveness of a vaccine. But it is still science at light speed; during the SARS outbreak, it took 20 months from getting the genome of the virus to the first tests of a vaccine in people.

    When SARS began to spread, the tools scientists needed were much less mature, including the basic infrastructure for sharing results rapidly so anyone could build on them. It wasn’t until 2013 that bioRxiv, a preprint server to share scientific papers, was created so scientists would have an easy way to widely share results before they had gone through the process of being vetted and accepted by scientific journals — a process that can take many months.

    “This is one of the first times we’re getting to see an outbreak of a new virus and have the scientific community sharing their data almost in real time, rather than have to go through classic route of going through the journals,” said Michael Letko, a postdoctoral fellow at Rocky Mountain Laboratories.

    Mesecar said the difference in the speed of science would have been almost unthinkable when researchers were working on SARS.

    “Imagine walking from Chicago to San Francisco, and then imagine taking a plane from Chicago to San Francisco. That’s kind of the difference,” Mesecar said.

    He hopes revealing the secrets of how the virus works will help calm the spreading panic. He noted that influenza sickens and kills large numbers of people in the United States and globally each year, but doesn’t trigger a worldwide panic because the risks are understood and a vaccine exists.

    “When you don’t understand something, you panic. You have fear. When you gain an understanding, you don’t fear something as much — you know how it’s going to operate,” Mesecar said. “By sharing that information faster ... both research as well as what’s happening on the ground with individuals, I’m hoping that panic and that fear are going to go down.”


    https://www.washingtonpost.com/scie...oronavirus-with-unprecedented-speed-openness/
     
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  2. beijingwalker

    beijingwalker ELITE MEMBER

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    American Scientists Praise Chinese Virologists For Catching Coronavirus So Quickly

    Vineet Menachery, a virologist at the University of Texas Medical Branch, told The Scientist that the speed in which Chinese scientists were able to obtain and publish the virus sequences is “an amazing feat.”

    He said that when the SARS outbreak happened, virologists didn’t know for months until the virus spread widely.

    Other scientists including University of Washington’s Alex Greninger said the virus itself is less severe than SARS. Still, it’s too early to determine whether the impact of the virus will be larger than the SARS outbreak 17 years ago.

    Scientists are currently theorizing that the virus spread from bats to snakes then to humans, causing irregularities in the lungs.
     
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  3. tower9

    tower9 FULL MEMBER

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    Hopefully they can find a vaccine soon but if China does not forcefully regulate and clamp down on wet markets and the wildlife trade, this will just repeat itself.
     
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  4. beijingwalker

    beijingwalker ELITE MEMBER

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    We don't have wet markets in Beijing, hopefully after this outbreak wet markets can be banned all over China.
     
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  5. tower9

    tower9 FULL MEMBER

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    Well, you keep talking about Beijing but obviously China is much more than just Beijing or Northern China. Most of these diseases come from Southern China, their disgusting wet markets and their disgusting eating habits.
     
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  6. Foxtrot Delta

    Foxtrot Delta SENIOR MEMBER

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    Very good. We just hope it was not a new kind of war on china by usa or some other party
     
  7. Kaniska

    Kaniska ELITE MEMBER

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    What is wet market?
     
  8. tower9

    tower9 FULL MEMBER

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    Markets that sell live animals.
     
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  9. Nan Yang

    Nan Yang SENIOR MEMBER

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    Wet market is wet. The floor is constantly wet. It has drainage in the floor. At the end of the day the market is cleaned by hosing the floor with water.
    Nowadays most are replaced by modern air-conditioned supermarkets.

    Central Market Kuala Lumpur
    [​IMG]
    Central Market Kuala Lumpur is located at Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock (Foch Avenue) and the pedestrian-only section of Jalan Hang Kasturi (Rodger Street), a few minutes away from Petaling Street. It was founded in 1888 and originally used as a wet market,[1] while the current Art Deco style building was completed in 1937. It has been classified as a Heritage Site by the Malaysian Heritage Society and it is now a landmark for Malaysian culture and heritage.
    Now converted into a modern shopping mall.
     
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  10. JSCh

    JSCh ELITE MEMBER

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    How the new coronavirus stacks up against SARS and MERS
    For the third time since around 2003, a coronavirus has jumped from animals to people

    [​IMG]
    A new coronavirus called 2019 novel coronavirus, or 2019-nCoV, (seen here in a transmission electron micrograph) is spreading in China. It is similar to both SARS and MERS.

    COURTESY: IVDC, CHINA CDC VIA GISAID

    By Tina Hesman Saey
    JANUARY 24, 2020 AT 4:22 PM

    Coronaviruses, one of a variety of viruses that cause colds, have been making people cough and sneeze seemingly forever. But occasionally, a new version infects people and causes serious illness and deaths.

    That is happening now with the coronavirus that has killed at least 26 people and sickened at least 900 since it emerged in central China in December. The World Health Organization is monitoring the virus’s spread to see whether it will turn into a global public health emergency (SN: 1/23/20).

    Among the ill are two people in the United States who contracted the virus during travels in China. A Chicago woman in her 60s is the second U.S. case of the new coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed January 24 in a news conference.

    Officials are currently monitoring 63 people across 22 states for signs of the pneumonia-like disease, including fever, cough and other respiratory symptoms. Of those people, 11 have tested negative for the virus. Two, including the newest case and another patient in Seattle, tested positive, the CDC reported (SN: 1/21/20).

    France reported two cases on January 24 as well, the first in Europe.

    Much still remains unknown about the new coronavirus (SN: 1/10/20), which for now is being called 2019 novel coronavirus, or 2019-nCoV. Lessons learned from previous coronavirus outbreaks, including severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, and Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, may help health officials head off some of the more serious consequences from this virus outbreak.

    What are coronaviruses?


    ....

    How the new coronavirus stacks up against SARS and MERS | Science News
     
  11. 8888888888888

    8888888888888 FULL MEMBER

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    Like catching the Flu during Flu season which you can die from because no medicine for it currently.
     
  12. beijingwalker

    beijingwalker ELITE MEMBER

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    The vaccine will be ready in a couple of months or even earlier, so the cure is on the way, but for now, just like common cold, there's no cure.