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    • German Experiment Tests How The Coronavirus Spreads At A Concert

    In Germany, several thousand volunteers attended a pop-up concert as part of an experiment to understand how COVID-19 spreads in large-scale stadium events — and how to prevent it.

    About 1,500 people took part in the experiment Saturday at Arena Leipzig. Researchers put volunteers in three different concert simulations with varying health and safety protocols, admission plans and seat assignments. All participants were required to test negative for the coronavirus 48 hours before the event and wear masks throughout the experiment.

    It was the first time people in Germany were allowed inside an indoor arena for a concert since authorities banned major events at the start of the pandemic. Even though Germany was praised early on for its response to the pandemic, case numbers have been rising recently. The daily number of new infections surpassed 2,000 on Saturday for the first time since April.

    The study was organized by Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg and cost nearly $1.2 million. Researchers set out to collect data on crowd behavior to understand better how COVID-19 spreads at large cultural and social events, said Michael Gekle, dean of the medical faculty at the university.

    Gekle hopes the data will "contribute to national decisions as to whether an event should take place or not, thanks to reliable predictions as to the risk of additional infections related to such an event," he told German state broadcaster DW.

    The first scenario simulated an event before the time of the pandemic with no social distancing at all. The second concert included multiple points of entry to reduce crowding and more space between participants. The third concert had a smaller audience and strictly enforced social distancing by making participants stand 5 feet apart, the distance recommended by the German Ministry of Health.

    Scientists gave each participant an electronic contact tracing device that recorded their movements throughout the stadium. Hand sanitizer mixed with fluorescent marking spray also helped track which surfaces people most frequently touched. A smoke machine helped participants visualize the aerosols that help spread the virus.

    German pop singer Tim Bendzko performed during the three scenarios. While he was skeptical that the concerts would feel realistic, he told The Associated Press that the crowd was engaged.

    "We really had a lot of fun," he told the AP. "We survived drive-in concerts this summer and in that respect, for us, this is a first step toward normalcy."

    Even though only about a third of the 4,200 volunteers expected showed up for the experiment, researchers said they were satisfied with the data collected. The results of the study are expected in four to six weeks.

    Before the study was conducted, critics said such an experiment could not accurately create the conditions of a real concert, where people are drinking alcohol and singing without wearing masks. Gekle said health authorities wouldn't allow participants to drink indoors during the experiment.

    "That's the problem of every study, that it's not the 'real world,' " he said. "So we faced the option of either remaining without data or having data that doesn't completely reflect the normal context — but it's still halfway there. And halfway is still better than nothing at all.": https://www.npr.org/sections/coronav...s-at-a-concert
    • Coronavirus Cases: 24,806,498

    Deaths: 838,759

    Underreported US death count: 185,488

    US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

    Civil War (US Army) - 140,414
    Korean War - 33,686
    Iraq War - 3,836 deaths
    Afghanistan War - 1,833
    911 Casualties – 2,977

    Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 182,746

    Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
    it's been blown way out of proportion.
    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

    Comment


    • Korean War Casualties
      Nearly 5 million people died. More than half of these–about 10 percent of Korea's prewar population–were civilians.
      33,686 dead seppos.

      Iraq war casualties
      109,032 deaths including 66,081 civilian deaths.
      3,836 dead seppos.
      Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

      Comment


      • Originally posted by S Landreth View Post
        ^No big deal. Thanks for helping me turn the page
        Just as sad as Ant Robertson

        What a loser

        Comment


        • Afghanistan War Casualties

          Est. 200,000~
          1,833 dead seppos
          Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Mr Tinkles View Post

            I work with a grandson of a retired Colonel from the South Korean Army

            In his days as a Lieutenant he was leading a party of children to safety during the Korean war when he described an incoming shell that literally cut one of the children in half


            1 of the innocent
            You just made that up didn't you Mrs. Tinkles.

            Comment


              • New Study Highlights New Evidence That Masks Prevent Coronavirus Spread

              Through all the ups and downs and uncertainty of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, one thing has become concrete: wearing a mask prevents the spread of the virus.

              Now, a new study from Duke University gives more evidence confirming this and sheds more light on what kind of mask works the best at blocking those virus-spreading droplets.

              We caught up with pulmonologist Raed Dweik, MD, Chairman of Cleveland Clinic’s Respiratory Institute, to discuss the study’s findings.

              Why masks work
              If someone carrying the virus is wearing a cloth mask, that mask blocks most of the respiratory droplets they’re exhaling which is where the virus lives. Instead of propelling those droplets away from you, the mask keeps them from traveling more than a few feet. Thus, we get the recommended social distancing guideline of six feet.

              “The spread of the virus really goes down in areas where people wear masks and it goes as down as four-to-five times reduced risk of infection when people in the community are wearing a mask than when they’re not wearing a mask,” says Dr. Dweik.

              Not only do masks stop those droplets from spreading when you breathe or talk, they also block keep them from traveling pretty far when you sneeze or cough.

              “Those actions can propel this cloud of droplets from you up to 25 or 26 feet,” Dr. Dweik says. But by wearing a mask, you greatly reduce that distance traveled.

              The study’s approach
              While the Duke study was actually focused on coming up with a cost-effective way of evaluating how effective a type of mask is, it was able to collect data on 14 different types of masks using that method.

              The method worked like this: a mask-wearing tester spoke through an opening into a small, dark box that was shot through with an expanded laser beam. A cell phone camera recorded the droplets spread by the speaker that were caught by the laser and a computer algorithm counted the number of droplets.

              The relatively cheap cost of necessary equipment and the ease of building the set-up makes it a tempting option for companies or organizations that want to perform their own tests.

              But it was the data that this study collected that attracted a lot of attention.

              The best and worst masks
              According to the study, the best masks for blocking the spread of droplets is, not surprisingly, the medical-grade N95 mask used by many front-line health care workers. Of course, because of the demand for these masks for hospital use, most people don’t have them.

              Fortunately, the study says cotton masks, the kind of masks most people are likely to have, work quite well at blocking the spread of droplets.

              What didn’t work, according to the study, were bandanas, knitted masks and neck fleeces, which are popular with runners for cold weather running and, now, coronavirus safety while exercising.

              While Dr. Dweik wasn’t involved in the study, he said of the results, “With the exception of neck fleece, this study provided support that pretty much all cloth mask types reduce expelled droplets. Many performed much better than we even originally thought and close to surgical masks.”

              What about the neck fleece?
              The study’s neck fleece data caused a bit of stir with many news outlets picking up on the results that those fleeces actually performed worse than wearing no mask at all.

              According to the study’s authors, it seems that the porous material that makes up the neck fleece breaks the larger respiratory droplets into smaller droplets instead of blocking them which allows them to linger in the air a little longer.

              While it’s certainly reason for concern, the study’s authors also point out that the main focus of the study was to demonstrate the testing set-up: “Again, we want to note that the mask tests performed here (one speaker for all masks and four speakers for selected masks) should serve only as a demonstration.”

              More research is needed to determine the effectiveness — or lack thereof — of those neck fleeces and Dr. Dweik agrees.

              The bottom line: masks work
              The neck fleece results aside, one thing does become clear when reading the study: properly wearing a mask over your nose and mouth can help to stop the spread of the coronavirus when paired with other safe practices like social distancing and regularly washing your hands.

              Even if you don’t have symptoms, Dr. Dweik says you should still follow those guidelines because of how many cases have been asymptomatic.

              “Taken together, I think, these are very powerful in preventing the spread of infection,” he adds. “Each one alone is good but not sufficient. If you do them all, you minimize your risk of spreading or getting the disease much more than just each one by itself.”: https://health.clevelandclinic.org/n...avirus-spread/
              • Coronavirus Cases: 24,933,381

              Deaths: 841,800

              Underreported US death count: 185,965

              US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

              World War I - 116,516
              Vietnam War - 58,209
              Iraq War - 4,576
              War in Afghanistan - 2,216
              911 Casualties – 2,977

              Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 184,494

              Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
              it's been blown way out of proportion.
              Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

              Comment


              • Afghanistan War Casualties

                Est. 200,000~
                2,216 dead seppos
                Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

                Comment


                  • First U.S. novel coronavirus reinfection case identified in Nevada study

                  Researchers for the first time have identified someone in the United States who was reinfected with the novel coronavirus, according to a study that has not yet been reviewed by outside experts.

                  The report, published online, describes a 25-year-old man living in Reno, Nevada, who tested positive for the virus in April after showing mild illness. He got sick again in late May and developed more severe COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.

                  “This study likely represents a clear example of reinfection ... reinfections are possible - which we already knew, because immunity is never 100%,” Kristian Anderson, professor of immunology and microbiology at Scripps Research in La Jolla, California, said in an emailed comment.

                  Cases of presumed reinfection have cropped up in other parts of the world, but questions have arisen about testing accuracy. Earlier this week, University of Hong Kong researchers reported details of a 33-year-old man who had recovered in April from a severe case of COVID-19 and was diagnosed four months later with a different strain of the virus.

                  Researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine and the Nevada State Public Health Laboratory said they were able to show through sophisticated testing that the virus associated with each instance of the Reno man’s infection represented genetically different strains.

                  They emphasized that reinfection with the virus is probably rare, but said the findings imply that initial exposure to the virus may not result in full immunity for everyone.

                  “We don’t know at what frequency reinfections occur and how that might change over time,” Anderson said. “Before we have broader studies illuminating these questions, we can’t conclude what a single case of reinfection means for longevity and robustness of COVID-19 immunity and relevance for a future vaccine.” : https://www.reuters.com/article/us-h...-idUSKBN25O2L9
                  • Coronavirus Cases: 24,960,846

                  Deaths: 842,305

                  Underreported US death count: 185,996

                  US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

                  World War I - 116,516
                  Vietnam War - 58,209
                  Iraq War - 4,576
                  War in Afghanistan - 2,216
                  911 Casualties – 2,977

                  Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 184,494

                  Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
                  it's been blown way out of proportion.
                  Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

                  Comment


                  • Vietnam war casualties
                    Total deaths: 1,353,000
                    58,290 dead seppos

                    Iraq war casualties
                    109,032 deaths including 66,081 civilian deaths.
                    3,836 dead seppos.

                    Afghanistan War Casualties
                    Est. 200,000~
                    2,216 dead seppos
                    Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

                    Comment


                      • People with obesity are at high risk for severe COVID-19. That poses serious medical and social challenges

                      The United States and many other developed countries are confronting intertwined public health crises — the coronavirus pandemic and obesity.

                      About 40% of U.S. adults have obesity, and recent studies show it’s a risk factor for severe and fatal COVID-19, even in young adults.

                      “With COVID-19, it’s clear that they are a vulnerable group,” said Rohit Soans, director of bariatric surgery at Temple University Hospital. “But it’s hard to tell someone 30 or 40 years old, ‘You need to be treated like your 80-year-old grandma.’”

                      It’s also hard to couch the message in a way that doesn’t reinforce cultural prejudices that assume being too heavy is merely a moral failure, not a chronic disease. People with obesity often internalize these negative stereotypes.

                      Internalized weight bias “is a pretty significant barrier for people in treatment,” said dietitian Colleen Tewksbury, a senior research investigator and bariatric program manager at the University of Pennsylvania.

                      It’s no surprise that senior citizens are particularly vulnerable to severe COVID-19, a disease that can wreak havoc on virtually every organ system. Many people over 65 already have age-related chronic illnesses that have damaged their lungs, heart, blood vessels, and kidneys.

                      But obesity — defined as a Body Mass Index of 30 or more (174 pounds for a 5-foot-4 woman) — is a risk factor that transcends age. A French study of COVID-19 patients in intensive care found those with a BMI over 35 had a sevenfold higher chance of needing mechanical ventilation than those with a BMI in the healthy range. A study of COVID-19 patients under age 60 who were hospitalized in New York City found that a BMI over 35 almost quadrupled the chance of needing critical care.

                      Exactly why is not clear, but the virus appears to exploit a number of weight-related abnormalities, as explained in a review of eight studies published this month in the journal Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism.

                      First, having a lot of excess weight puts added pressure on the chest and abdomen, restricting breathing. Second, people with obesity often develop chronic diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension, that raise the risk of severe COVID-19. Third, obesity enhances formation of blood clots that can block vessels, and so does the coronavirus.

                      Blood clotting problems “are inherent with obesity,” Tewksbury said.

                      Two other explanations for why obesity may worsen COVID-19 involve unique characteristics of each disease.

                      Adipose (fat) tissue acts almost like a separate organ. It can disrupt metabolism by reducing sensitivity to insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar, and by causing constant inflammation. Normally, inflammation is the immune system’s temporary, healing response to injury. But severe COVID-19 can trigger a life-threatening immune overreaction, called a cytokine storm, that ends up destroying healthy tissue.

                      “We don’t fully understand it,” said Tewksbury, “but obesity leads to an immunocompromised state.”

                      The coronavirus also uses a cell surface protein called ACE2 to break into cells, where it replicates and emerges to infect adjacent cells.

                      “Even though the lung is the main entry point for COVID-19, there is an increased ACE2 [production] in adipose tissue, making it a more vulnerable target for COVID-19 infection,” wrote the review article authors, led by researchers at the University of Leicester.

                      Before the pandemic, the global increase in obesity was a major public health concern. COVID-19 has only heightened it.: https://www.inquirer.com/health/coro...-20200828.html
                      • Coronavirus Cases: 25,187,740

                      Deaths: 847,040

                      Underreported US death count: 186,857

                      US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

                      World War I - 116,516
                      Vietnam War - 58,209
                      Iraq War - 4,576
                      War in Afghanistan - 2,216
                      911 Casualties – 2,977

                      Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 184,494

                      Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
                      it's been blown way out of proportion.
                      Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

                      Comment


                      • Vietnam war casualties
                        Total deaths: 1,353,000
                        58,290 dead seppos

                        Iraq war casualties
                        109,032 deaths including 66,081 civilian deaths.
                        3,836 dead seppos.

                        Afghanistan War Casualties
                        Est. 200,000~
                        2,216 dead seppos
                        Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

                        Comment


                          • Study: Flu Can Spread by Airborne Dust or Fibers. And COVID-19?

                          Some respiratory viruses, likely including COVID-19, can spread through the air on dust, fibers and other microscopic particles, according to experiments with laboratory animals by researchers at the University of California-Davis and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.

                          Respiratory viruses traditionally spread through liquid droplets from speaking, coughing or sneezing. The study, published Aug. 18 in Nature Communications, revealed microscopic, non-respiratory particles could transmit influenza between guinea pigs.

                          “It’s really shocking to most virologists and epidemiologists that airborne dust, rather than expiratory droplets, can carry influenza virus capable of infecting animals,” said Professor William Ristenpart of the Cal-Davis department of chemical engineering, one of the research project’s leaders.

                          Like COVID-19, influenza virus can also spread by touching hard surfaces like countertops or door handles, then touching the mucous membranes in the mouth, nose and eyes. These secondary surfaces, called fomites, were the focus of the new study.

                          The researchers created what they called aerosolized fomites to carry the virus between guinea pigs. They found that immune guinea pigs with influenza virus applied to their fur could transmit the virus to other guinea pigs. Because the “infected” guinea pigs could not spread the virus through their respiratory tract, the non-respiratory particles were the sole means of infection.

                          The team counted spikes of up to 1,000 particles per second, using an automated particle sizer, as the uninfected guinea pigs moved around the cage. The guinea pigs’ breathing produced a constant, much lower rate.

                          To test whether microscopic fibers from an inanimate object could carry infectious viruses, the researchers treated facial tissues with influenza virus, allowed them to dry, then crumpled them in from the particle sizer. That action released up to 900 particles per second in sizes that could be inhaled. They also were able to infect cells from these particles.

                          The study, though dedicated to influenza virus, adds another layer of possible transmission of COVID-19 and the importance of masks and social distancing in its prevention.: https://hartfordhealthcare.org/about...6&publicId=395
                          • Coronavirus Cases: 25,282,859

                          Deaths: 848,465

                          Underreported US death count: 186,944

                          US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

                          World War I - 116,516
                          Vietnam War - 58,209
                          Iraq War - 4,576
                          War in Afghanistan - 2,216
                          911 Casualties – 2,977

                          Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 184,494

                          Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
                          it's been blown way out of proportion.
                          Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

                          Comment


                          • Vietnam war casualties
                            Total deaths: 1,353,000
                            58,290 dead seppos

                            Iraq war casualties
                            109,032 deaths including 66,081 civilian deaths.
                            3,836 dead seppos.

                            Afghanistan War Casualties
                            Est. 200,000~
                            2,216 dead seppos
                            Dont get sick of me just yet, for I will be here for quite a while

                            Comment


                              • Thailand - Government to hike repayment in bid to rein in public debt

                              The government has increased debt repayment to 3 per cent of the total national annual budget in order to maintain fiscal discipline, the Finance Ministry said.

                              Patricia Mongkhonvanit, director-general at the Public Debt Management Office (PDMO), said the government has increased debt repayment to 3 per cent of the annual budget of Bt 3.3 trillion for fiscal year 2021 (October 2020 to September 2021).

                              Usually, the government earmarks about 2 per cent of total expenditure for debt payment, she noted.

                              In the current fiscal year, the government had originally planned principal repayment at 2.68 per cent of total expenditure of Bt3.2 trillion, but following the impact of Covid-19 on the economy, the government cut debt payment to 1.68 per cent, she explained.

                              According to the fiscal discipline law, debt payment will be between 2.5 to 3.5 per cent.

                              Meanwhile, interest payment is set at 5-6 per cent of total expenditure, in keeping with the international benchmark of less than 10 per cent.

                              She assured that Thai public debt was not high, currently at 45.83 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP). However, public debt will shoot up to 57.8 per cent of GDP by the end of fiscal year 2021, approaching the sustainability limit set at 60 per cent of GDP.

                              Thai public debt is on a rising trend as the government recently issued an emergency decree to borrow Bt1 trillion to deal with Covid-19's impact on the economy and people's income. The government also plans to borrow an extra Bt214 billion to finance the budget deficit, originally estimated to be Bt 469 billion.

                              Of the Bt1-trillion loan for recovery from the impact of Covid-19, so far the government has borrowed about 33 per cent of the target. The government’s borrowing is expected to reach Bt450 billion by the end of September -- the end of the current fiscal year. The rest of the Bt550 billion will be borrowed during fiscal year 2021, she added.

                              The budget bill for fiscal year 2021 is pending approval in Parliament.: https://www.nationthailand.com/busin...ernal_referral

                              Originally posted by Somchai Boonporn View Post
                              Perhaps a blessing in disguise for the Golden Land.
                              Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

                              Comment


                                • UW Hospital to enroll 1,600 in COVID-19 vaccine study

                                UW Hospital plans to enroll 1,600 people in a study of one of the leading COVID-19 vaccine candidates, research that will evaluate the effectiveness of the injection before it can be submitted for approval and potentially used to tame the pandemic.

                                The hospital is one of 100 sites expected to enroll 30,000 people nationwide in a phase 3 trial of the experimental vaccine by British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford. The first injections in the study were given last week in Florida.

                                Of three dozen experimental COVID-19 vaccines in human studies around the world, the AstraZeneca candidate is among nine in large-scale, late-stage trials, according to The New York Times. The federal government has provided up to $1.2 billion for the company to produce 300 million doses for the U.S., more than double the amount of support for two other candidates by Moderna Inc. and Johnson and Johnson.

                                “The focus is getting a vaccine that works so that the world can return to normal,” said Dr. William Hartman, a UW Health anesthesiologist heading up the trial in Madison.

                                One or more COVID-19 vaccines could be approved and available by late this year or early next year, health officials have said, though no timeline is guaranteed and it’s unclear how well any might work. Supply shortages would mean preferred groups of people would get vaccines first.

                                Starting Monday, UW Health will seek 1,600 people to sign up over the next eight weeks for the study, in which they will receive two injections four weeks apart. Two-thirds of participants will get the experimental vaccine, known as AZD1222, and one third will get a placebo.

                                Participants and their doctors won’t know which group they’re in. The goal is to see if people who get the real vaccine are protected from infection after natural exposure to COVID-19 more than those who receive the placebo, and to analyze the length and strength of their immune response to the vaccine.

                                Though the vaccine has been developed and tested more quickly than usual, Hartman said the process has been safe. “It doesn’t appear that any corners have been cut,” he said. “It’s moving swiftly, but not too quickly.”

                                Hartman also oversees studies of an experimental antibody treatment for COVID-19 at UW Hospital. He has led the hospital’s delivery of convalescent plasma, which uses antibodies from recovered patients to treat those struggling with infections.

                                It was UW Hospital’s key role in a national study of convalescent plasma that led the hospital to become part of the AstraZeneca vaccine study, said Jennifer Parnell, clinical trials director for the UW Institute for Clinical and Translational Research.

                                Once enrollment in the AstraZeneca study is done, it’s possible UW Health might be part of other COVID-19 vaccine trials. “We would be well poised to launch a second one,” Parnell said.

                                Engineered virus
                                The AstraZeneca vaccine uses a virus that causes common colds in chimpanzees, which is engineered to be harmless and contain the genetic sequence that encodes for a spike protein on the surface of the coronavirus. The protein primes the immune system to attack the virus if it later enters the body.

                                That is a common technique for vaccines but different from some COVID-19 vaccine candidates, such as Moderna’s, which uses messenger RNA to deliver the viral protein.

                                The AstraZeneca vaccine generated an immune response in an earlier study of about 1,000 patients, according to a study published in July in the medical journal Lancet. About 60% of participants had side effects — such as fever, headaches or muscle aches — considered mild or moderate.

                                18 and older
                                To be in the UW Hospital study, people must be at least 18 years old and healthy or have medically stable chronic diseases. They must not have had a previously confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19.

                                Enrollment initially will be limited to ages 18-55, but older people should be able to sign up later, with the goal of eventually having 25% of participants age 65 and older, Hartman said. UW Hospital aims to include communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19, including Blacks and Latinos, he said.

                                During the two-year study, enrollees will undergo physical exams, blood tests and COVID-19 tests.: https://madison.com/wsj/news/local/h...31ab52a7a.html
                                • Coronavirus Cases: 25,505,920

                                Deaths: 852,357

                                Underreported US death count: 187,410

                                US conflicts and 911 Casualties………

                                World War I - 116,516
                                Vietnam War - 58,209
                                Iraq War - 4,576
                                War in Afghanistan - 2,216
                                911 Casualties – 2,977

                                Total US Casualties in the conflicts above and 911 Casualties: 184,494

                                Originally posted by Boon Mee View Post
                                it's been blown way out of proportion.
                                Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

                                Comment

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