the effect of wind speed on social distancing

A single cough releases about 3,000 droplets and droplets travels at 50 miles per hour
We computationally investigate the effect of wind speed on social distancing. For a mild human cough in air at 20○C and 50% relative humidity, we found that human saliva-disease-carrier droplets may travel up to unexpected considerable distances depending on the wind speed. When the wind speed was approximately zero, the saliva droplets did not travel 2 m, which is within the social distancing recommendations. However, at wind speeds varying from 4 km/h to 15 km/h, we found that the saliva droplets can travel up to 6 m with a decrease in the concentration and liquid droplet size in the wind direction. [Physics of Fluids] Superspreading events are ill-understood and difficult to study [...] Individual patients’ characteristics play a role as well. Some people shed far more virus, and for a longer period of time, than others, perhaps because of differences… Read More...

Tear gas flavor ice cream

The two drivers of the spread of the disease are close contact and crowding in closed spaces
Our projections suggest warmer and more humid times of the year, and locations, may offer a modest reduction in reproductive number;  however, upcoming changes in weather alone will NOT be enough to fully contain the transmission of COVID-19.  112 persons were infected with SARS-CoV-2 associated with fitness dance classes at 12 sports facilities. Vigorous exercise in confined spaces should be minimized during outbreaks. [...] Instructor C taught Pilates and yoga for classes of 7–8 students in the same facility at the same time as instructor B, but none of her students tested positive for the virus) [CDC] Even before Vietnam reported its first cases on 23 January, it was on high alert for Covid-19. At one Lima market, 79% of vendors had coronavirus There is a common misunderstanding that the social benefits of a share of the population acquiring immunity… Read More...

How this moment will be misremembered

It is unclear whether infected dogs can transmit the virus to other animals or back to humans.
Drive-in rave in Germany there is a substantial probability that normal speaking causes airborne virus transmission in confined environments The highest levels of SARS-CoV-2 copies per cell were detected in the respiratory tract, and lower levels were detected the kidneys, liver, heart, brain, and blood Kidney injury seen in more than a third of hospitalized COVID-19 patients: U.S. study Three domestic cats were inoculated with SARS-CoV-2 on day 0. One day after inoculation, a cat with no previous SARS-CoV-2 infection was cohoused with each of the inoculated cats to assess whether transmission of the virus by direct contact would occur between the cats in each of the three pairs. [...] On day 3, one of the cats with no previous infection had infectious virus detected in a nasal swab specimen, and 5 days later, virus was detected in all three… Read More...

messing with AI models

Herd immunity is the only realistic option. The question is how to get there safely.
Spiky 'coronavirus hairdo' makes comeback in Kenya Wearing a face mask against COVID-19 results in a reduction of social distancing Men less than women believe that they will be seriously affected by the coronavirus, and this partly mediates gender differences in intentions to wear a face covering (this is particularly ironic because official statistics actually show that men are affected by the COVID-19 more seriously than women). [...] men less than women intend to wear a face covering, but this difference almost disappears in counties where wearing a face covering is mandatory. [...] Men more than women agree that wearing a face covering is shameful, not cool, a sign of weakness, and a stigma. [ psyArXiv] The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on female sexual behavior in women in Turkey. Sexual desire and frequency of intercourse significantly increased during the… Read More...

Vitamin D

Three potential futures for Covid-19: recurring small outbreaks, a monster wave, or a persistent crisis
Three potential futures for Covid-19: recurring small outbreaks, a monster wave, or a persistent crisis “I’ve been telling everybody that my event horizon is about 36 months, and that’s my best-case scenario,” she said. “I’m quite certain that this is going to go in waves,” she added. “It won’t be a tsunami that comes across America all at once and then retreats all at once. It will be micro-waves that shoot up in Des Moines and then in New Orleans and then in Houston and so on, and it’s going to affect how people think about all kinds of things.” [NY Times] Deaths in March 2020 vs March 2015-9. Northern Italy +94.9%. Southern Italy +2%. Lombardy +186.5%. Emilia-Romagna +70.1%. Campania -1.9%. Sicily -2.7%. Milan +92.6%. Rome -9.4%. COVID can come for anyone, but older adults, men, and black people have… Read More...

false positives, not reinfections

Couple Hosts “Pants Optional” Wedding On Zoom Amid Lockdown Tests in recovered patients found false positives, not reinfections, experts say The findings of this study…
Couple Hosts "Pants Optional" Wedding On Zoom Amid Lockdown Tests in recovered patients found false positives, not reinfections, experts say The findings of this study suggest that most transmission of COVID-19 occurred at the very early stage of the disease or even before the onset of symptoms. [...] High transmissibility of COVID-19 before and immediately after symptom onset suggests that finding and isolating symptomatic patients alone may not suffice to interrupt transmission, and that more generalized measures might be required, such as social distancing. [JAMA Intern Med.] My problem with contact tracing apps is that they have absolutely no value. I'm not even talking about the privacy concerns, I mean the efficacy. Does anybody think this will do something useful? ... This is just something governments want to do for the hell of it. To me, it's just techies doing… Read More...

the amount of virus exposure

The largest Arctic ozone hole ever recorded is now closed
The largest Arctic ozone hole ever recorded is now closed Facial recognition has become more widespread and accurate in recent years, as an artificial intelligence technology called deep learning made computers much better at interpreting images. Governments and private companies use facial recognition to identify people at workplaces, schools, and airports, among other places, although some algorithms perform less well on women and people with darker skin tones. Now the facial-recognition industry is trying to adapt to a world where many people keep their faces covered to avoid spreading disease. [...] “We can identify a person wearing a balaclava, or a medical mask and a hat covering the forehead,” says Artem Kuharenko, founder of NtechLab, a Russian company whose technology is deployed on 150,000 cameras in Moscow. He says that the company has experience with face masks through contracts in… Read More...

The Dark Room Problem

Changes in sexual behaviors of young women and men during the coronavirus disease 2019 outbreak (44% of participants reported a decrease in the number of…
Changes in sexual behaviors of young women and men during the coronavirus disease 2019 outbreak (44% of participants reported a decrease in the number of sexual partners and about 37% of participants reported a decrease in sexual frequency) The effect of facial hair and sex on the dispersal of bacteria below a masked subject (mask wiggling has been reported to increase dermabrasion and bacterial contamination of surfaces immediately below the face ... Bearded males may also consider removing their beards) Apple consumption is related to better sexual quality of life in young women Oral sex: A new, and possibly the most dangerous, route of toxoplasmosis transmission. -- This route of toxoplasmosis transmission could be experimentally verified by force-feeding laboratory mice with the ejaculate of infected men. Unhappiness is hill-shaped in age and the average age where the maximum occurs is… Read More...

intra-household contagion

we find evidence consistent with higher intra-household contagion as days go by.
In this paper, we explore different channels to explain the disparities in COVID- 19 incidence across New York City neighborhoods. [...] We find evidence consistent with higher intra-household contagion as days go by. [...] Although commuting patterns have been put forth as a major factor in the spread of the disease in NYC, we show that, after including occupation controls, they fail to significantly explain variation in share of positive tests at the zip code level. [Previously: Home outbreaks were the dominant category, followed by transport] In NSW, from March to mid-April 2020, 18 individuals (9 students and 9 staff) from 15 schools were confirmed as COVID-19 cases; all of these individuals had an opportunity to transmit the COVID-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2) to others in their schools. 735 students and 128 staff were close contacts of these initial 18 cases. One… Read More...

ROMO, the reality of missing out

Big tech doesn’t build anything. It’s not likely to give us vaccines or diagnostic tests. We don’t even seem to know how to make a…
Big tech doesn’t build anything. It’s not likely to give us vaccines or diagnostic tests. We don’t even seem to know how to make a cotton swab. Those hoping the US could turn its dominant tech industry into a dynamo of innovation against the pandemic will be disappointed. The pandemic shows that the US is no longer much good at coming up with technologies relevant to our most basic needs. Combining these large-scale data with a transmission model of social interactions and transmission in four settings (home, school, work, other) we were able to simulate where contacts are typically made, and how effective different approaches might be. [...] If there were 10,000 new symptomatic cases per day, it meant around 150,000 to 400,000 contacts would be quarantined each day under the scenarios we considered. [...] We also looked Iceland-scale mass… Read More...

irradiance and solar zenith angle

We show case and death counts had significantly lower growth rates at higher temperatures (>14 °C) when aligned for stage in the epidemic. We show…
We show case and death counts had significantly lower growth rates at higher temperatures (>14 °C) when aligned for stage in the epidemic. We show irradiance and in particular solar zenith angle in combination with cloudopacity explain COVID-19 morbidity and mortality growth better than temperature. Healthy people in their 30s and 40s barely sick with covid-19 are dying from strokes People are dying from coronavirus because we’re not fast enough at clinical research we propose that reduced innate antiviral defenses coupled with exuberant inflammatory cytokine production are the defining and driving feature of COVID-19. COVID-19 Superspreader Events in 28 Countries: Critical Patterns and Lessons Modelling COVID-19 exit strategies for policy makers in the United Kingdom Experts offer four benchmarks that can serve as a guide for cities and states, eliminating some of the guesswork. Hospitals in the state must be… Read More...

a few repeated contacts

Our models demonstrate that while social distancing measures clearly do flatten the curve, strategic reduction of contact can strongly increase their efficiency, introducing the possibility…
Our models demonstrate that while social distancing measures clearly do flatten the curve, strategic reduction of contact can strongly increase their efficiency, introducing the possibility of allowing some social contact while keeping risks low. Limiting interaction to a few repeated contacts emerges as the most effective strategy. More than 21 percent of around 1,300 people in New York City who were tested for coronavirus antibodies this week were found to have them [...] possibly as many as 2.7 million [...] It would mean that the fatality rate from the virus was relatively low, about 0.5 percent [more] The challenges of antibody testing for Covid-19 -- no tests to date have performed well scientists say the true potential of the rapidly developed antibody tests is still unknown Developing antibody tests for SARS-CoV-2 Nearly all Covid-19 patients put on ventilators in New… Read More...

the strength of your immune system

COVID-19 is, in many ways, proving to be a disease of uncertainty. According to a new study from Italy, some 43 percent of people with…
COVID-19 is, in many ways, proving to be a disease of uncertainty. According to a new study from Italy, some 43 percent of people with the virus have no symptoms. Among those who do develop symptoms, it is common to feel sick in uncomfortable but familiar ways—congestion, fever, aches, and general malaise. Many people start to feel a little bit better. Then, for many, comes a dramatic tipping point. “Some people really fall off the cliff, and we don’t have good predictors of who it’s going to happen to,” Stephen Thomas, the chair of infectious diseases at Upstate University Hospital, told me. Those people will become short of breath, their heart racing and mind detached from reality. They experience organ failure and spend weeks in the ICU, if they survive at all. Meanwhile, many others simply keep feeling better and… Read More...

Air pollution, testicles, farts, stool, sanitizers

Air pollution may be ‘key contributor’ to Covid-19 deaths. Research shows almost 80% of deaths across four countries were in most polluted regions. We found…
Air pollution may be ‘key contributor’ to Covid-19 deaths. Research shows almost 80% of deaths across four countries were in most polluted regions. We found that when the person said “stay healthy,” numerous droplets ranging from 20 to 500 μm were generated Parents name their baby 'Sanitiser' Out of Spain’s 40,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, 5,400 — nearly 14 percent — are medical professionals. In France, the public hospital system in Paris has tallied 490 infected staff members, a small but growing proportion of the system’s 100,000 or so employees. France: By 11 May, when interventions are scheduled to be eased, we project 3.7 million (range: 2.3-6.7) people, 5.7% of the population, will have been infected. Population immunity appears insufficient to avoid a second wave if all control measures are released at the end of the lockdown. Swedish data again -… Read More...

Oil below $0

Experts say vast deserts, absence of life, may indicate Mars was once run by conservatives
New Zealand isn’t just flattening the curve. It’s squashing it. It took only 10 days for signs that the approach here — “elimination” rather than the “containment” goal of the United States and other Western countries — is working. [...] The health minister was caught mountain biking and taking his family to the beach. He was publicly chastised by Ardern, who said she would have fired him if it weren’t disruptive to the crisis response. [...] “Other countries have had a gradual ramp-up, but our approach is exactly the opposite,” he said. While other Western countries have tried to slow the disease and “flatten the curve,” New Zealand has tried to stamp it out entirely. [Washington Post | The Conversation Carl T. Bergstrom: letting the epidemic go through to herd immunity is worse than it sounds and Some nations may… Read More...

Two years

“Those with antibodies will be able to travel and work, and the rest will be discriminated against.”
Without widespread testing and surveillance, said Angela Rasmussen, a virologist at Columbia University in New York, “we won’t be able to quickly identify and isolate cases in which the patients are presymptomatic or asymptomatic, and thus community transmission could be re-established.” Without a vaccine, the virus is expected to circulate for years, and the death tally will rise over time. [...] Only when tens of thousands of antibody tests are done will we know how many silent carriers there may be in the United States. The C.D.C. has suggested it might be 25 percent of those who test positive. Researchers in Iceland said it might be double that. [...] There may be good news buried in this inconsistency: The virus may also be mutating to cause fewer symptoms. In the movies, viruses become more deadly. In reality, they usually become… Read More...