CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 8/20/2020

August 20, 2020

The MISD has reported 3 students with COVID, and there are 5 new cases in Harrison County including 1 in Hallsville Schools, and 1 in Harlton schools –according to the MNM.

Evaluation for SARS-CoV-2 in Breast Milk From 18 Infected Women
Although SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in 1 milk sample from an infected woman, the viral culture for that sample was negative. These data suggest that SARS-CoV-2 RNA does not represent replication-competent virus and that breast milk may not be a source of infection for the infant. Furthermore, when control samples spiked with replication-competent SARS-CoV-2 virus were treated by Holder pasteurization, no replication-competent virus or viral RNA was detectable. These findings are reassuring given the known benefits of breastfeeding and human milk provided through milk banks. Limitations include the small sample size, nonrandom sample with possible selection bias, self-report of RT-PCR positivity, and self-collection of milk samples, some before the standard protocol was instituted.

Herd Immunity For COVID-19 Is Still A Terrible Idea
(J. Harris: I don’t know this writer, but most of his information seems reasonable. It’s an opinion piece with a good discussion of herd immunity. He stresses that for now 6 feet, Masks, and avoidance of crowds is about all the defense we have until the vaccines came out which should help).

From Johns Hopkins:

1. Effects of a major deletion in the SARS-CoV-2 genome on the severity of infection and the inflammatory response: an observational cohort study (Lancet)
Between Jan 22 and March 21, 2020, 278 patients with PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection were screened for the ∆382 deletion and 131 were enrolled onto the study, of whom 92 (70%) were infected with the wild-type virus, ten (8%) had a mix of wild-type and ∆382-variant viruses, and 29 (22%) had only the ∆382 variant. The development of hypoxia requiring supplemental oxygen was less frequent in the ∆382 variant group (0 [0%] of 29 patients) than in the wild-type only group (26 [28%] of 92; absolute difference 28% [95% CI 14–28]). After adjusting for age and presence of comorbidities, infection with the ∆382 variant only was associated with lower odds of developing hypoxia requiring supplemental oxygen (adjusted odds ratio 0·07 [95% CI 0·00–0·48]) compared with infection with wild-type virus only.

(J. Harris: A COVID genetic mutation was noted that caused less severe illness than the original. There may be therapeutic uses for this strain. Virologists have long noted that viruses mutate and not infrequently produce a milder disease, as in the last influenza of 1918 which “calmed down” some as time passed).  

Could the Flu Shot Offer Protection Against Covid-19?
(J. Harris: Another opinion piece quoting a soon to be published study from Hopkins but I include it because it will make the reader doubly aware of the need for and value of flu shots as well as stressing the importance of Masks for flu prevention as well as for protection from COVID).

After the game, the King and the pawn go into the same box.~ Italian proverb
There was a kidnapping at school yesterday. Don’t worry, though – he woke up!

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