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174

A qualified doctor challenging the Germ Theory of Disease after 1900? Wow. This is just a smattering - just a random tasting - of the thousands - or perhaps millions - of studies showing that contagious diseases are contagious. Dog to dog transmission of a novel influenza virus (H5N2) isolated from a canine To determine whether the novel H5N2 was ...


143

Normal viruses infect cells in order to take advantage of cellular mechanisms to reproduce themselves. A class of viruses known as "retroviruses" have a slightly peculiar mechanism to achieve this - they synthesise a special enzyme called "reverse transcriptase", which translates their own RNA into DNA which is incorporated into the host cell's genome. The ...


82

Q Has a virus ever escaped a high-level virus lab? Yes, depending on definitions. How deadly pathogens have escaped the lab — over and over again Most appropriate candidates for an inappropriately cherry picking and restrictive reading of the claim in question: the 1977 "red flu" occurring from China or Russia is thought o be most likely a failed ...


69

Edit (15/4/20): Biological and genetic analysis of the virus suggests that the virus evolved naturally, i.e. was not "made in a Chinese lab". However, as Lang Lang's answer notes, it is arguably premature to say whether the virus passed to humans directly from another animal species, or via a (presumably accidental) release of a specimen from the ...


48

Fox News links to the CDC source which says: CDC estimates that so far this season there have been at least 34 million flu illnesses, 350,000 hospitalizations and 20,000 deaths from flu. By "season" they mean the 2019/2020 season. For data on past seasons, see here. Note the illnesses vs deaths here which gives a mortality rate of 0.05%. The usual ...


22

Latest study confirms that the chances increase due to a variety of factors diminishing immune response, at least in mouse cells: Temperature-dependent innate defense against the common cold virus limits viral replication at warm temperature in mouse airway cells (Ellen F. Foxman, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1411030112) ... To gain insight into the mechanism of ...


21

In an attempt to back up the WHO's claim but not using their data or statement. The 'Corona 2019' virus is a specific variant of the more general corona virus family. Further, this family is part of a broader family of viruses known as enveloped viruses, with envelops usually composed of lipids and proteins, and are required for a virus to be infectious to a ...


19

You are quoting the WHO and then say 'no citation is provided'. The WHO is the source. They are well equipped to research these kind of questions and it is part of their job to issue recommendations and rules about these kind of things. So receiving a package from China is safe, source the WHO. On the other hand, travelling to Wuhan in person is currently ...


17

The Tencent screenshot is almost certainly a hoax, for the simple reason that such screenshots are extremely easy to fake. For example, here's how easy it is to get a "screenshot" of the New York Times showing millions of people dead in Japan. First, we search for coronavirus and pick a random article. Here's a good one: Next, hit F12 to open up developer ...


16

The number of confirmed deaths due to influenza has been much less than 20,000 for the 2019-2020 flu season through March 5th 2020. According the the US National Center for Health Statistics, the weekly data for influenza deaths so far this season (through the 8th week of 2020) is as follows: Week Deaths 40 (2019) 16 41 16 42 ...


14

According to the World Health Organization: More than two thirds (70%) of all malaria deaths occur in this age group. In 2015, about 305,000 African children died before their fifth birthdays. This data was used by an African organization africacheck.org when trying to estimate the number of malaria deaths in children under 5 in Africa: Then, using a ...


13

It is essentially irrelevant whether the virus was purified, and the reason it wasn't in the cases that the Youtube video mentioned is that it simply was not necessary or useful to add a purification step there. I'll quote a pagagraph from a random electron microscopy paper about SARS-CoV2 I found here: To avoid artefacts associated with virus concentration ...


12

The whole you-didn't-image-this-in-a-highly-purified-sample is a red herring with regard to determining whether a (suspected) virus is a "a brand new viral pathogen" or not. Nobody does that kind of novelty determination based on imaging the virus... simply because lots of viruses look alike even under electron microscopy. Imaging is not a useful ...


10

It is too early to tell. We do not know its origin. We have neither any evidence for nor anything against this claim. 1. First of all: While the question 'as is' misrepresents the origin of the claim: The Washington Times article just says this: Coronavirus may have originated in lab linked to China's biowarfare program That does not say 'the lab made this'...


10

Summary Based on current evidence, the Zika virus appears to be the likely cause of Brazil's microcephaly outbreak. There is limited evidence to support pyriproxyfen as a cause, but further, more specific, studies are required to test this hypothesis. Zika Virus There are several strands of evidence which point to the Zika virus as the likely (but not ...


8

I wish to add to the above answer. Approximately 9% of the genome is viral in origin, but current research suggests there is less of 'you' than there are other viral related sequences. Here is a very nice listing of the percentages of various genetic elements within the human genome: http://sandwalk.blogspot.com/2008/02/theme-genomes-junk-dna.html Although ...


7

According to Bacteriophage Distributions and Temporal Variability in the Ocean’s Interior mBio Nov/Dec 2017 Volume 8, e01903-17: Phages have been shown to kill hosts at rates of up to 20 to 40% of the total population per day, potentially strongly impacting bacterioplankton populations (7,8). Where reference 7 is Ecology of prokaryotic viruses. FEMS ...


7

This is a rather tentative answer since the evidence still looks fairly contradictory to me, but the BBC has an article that reiterates what DW says, with more detail: Thanks to the laws of thermodynamics, cold air can carry less water vapour before it reaches the “dew point” and falls as rain. So while the weather outside may seem wetter, the air itself is ...


6

Yes, there are two ways in which untreated rabies can develop, one, affecting roughly 70% of untreated people, is called "furious rabies" and leads to dramatic changes in behaviour. From the WHO (my bold): The incubation period for rabies is typically 1–3 months, but may vary from <1 week to >1 year. The initial symptoms of rabies are fever ...


6

The CDC now say the Zika virus is the cause. On April 13, 2016, a new report was published by doctors from the CDC in the New England Journal of Medicine. Zika Virus and Birth Defects — Reviewing the Evidence for Causality, DOI: 10.1056/NEJMsr1604338 This review examined the available evidence and concluded: On the basis of this review, we conclude that a ...


6

Take a look at this live map of the virus. The calculation is based on the number of deaths, divided by the number of confirmed cases (multiplied by 100 to get it as a percent%). As of February 3rd 2020, that would be 362 / 17405 * 100 ~= 2.08% fatality rate.


6

According to Agro-terrorism : "Accidental releases of FMD virus from research laboratories have occurred in the United Kingdom [reference 38]. Historically, FMD virus was accidentally released from PIADC [Plum Island Animal Disease Center] in 1978... FMD virus is on the List of biosafety level 4 organisms


5

No. The premise behind the article seems to be that SARS was widely prevalent (in some areas), >10% of people were infected, without severe symptoms, and developed antibodies that can now be tested for. A 2006 systematic review looked at this: Seroprevalence of IgG antibodies to SARS-coronavirus in asymptomatic or subclinical population groups Our meta-...


5

This is a trick developed by Stefan Lanka, who is a close associate of Samuel Eckert. He has already created an identical reward for isolation of the measles virus. Under German law, they do not actually have to pay the reward. The vaccination opponent was right, for formal reasons. The sponsor wanted a single piece of work with the evidence, but the ...


4

As has been stated, there is no evidence that such is the origin. From the other direction, the phylogeny of the virus seems to indicate that it diverged from an existing virus in bats. And, that ancestral virus is also ancestral to several other viruses in bats and humans, including SARS. Though SARS seems to have followed a path from bats, through civets, ...


4

For a slightly more extensive summary that doesn't require someone to read 20-page paper... Jeffrey Lockwood (who also wrote a book on the topic of entomological warfare, writes in a 2012 paper broader in scope: Yellow fever became the mainstay of the Camp Detrick’s entomological program, when it was discovered that mosquito larvae would uptake the ...


4

The word "standardized" seems like an over-statement to me. The US certainly did investigate the possibility of using yellow fever as a bioweapon during the Cold War, according to Hay (1999): The literature obtained under the Freedom of Information Act provides some insight into the working of the United States biological weapons programme. [...] The ...


3

COVID-19 is so new that there are a lot of things that are uncertain. There is some anecdotal evidence that young people can develop significant complication. For example, this article in the Atlantic by a NYC doctor describes a number of young, healthy patients coming to the hospital with significant discomfort and in one case sever inflammation. The New ...


2

According to a Slate article: In 2007, FMD appeared again in Britain, 4 kilometers from a biosafety level 4 laboratory—a designation indicating the highest level of lab security—located at Pirbright. The strain had caused a 1967 outbreak in the United Kingdom but was not then circulating in animals anywhere. It was, however, used in vaccine manufacture at ...


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