Harvard Gazette: Tracking progression of disease through internet searches for symptoms

Harvard Gazette: Tracking progression of disease through internet searches for symptoms. “You’re not feeling well so you open a search engine and type: fever, dry cough, hoping to find hints of what you may have. A handful of days later, you’re feeling worse, and you type in: trouble breathing. It turns out you’re not the only one who’s doing this, and a Harvard senior’s research project suggests that tracking the results of all those searches can tell us something about the progression of a new disease in individuals and through a population.”

AP: Old records shed new light on smallpox outbreaks in 1700s

AP: Old records shed new light on smallpox outbreaks in 1700s. “A highly contagious disease originating far from America’s shores triggers deadly outbreaks that spread rapidly, infecting the masses. Shots are available, but a divided public agonizes over getting jabbed. Sound familiar? Newly digitized records — including a minister’s diary scanned and posted online by Boston’s Congregational Library and Archives — are shedding fresh light on devastating outbreaks of smallpox that hit the city in the 1700s.”

EurekAlert: Immediate detection of airborne viruses with a disposable kit!

EurekAlert: Immediate detection of airborne viruses with a disposable kit!. “The KIST-GIST collaborative research team developed an integrated sampling/monitoring platform that uses a disposable kit to easily collect and detect airborne viruses on-site. The disposable virus sampling/monitoring kit developed by the team is similar to the pregnancy test kit, and enables completion of both sampling and diagnosing on airborne viruses within 50 minutes on-site (10 to 30 minutes of sampling and 20 minutes of diagnosis) without requiring a separate cleaning or separation process.”

CNN: How coronavirus affects the entire body

CNN: How coronavirus affects the entire body. “Coronavirus damages not only the lungs, but the kidneys, liver, heart, brain and nervous system, skin and gastrointestinal tract, doctors said Friday in a review of reports about Covid-19 patients. The team at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City — one of the hospitals flooded with patients in the spring — went through their own experiences and collected reports from other medical teams around the world.”

New York Times: Can an Algorithm Predict the Pandemic’s Next Moves?

New York Times: Can an Algorithm Predict the Pandemic’s Next Moves?. “Judging when to tighten, or loosen, the local economy has become the world’s most consequential guessing game, and each policymaker has his or her own instincts and benchmarks. The point when hospitals reach 70 percent capacity is a red flag, for instance; so are upticks in coronavirus case counts and deaths. But as the governors of states like Florida, California and Texas have learned in recent days, such benchmarks make for a poor alarm system.”

Khaleej Times: Dubai developing database on professionals researching infectious diseases

Khaleej Times: Dubai developing database on professionals researching infectious diseases. “Dubai is developing a database of professionals specialising in and researching infectious diseases, the Dubai Future Foundation has said in a report. Titled ‘Life after Covid-19: Health’, the report is prepared in collaboration with the Dubai Future Council for Health and Wellbeing, and highlights most significant global post-pandemic trends in the healthcare sector.”

Guelph Now: Researchers Develop New Method Of Analyzing Social Media Data To Identify Potential Disease Outbreaks

Guelph Now: Researchers Develop New Method Of Analyzing Social Media Data To Identify Potential Disease Outbreaks. “A new method to analyze social media data could help predict future outbreaks of diseases and viruses like COVID-19 and the measles. In a new study, researchers from the University of Waterloo examined computer simulations to develop a new method of analyzing interactions on social media that can predict when a disease outbreak is likely.”

New York Times: Slowing the Coronavirus Is Speeding the Spread of Other Diseases

New York Times: Slowing the Coronavirus Is Speeding the Spread of Other Diseases. “This spring, after the World Health Organization and UNICEF warned that the pandemic could spread swiftly when children gathered for shots, many countries suspended their inoculation programs. Even in countries that tried to keep them going, cargo flights with vaccine supplies were halted by the pandemic and health workers diverted to fight it. Now, diphtheria is appearing in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal.”

Bloomberg: A Google Plan to Wipe Out Mosquitoes Appears to Be Working

Bloomberg: A Google Plan to Wipe Out Mosquitoes Appears to Be Working. “An experimental program led by Google parent Alphabet Inc. to wipe out disease-causing mosquitoes succeeded in nearly eliminating them from three test sites in California’s Central Valley. Stamping out illness caused by mosquitoes is one of Alphabet unit Verily’s most ambitious public-health projects. The effort appears to be paying off, according to a paper published in the journal Nature Biotechnology on Monday.”

Coronavirus: three misconceptions about how animals transmit diseases debunked (The Conversation)

The Conversation: Coronavirus: three misconceptions about how animals transmit diseases debunked. This article was written by a lecturer in epidemiology at the University of Cambridge. “Zoonotic diseases are caused by pathogens which originate in other animal species. Some diseases, such as rabies, cause sporadic outbreaks, often self-contained but deadly and traumatising for the communities they infect. Others manage to spread worldwide and become pandemic, circulating in the global population. Some are repeat offenders that re-emerge from animal hosts in a mutated form every few decades – think influenza, plague and cholera. Many others are now part of our burden of endemic diseases, such as measles, mumps or HIV. The coronavirus causing COVID-19 is closely related to those that caused the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) pandemic in 2003. Despite speculation, it’s too early to tell whether COVID-19 will disappear within a year or stay with us permanently like the flu.”

MIT Technology Review: Over 24,000 coronavirus research papers are now available in one place

MIT Technology Review: Over 24,000 coronavirus research papers are now available in one place.”The news: Today researchers collaborating across several organizations released the Covid-19 Open Research Dataset (CORD-19), which includes over 24,000 research papers from peer-reviewed journals as well as sources like bioRxiv and medRxiv (websites where scientists can post non-peer-reviewed preprint papers). The research covers SARS-CoV-2 (the scientific name for the coronavirus), Covid-19 (the scientific name for the disease), and the coronavirus group.”