COVID-19's a Pandemic (Abstract Science: March 9-13)
Also: Big advances in kidney dialysis care, is coronavirus seasonal, and how long will COVID-19 live in the air
(Nature, Charlotte Huff, 3/11/20)
An international cadre of physicians, bioengineers and entrepreneurs who are working to revolutionize treatment for kidney failure, designing devices that are portable enough to carry into work or strap around the waist. Some are even developing artificial kidneys that could be surgically implanted.
(The Washington Post, Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, 3/11/20)
One question that some virus specialists, and some meteorologists, are asking is whether there may be a seasonal aspect to the coronavirus outbreak. Epidemiologists warn that so little is known about this coronavirus that it’s impossible to predict the course of the epidemic on the basis of weather or climate factors alone, and in fact, available evidence suggests that the virus can spread easily in warmer climates, such as Singapore’s.
(Technology Review, Antonio Regalado, 3/11/200
A US National Institutes of Health team released a study this week showing that the coronavirus germ can survive on plastic and stainless steel as long as three days. The stability of the virus also makes it a super spreader through air, and likely explains why it spread so rapidly at a recent event in Boston. Their findings appeared this week in the New England Journal of Medicine.
(NPR, Bill Chappell, 3/11/20)
The COVID-19 viral disease that has swept into at least 114 countries and killed more than 4,000 people is now officially a pandemic, the World Health Organization announced March 11. It was the first time a coronavirus caused a pandemic, and the first time, since the H1N1 swine flu in 2009 that the WHO called an outbreak a pandemic.
Stories Compiled by Senior Scientific Writer Regina Kelder