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  • Will New COVID Strain Dominate USA by March 2021? CDC says YES?

    It's really hard to believe that we will be dealing with more COVID throughout 2021 but according to several sources, including the CDC, we will be doing just that... battling COVID... again! New CDC modeling shows the new strain could cause more than half of new infections in this country by March, even as the U.S. races to deploy vaccines “It’s not necessarily what’s going to happen everywhere, but this is the kind of path that we expect to see,” said study author Michael Johansson, PhD, a member of the CDC’s COVID-19 Response Team. So far, there are just 76 known cases in the U.S., representing less than 0.3% of all COVID cases here. The CDC’s new modeling indicates the B.1.1.7 strain could account for a majority of COVID cases in the U.S. in March. In a “what if” scenario, the modeling shows total COVID cases surging again in late April, and reaching a peak of more than 200,000 cases a day if no one gets vaccinated.

  • COVID-19 hospitalizations increasing at Parkland in Dallas Texas

    COVID-19 hospitalizations increasing at Parkland The Dallas hospital is bracing for another major surge that could strain resources and push staff to their limits. DALLAS - Parkland Hospital says the number of COVID-19 patients it’s treating continues to rise. Parkland officials said Wednesday it has four COVID-19 units with 114 patient rooms that can expand to double occupancy. So we are full with our normal patients, with our normal ED visits, with our normal volumes and then on top of that we have COVID making it more complex,” Rowley said. The climate has changed too, with COVID-19 fatigue setting in.

  • Could a Judge Clay Jenkins Imposing COVID Curfew in Dallas be on the Horizon?

    #pandemic #lockdown #VarneyCo As of 2:00 pm October 26, 2020, Dallas County Health and Human Services is reporting 498 additional positive cases of 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Dallas County for a cumulative total of 93,939 confirmed cases (PCR test), including 1,101 co nfirmed deaths. We are using a method that absolutely kills COVID and has a long lasting affect by creating a barrier that eliminates health threats on contact. Get a free COVID surface test today.

  • Coronavirus Discovered in Frozen Food.

    Think about it, if someone is sick and they work in a plant and they are packaging frozen food it wouldn't be hard to contaminate the item because we know COVID loves the cold. During routine government testing recently, three samples from a northern China ice cream company came back positive for COVID-19. Perhaps we will see new food labels in the future stating "Covid Free" or "Covid tested"?

  • Opening Texas 100%': Gov. Abbott rescinds statewide face mask order, business restrictions (VIDEO)

    If COVID-19 hospitalizations stay above 15% for seven straight days, a county judge may use mitigation strategies in their county, such as face masks. Now is the right time for Texas to be fully reopened, Abbott said, because Texas has the ability to administer over 100,000 COVID-19 tests per day and there are antibody treatments. "The COVID-19 virus with variants is still here and we have not achieved herd immunity," Love said. "It's unfortunate that on a day we record 25 deaths, which takes us above 3,000 [COVID-19] deaths for Dallas County since COVID began nearly a year ago, the governor has removed all of the state orders that he designed to protect you and the people that you care about from contracting COVID," the judge said. While COVID-19 case and hospitalization numbers have been ticking down recently, declines are starting to plateau, according to federal officials and UT Southwestern models.

  • 7 New Virus Variants Found in U.S. Carrying the Same Mutation...

    7 Virus Variants Found in U.S. Carrying the Same Mutation Scientists agree that the mutation makes the variants more contagious... Scientists at Duke University sequenced positive coronavirus tests to identify which strains are circulating in the community. As Americans anxiously watch variants first identified in the United Kingdom and South Africa spread in the United States, scientists are finding a number of new variants that originated here. More concerning, many of these variants seem to be evolving in the same direction — potentially becoming contagious threats of their own. In a study posted on Sunday, a team of researchers reported seven growing lineages of the novel coronavirus, spotted in states across the country. All of them have evolved a mutation in the same genetic letter. “There’s clearly something going on with this mutation,” said Jeremy Kamil, a virologist at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport and a co-author of the new study. It’s unclear whether it makes the variants more contagious. But because the mutation appears in a gene that influences how the virus enters human cells, the scientists are highly suspicious. “I think there’s a clear signature of an evolutionary benefit,” Dr. Kamil said. The history of life is full of examples of so-called convergent evolution, in which different lineages follow the same path. Birds gained wings as they evolved from feathered dinosaurs, for example, just as bats did when they evolved from furry, shrew-like mammals. In both cases, natural selection gave rise to a pair of flat surfaces that could be flapped to generate lift — enabling bats and birds alike to take to the sky and fill an ecological niche that other animals could not. Charles Darwin first recognized convergent evolution by studying living animals. In recent years, virologists have found that viruses can evolve convergently, too. H.I.V., for example, arose when several species of viruses shifted from monkeys and apes to humans. Many of those lineages of H.I.V. gained the same mutations as they adapted to our species. As the coronavirus now branches into new variants, researchers are observing Darwin’s theory of evolution in action, day in and day out. Dr. Kamil stumbled across some of the new variants while he was sequencing samples from coronavirus tests in Louisiana. At the end of January, he observed an unfamiliar mutation in a number of samples. The mutation altered the proteins that stud the surface of the coronavirus. Known as spike proteins, they are folded chains of more than 1,200 molecular building blocks called amino acids. Dr. Kamil’s viruses all shared a mutation that changed the 677th amino acid. Investigating these mutant viruses, Dr. Kamil realized they all belonged to the same lineage. The earliest virus in the lineage dated back to Dec. 1. In later weeks, it grew more common. On the evening of his discovery, Dr. Kamil uploaded the genomes of the viruses to an online database used by scientists across the world. The next morning, he got an email from Daryl Domman of the University of New Mexico. He and his colleagues had just found the same variant in their state, with the same 677 mutation. Their samples dated back to October. The scientists wondered whether the lineage they had discovered was the only one to have a 677 mutation. Probing the database, Dr. Kamil and his colleagues found six other lineages that independently gained the same mutation on their own. Coronavirus Variants and Mutations Tracking recent mutations, variants and lineages. It’s difficult to answer even basic questions about the prevalence of these seven lineages because the United States sequences genomes from less than 1 percent of coronavirus test samples. The researchers found samples from the lineages scattered across much of the country. But they can’t tell where the mutations first arose. The Coronavirus Outbreak › It’s also hard to say whether the increase in variants is actually the result of their being more contagious. They might have become more common simply because of all of the travel over the holiday season. Or they might have exploded during superspreader events at bars or factories. Still, scientists are worried because the mutation could plausibly affect how easily the virus gets into human cells. The Coronavirus Outbreak › Let Us Help You Better Understand the Coronavirus Are coronavirus case counts rising in your region? Our maps will help you determine how your state, county or country is faring. Vaccines are rolling out and will reach many of us by spring. We’ve answered some common questions about the vaccines. Now that we are all getting used to living in a pandemic, you may have new questions about how to go about your routine safely, how your children will be impacted, how to travel and more. We’re answering those questions as well. So far, the coronavirus outbreak has sickened more than 106 million people globally. More than two million people have died. A timeline of the events that led to these numbers may help you understand how we got here. An infection begins when a coronavirus uses the tip of the spike protein to latch onto the surface of a human cell. It then unleashes harpoon-like arms from the spike’s base, pulling itself to the cell and delivering its genes. Before the virus can carry out this invasion, however, the spike protein has to bump into a human protein on the surface of the cell. After that contact, the spike becomes free to twist, exposing its harpoon tips. The 677 mutation alters the spike protein next to the spot where our proteins nick the virus, conceivably making it easier for the spike to be activated. Jason McLellan, a structural biologist at the University of Texas at Austin who was not involved in the study, called it “an important advance.” But he cautioned that the way that the coronavirus unleashed its harpoons was still fairly mysterious. “It’s tough to know what these substitutions are doing,” he said. “It really needs to be followed up with some additional experimental data.” Dr. Kamil and his colleagues are starting those experiments, hoping to see whether the mutation does indeed make a difference to infections. If the experiments bear out their suspicions, the 677 mutation will join a small, dangerous club. Convergent evolution has transformed a few other spots on the spike protein as well. The 501st amino acid has mutated in a number of lineages, for example, including the contagious variants first observed in the United Kingdom and South Africa. Experiments have revealed that the 501 mutation alters the very tip of the spike. That change allows the virus to latch onto cells more tightly, and infect them more effectively. Scientists anticipate that coronaviruses will converge on more mutations that give them an advantage — against not only other viruses but also our own immune system. But Vaughn Cooper, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Pittsburgh and a co-author of the new study, said lab experiments alone wouldn’t be able to reveal the extent of the threat. To really understand what the mutations are doing, he said, scientists will need to analyze a much bigger sampling of coronaviruses gathered from across the country. But right now, they can look at only a relatively meager number of genomes collected by a patchwork of state and university labs. “It’s ridiculous that our country is not coming up with a national strategy for doing surveillance,” Dr. Cooper said.

  • New Strain Of Covid-19 Emerged In England - Here Is What It Could Mean For Pandemic And Vaccine

    Farrar emphasized that there is a great deal left to learn about Covid-19, noting that “there is no room for complacency. Mutations are common and expected in viruses, especially ones that are moving around a new species like Covid-19. KEY BACKGROUND Understanding the genetic makeup of Covid-19 is crucial in designing and implementing an effective pandemic response. Deena Hinshaw, commented on the new variant of the virus that causes COVID-19 detected in the U.K., indicating that it may not be as significant as some may assume. Will COVID-19 vaccines be safe?

  • President Trump confirms he, first lady Melania Trump tested positive for coronavirus

    Conley, Physician to the President confirming President Trump and the First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19 President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump both tested positive for COVID-19 early Friday, and are set to quarantine and recover at the White House. “Tonight, @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19,” the president tweeted. Melania Trump also tweeted, "As too many Americans have done this year, @POTUS & I are quarantining at home after testing positive for COVID-19. Conley, confirmed Trump and the first lady’s positive COVID-19 tests. Symptoms of COVID-19 can include fever, cough and breathing trouble.

  • Coronavirus cases in Texas are soaring again. But this time Gov. Greg Abbott says no lockdown...

    This week, more than 7,400 Texans are hospitalized for COVID-19, and the positivity rate has exceeded 10% for over three weeks. “They’re assuming that all those licensed beds can somehow be utilized for a COVID-19 surge, and that’s simply not true,” Dr. “By using that number, that overestimates our capacity to handle COVID-19 patients.” He also noted that El Paso's share of hospital beds occupied by COVID-19 patients is several times Abbott's 15% trigger, but it's still artificially low because the county added 580 spots to its hospital capacity. “The protocols proved effective in slowing the spread over the summer and containing COVID-19, and they can continue to work, but only if they are enforced,” an Abbott spokesperson, Renae Eze, said in a statement for this story.

  • COVID-19 Scam Alerts BEWARE!!!!!

    03 Apr COVID-19 Scam Alerts in News by Taryn Porter Stay up to date on the latest Coronavirus scams! Full story from CBS Chicago BBB says scammers are targeting seniors during COVID-19 pandemic: The Better Business Bureau says seniors are being targeted by scammers who want to take advantage of the COVID-19 situation. Secretary of State warns of business owner scam amid COVID-19 crisis: Louisiana Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin warns business owners of scam circulating that takes advantage of business owners during the COVID-19 crisis. Full story from Hamilton Journal News 30 March 2020 60 and over in the time of COVID-19? Full blog from KnowBe4 Password found to rescue victims of malicious COVID-19 tracker app: COVID-19 Android Ransomware threat addressed by cybersecurity and IT community.

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