Virus Update

Virus Update, by David Archibald.

The virus has not been all bad for health issues in Australia.

The influenza infection rate and influenza deaths have collapsed in Australia, saving 800 lives per annum relative to the 2019 level of deaths.

The preterm birth rate halved in a Queensland hospital during lockdown, similar to the 66% reduction in obstetric emergencies in an Indian hospital system, a 90% reduction in Denmark and a 73% reduction in Ireland. The reason is likely to be that the presence of the father at home during lockdown lowers the mother’s stress.

Otherwise, all is proceeding as it was foreseen. Singapore has had transmission between fully mRNA-vaccinated people. Vaccines for the Wuhan virus are now considered to need booster shots every six months to keep up with the mutation of the virus. The spike protein of the vaccines also does its own damage with a cumulative effect.

The University of Oklahoma has found that the India variant (B.1.617.2) is about six times more resistant than other variants to the antibodies generated by vaccines.

Until a better vaccine technology is developed, combinations of antivirals are likely to provide a higher level of protection. Quoting Professor McCullough:

Just like with acute HIV and hepatitis C and other viral illnesses, we have to use multiple drugs in combination. What we found is it takes about 4 to 6 drugs to be used in combination. We leveraged small clinical trials and observational studies with the signal of benefit and acceptable safety.