Back to the Future New Normal – Part III

 When the News Had Spread, That Soon We’d All Be Dead

Bad news is never welcomed and we can’t predict when we receive them. Perhaps not always?  Maybe we have blinded our eyes and we dont’ want to see the whole truth behind all of this. There is no more time to go into “avoidance mode”. So, let’s take a deep breath, take a time to process and start to see the facts. We have to do our best and get on with life, even if it may change to worse…

The emergence and spread of Covid-19 was not only predictable, it was predicted [in the sense that] there would be another viral emergence from wildlife that would be a public health threat,” said Prof Andrew Cunningham, of the Zoological Society of London. A 2007 study of the 2002-03 SARS outbreak concluded: “The presence of a large reservoir of Sars-CoV-like viruses in horseshoe bats, together with the culture of eating exotic mammals in southern China, is a timebomb.

It’s almost always a human behaviour that causes it and there will be more in the future unless we change,” said Cunningham. Markets butchering live wild animals from far and wide are the most obvious example, he said.  “The animals have been transported over large distances and are crammed together into cages. They are stressed and immunosuppressed and excreting whatever pathogens they have in them,” he said. “With people in large numbers in the market and in intimate contact with the body fluids of these animals, you have an ideal mixing bowl for [disease] emergence. If you wanted a scenario to maximise the chances of [transmission], I couldn’t think of a much better way of doing it.”  A market in China is believed to have been the source of Covid-19.

Carrington, Damian. 2020. The Guardian. 25. 03. Coronavirus: ‘Nature is sending us a message’, says UN environment chief
Conculted on 30.6.2020

Coronavirus may have lain dormant across the world and emerged when the environmental conditions were right for it to thrive rather than starting in China, an Oxford University expert believes. Dr Tom Jefferson, senior associate tutor at the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine (CEBM), at Oxford and a visiting professor at Newcastle University, argues there is growing evidence that the virus was elsewhere before it emerged in Asia.

Dr Jefferson believes many viruses lie dormant throughout the globe and emerge when conditions are favourable, which also means they can vanish as quickly as they arrive. Spanish virologists announced that they had found traces of the disease in samples of waste water collected in March 2019, nine months before coronavirus was seen in China. Italian scientists have also found evidence of coronavirus in sewage samples in Milan and Turin in mid-December, many weeks before the first case was detected, while experts have found evidence of traces in Brazil in November. “I think the virus was already here – here meaning everywhere. We may be seeing a dormant virus that has been activated by environmental conditions.

Sarah Knapton, Science Editor. 2020. Telegraph . 05. 07. Covid-19 may not have originated in China, Oxford University expert believes
Consulted on 5.7.2020

SARS-CoV-2 was detected in Barcelona sewage long before the declaration of the first COVID-19 case, indicating that the infection was present in the population before the first imported case was reported. In early December 2019, COVID-19 originated in Wuhan, China, and reached thereafter many parts of the world, including Europe, where the first case was reported in France in late-January 2020. However, evidence points to the occurrence of cases in France already in late 2019. SARS-CoV-2 surveillance in sewage may be considered a sensitive tool to monitor the spread of the virus among the population. However, there is no epidemiological evidence that sewage could be a transmission route for SARS-CoV-2, through contamination of bathing areas or irrigation waters, because very few studies reports culture of infectious virus from stool. Most COVID-19 cases show mild influenza-like symptoms and it has been suggested that some uncharacterized influenza cases may have masked COVID-19 cases in the 2019-2020 season. 

Gemma Chavarria-Miro, Eduard Anfruns-Estrada, Susanne Guix, Miquel Papaira, Belen Galofre, Gloria Sanchez, Rosa M. Pinto, Albert Bosch. 2020. ”Sentinel surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater anticipated the occurance of CONVID-19 cases.” medRxiv, the reprint server for health sciences

Italy’s first domestic infections were not found until February. Sewage surveillance have shown that the corona-virus has been present in two major cities in northern Italy as early as December, more than two months before the first infection was found.  The Italian National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanita) (ISS) says traces of viruses were found in samples taken in Milan and Turin in December.

Ilta-Sanomat. 2020. Ilta-sanomat, Koronavirusta oli Italian suurissa kaupungeissa jo joulukuussa (STT/AFP). 19. 06.
Consulted on 6.7.2020

SARS-CoV-2 was detected in sewage 41 days (January 15) before the declaration of the first COVID-19 case (February 25), clearly evidencing the validity of wastewater surveillance to anticipate cases in the population. This SARS-CoV-2 early detection in sewage supports the idea that COVID-19 cases may have been present in the population before the first imported case was reported. COVID-19 carriers may have been misclassified as influenza diagnoses in primary care, boosting community transmission before public health measures were taken. Additionally, there is a significant proportion of asymptomatic carriers that shed SARS-CoV-2 and contribute to the virus spread.

Gemma Chavarria-Miro, Eduard Anfruns-Estrada, Susanne Guix, Miquel Papaira, Belen Galofre, Gloria Sanchez, Rosa M. Pinto, Albert Bosch. 2020. ”Sentinel surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater anticipated the occurance of CONVID-19 cases.” medRxiv, the reprint server for health sciences

Strange things like this happened with Spanish Flu. In 1918, around 30 per cent of the population of Western Samoa died of Spanish Flu, and they hadn’t had any communication with the outside world.  “The explanation for this could only be that these agents don’t come or go anywhere. They are always here and something ignites them, maybe human density or environmental conditions, and this is what we should be looking for.

Sarah Knapton, Science Editor. 2020. Telegraph . 05. 07. Covid-19 may not have originated in China, Oxford University expert believes
Consulted on 5.7.2020

“The good thing about science it that it’s true whether or not you believe in it”

Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson (Astrophysicist)

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Published by Toni Leikas

CBRN Officer (CPT.ret), CBRN Specialist. I'm always wondering, why so many makes and thinks that CBRN is rocket science? It's simple following few basic rules and common sense.

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