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Attention

Covid much less deadly says new study

COVID Virus
© Sebastian Rushworth.com/
An article was recently published in the British Medical Journal that reported on a matched cohort study which compared the risk of dying for those infected with the new British variant (a.k.a. B.1.1.7) and those infected with the older covid variants.

A matched cohort study is a type of observational study where you take a group of people with some condition and then try to find a similar group without the condition to match against. Then you follow the two cohorts over time and see if they differ in some meaningful outcome (like death). Since it is an observational study, it can only show correlation. It can't prove the existence of a cause and effect relationship, but that doesn't stop many people acting like it does.

The article has resulted in fear-mongering headlines in news media around the world. Just to take the first example I could find, Al-Jazeera published an article with the headline: "UK variant up to 100% deadlier more deadly, study finds".

Those darn studies, they're always finding things. It's like a never-ending game of whack-a-mole. You knock one down here, and another one pops up over there. Anyway, let's look in to the study some detail, and see if the claim is true.

There were two criteria that had to be fulfilled for a person to be included in the study. They had to have a PCR-test positive for covid at some point between the beginning of October 2020 and the end of January 2021. And they had to be over 30 years old. The authors don't provide any reason for the second criterion. The only reason I can see for removing people under the age of 30 is that they pretty much never die when they get covid, and including them would therefore have resulted in less impressive mortality numbers, which would have made it a little bit harder to use the results as part of public fear mongering campaigns.

Health

Lab-created heart valves can grow with the recipient

Heart Valve
© Syedain, et al., Tranquillo Lab, University of Minnesota
In a groundbreaking study, University of Minnesota researchers used a hybrid of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine to create heart valves that can grow with the recipient. When implanted in lambs, researchers showed that the tri-tube valves worked better than current animal-derived valves with almost none of the calcification or blood clotting that the other valves showed.
A groundbreaking new study led by University of Minnesota Twin Cities researchers from both the College of Science and Engineering and the Medical School shows for the first time that lab-created heart valves implanted in young lambs for a year were capable of growth within the recipient. The valves also showed reduced calcification and improved blood flow function compared to animal-derived valves currently used when tested in the same growing lamb model.

If confirmed in humans, these new heart valves could prevent the need for repeated valve replacement surgeries in thousands of children born each year with congenital heart defects. The valves can also be stored for at least six months, which means they could provide surgeons with an "off the shelf" option for treatment.

The study was published today in Science Translational Medicine, an interdisciplinary medical journal by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The valve-making procedure has also been patented and licensed to the University of Minnesota startup company Vascudyne, Inc. (Stillwater, Minn.).

"This is a huge step forward in pediatric heart research," said Robert Tranquillo, the senior researcher on the study and a University of Minnesota professor in the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science. "This is the first demonstration that a valve implanted into a large animal model, in our case a lamb, can grow with the animal into adulthood. We have a way to go yet, but this puts us much farther down the path to future clinical trials in children. We are excited and optimistic about the possibility of this actually becoming a reality in years to come."

Magnify

No more anal probes? Non-invasive skin swabs are enough to quickly detect Covid-19, new study finds

patient swabbed
© Sebastien Bozon/AFP
Testing for COVID
In a breakthrough that will be welcomed across the globe, University of Surrey researchers claim to have developed a highly accurate Covid-19 test using non-invasive skin swab samples.

Much of the world population who have undergone Covid-19 tests have likely experienced the rather unpleasant polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, which, as many recipients attest, feels like the equivalent to having your brains scrambled like an egg or 'stabbed' given how far back in the throat and down the nose the swab must go. No penetration of the brain occurs in reality, however.

Authorities in China took things a few steps further and anally swabbed over one million Beijing residents for the more infectious UK variant of the coronavirus, insisting that the highly invasive method was more accurate than PCR tests.

In a new paper published by The Lancet's E Clinical Medicine, the researchers took sebum samples from 67 hospitalized patients, 30 of whom had tested positive for Covid-19 and 37 who had tested negative. Sebum is the fatty, oily, waxy substance produced by the body's sebaceous glands in areas such as the face, neck or back. Too little can cause dry, cracked skin while too much can cause various forms of acne.

The sebum samples were subjected to analysis via liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. The results were then combined with a statistical modeling technique called Partial Least Squares to differentiate Covid-positive and -negative patient samples.

SOTT Logo Radio

Objective:Health: Celebrity Health Advice - Who's Allowed to Say What?

O:H header
There's a certain level of satisfaction we tend to get from seeing celebrities get taken down a peg. Recently, Gwyneth Paltrow was scolded by the NHS for giving advice they didn't like about treating long Covid. Fair enough - Gwyneth can talk about how she's dealing with long Covid and the NHS can tell everyone her advice is bunk. Freedom of speech, and all that.

But the director of the NHS, Prof Stephen Powis in a statement not-so-sublty called on social media to censor celebrities from reporting on what they're doing for their health issues (specifically for Covid). This is where the problem comes in.

Do celebrities not have the right to tell people what they're doing for their health, be it for Covid, cancer or even general well-being? Are we not responsible adults making our own choices, with the right to whatever information we choose to consume? Do the rules change when the person is famous? What about for paid sponsors of health products?

Join us on this episode of Objective:Health as we delve into the murky realm of celebrity health advice - who's allowed to say what?


For other health-related news and more, you can find us on:

♥Twitter: https://twitter.com/objecthealth
♥Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/objecthealth/
♥Brighteon: https://www.brighteon.com/channel/objectivehealth
♥LBRY: https://lbry.tv/@objectivehealth:f

And you can check out all of our previous shows (pre YouTube) here:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16H-nK-N0ANdsA5JFTT12_HU5nUYRVS9YcQh331dG2MI/edit?usp=sharing

Running Time: 00:29:30

Download: MP3 — 27 MB


Syringe

Italy opens manslaughter case after teacher dies hours after getting AstraZeneca vaccine

Sandro Tognatti
© Facebook
Sandro Tognatti died hours after getting the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
Prosecutors in Italy have launched a manslaughter investigation after a music teacher there died hours after getting the controversial AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.

Sandro Tognatti, 57, got jabbed in his hometown of Biella on Saturday afternoon and went to bed that night with a high fever, his wife, Simona Riussi, told Italian media.

She called an ambulance the next morning but the clarinetist could not be saved, she said.

Comment: See also:


Attention

Is covid the most deadly infectious disease in a century?

hospital
A new report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) was all over the papers on Monday afternoon making the striking claim that COVID-19 caused more deaths last year in England and Wales than other infectious diseases have caused in any year for more than a century.

Here is the story in the Mail.
The ONS report, entitled "Coronavirus: A Year Like No Other", was released to mark the one year anniversary of people in the UK first being told to limit their non-essential contact with others and to stop all unnecessary travel.

The report confirmed that COVID-19 caused more deaths last year than other infectious diseases caused in any year for more than 100 years.

More than 140,000 people have died in the UK with coronavirus either described as the underlying cause or as a contributory cause on their death certificates.

Some 73,500 people in England and Wales who died in 2020 had COVID-19 registered as the underlying cause of death.

The ONS said coronavirus is "likely to be classed as an infectious and parasitic disease", allowing a comparison with previous deadly outbreaks.

The statistics body said: "This means COVID-19 was the underlying cause of more deaths in 2020 than any other infectious and parasitic diseases had caused in any year since 1918; that year there were just over 89,900 deaths from various infectious and parasitic diseases registered in England and Wales."

Comment: See also: Coronavirus - Lies, damned lies and statistics


Syringe

Is Gardasil vaccine linked to record birth rate declines?

vaccine shot

Birth rates in the U.S. started their decline in 2006 — the same year the CDC recommended every American girl between the ages of 9 and 26 get Merck's Gardasil HPV vaccine.


A CBS News story earlier this week sounded a recurring alarm about the record decline of birth rates in the U.S.

The news agency obtained records from health departments in more than two dozen states showing a 7% drop in births in December 2020 — nine months after the first lockdowns began.

Comment: See also:


Syringe

The EU-AstraZeneca row: a complete timeline

Ursula von der Leyen
© Getty Images
Oh dear. This morning Sweden has become the latest European country to suspend use of the AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine. It follows reports that some people have suffered blood clots after being given the jab despite AstraZeneca's data showing there have only been 37 such reports among the 17m people across Europe who have been given the vaccine.

Yet while some European health ministries across the continent are raising concerns about its effectiveness, others are lambasting AstraZeneca for failing to deliver enough jabs. French Europe Minister Clement Beaune appeared on Radio Classique this morning and raised the prospect of the EU actually suing the company over breach of contract. Citing lower-than-expected deliveries, he claimed: 'Europe is not going to be some sort of cuddly 'care bear' that hands over its money and then expects nothing in return.'

Comment: See also:


People 2

Giving teens cross-sex hormones causes premature aging

trans flag youth
Most of us who hit our 40s will find our bodies slowing down, accumulating aches, or suffering a new chronic health condition. Even if our health wasn't great before, middle age is full of reminders that one's own peak of youthful bloom is over.

Our parents, if they're still with us, have probably started to need more help. They may come back from doctors' appointments with complicated diagnoses, and even more complicated prescriptions. They're a little more tired than they used to be, and they often don't tell us the half of it, to spare our feelings.

The inevitable decline of the body is difficult to live with, but we put up with it until we can't. It beats the alternative.

Comment: And if you try to spread the word about the dangers of puberty blockers you'll be attacked - literally. From The Post Millennial:
Chris Elston, an activist who lives in Vancouver and has been travelling to campaign against giving puberty blockers to children, was attacked by a group on a downtown Montreal street on Friday night.

...

He has been a vocal opponent of the SOGI 1 2 3 curriculum in his native BC and has started travelling around the country to raise awareness about how children are, according to him, having their lives ruined by drugs and sometimes even surgery at very young ages.

"I was having peaceful conversations on Saint-Catherine Street, joined by a local man. A bunch of these thugs suddenly swarmed me, I'm told there were about 7."

"I took one punch to the face and one right hook to the back of my head from that big guy, but I'm hard-headed so no worries. For the record, I did not fight back. I don't need police arresting me again for defending myself."

Apparently at the end of the day, the injuries were more severe than Elston initially thought:

"My left forearm is broken, but I feel worse for my new friend who came out to support. He took a blow and had his expensive watch broken."

Later, Elston continued tweeting:

"I've got a messed up forearm, a fat lip, and a popped vein in my hand, but this is nothing compared to what's happening to children across this country. If criminals think an assault is going to slow me down, they're dead wrong. Children Cannot Consent to Puberty Blockers!"

Elston has spoken to local police to give them details of the attack, and believes that it was premeditated. One can indeed see a mustard bottle used by one attacker in the video. Police are reviewing CCTV footage from the area.

"And in case anyone is wondering, this was a premeditated attack. They even came with a mustard squirt bottle. I 'think' they jumped out of 1 or 2 cars but they were on us in a heartbeat. Never seen them in my life. All is good! Stay positive! We're spreading awareness!"

Elston goes to Toronto tomorrow for further interviews and vows to continue with his activism, saying that he "doesn't need to arms to have a conversation."

Elston went on to say in a statement:

"I think these violent people think that through their violent actions they're going to succeed in silencing people and it's not going to work. More and more people are coming out with me now, so I think we'll be safer. But I'm not going to let them silence me. We have thousands of kids coming to harm and our government is going a thousand miles an hour in the wrong direction."

...



Info

Researchers find key to preventing killer allergic reactions - embedded in our own immune systems.

Immune System
© Beacon Pace
Researchers have discovered a function in the immune system that could hold the key to treating allergic conditions like asthma and stop life-threatening anaphylaxis.

Experts from The Australian National University (ANU) have unearthed a natural way the body prevents autoimmune disease and allergies. The process is driven by a protein in the body called neuritin.

"We found this absolutely fascinating mechanism of our own bodies that stops the production of rogue antibodies that can cause either autoimmunity or allergies," senior author, ANU Professor Carola Vinuesa, said.

"It's been known for years that neuritin has a role in the brain and in the nervous system but we found an abundance of neuritin in the immune system and its mechanism - which has never been described in biology.

"We have shown it is one of our immune system's own mechanisms to prevent autoimmunity and allergy and now we have the evidence, we can go on to harness that for treatment."

The researchers say they set out over five years ago to bridge a knowledge gap on how the immune system works following an educated guess that neuritin might have a regulatory function in stopping allergies and autoimmune disease.

The study, published today in Cell, found neuritin can prevent the production of pathogenic antibodies.