All gatherings pose virus spread risk

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Gatherings large and small are likely to blame for a slight uptick in daily coronavirus cases in California’s largest county, according to a top health official who warned Monday that upcoming holiday parties pose a risk for renewed spread and a spike in hospitalizations.



FILE - In this Oct. 11, 2020, file photo, Los Angeles Lakers fans celebrate outside of Staples Center in Los Angeles, after the Lakers defeated the Miami Heat in Game 6 of basketball's NBA Finals to win the championship. Gatherings large and small are likely to blame for a slight uptick in daily coronavirus cases in California's largest county. That's according to a top Los Angeles County health official who warned Monday, Nov. 2, 2020, that upcoming holiday parties pose a risk for the renewed spread and a spike in hospitalizations. (AP Photo/Christian Monterrosa, File)


© Provided by Associated Press
FILE – In this Oct. 11, 2020, file photo, Los Angeles Lakers fans celebrate outside of Staples Center in Los Angeles, after the Lakers defeated the Miami Heat in Game 6 of basketball’s NBA Finals to win the championship. Gatherings large and small are likely to blame for a slight uptick in daily coronavirus cases in California’s largest county. That’s according to a top Los Angeles County health official who warned Monday, Nov. 2, 2020, that upcoming holiday parties pose a risk for the renewed spread and a spike in hospitalizations. (AP Photo/Christian Monterrosa, File)

There’s been a steady increase in the number of residents of Los Angeles County who have been getting together with people from outside their households, according to weekly survey data from the University of Southern California Center for Social and Economic Research.

That may be partly because of championship runs by the Los Angeles Lakers and Dodgers in recent weeks that brought fans together through watch parties and celebrations.

“With our case numbers already on the rise, we are concerned about the upcoming holiday gatherings and cooler weather, where people are more likely to gather indoors are perfect conditions for spreading COVID-19,” said Barbara Ferrer, the county’s public health director. “And while it’s easy to believe that the virus won’t spread among your family and friends, and that none of you are infected, there are so many examples that prove otherwise.”

For the week ending Oct. 20, more than 10% of respondents reported that they’d been at a gathering of 10 or more people in the past seven days, Ferrer said. She warned that if just 10% of Los Angeles County’s 10 million residents attended a gathering outside their households, that translates to about a million people.

“And if we assume that 2% of people can be infected, we could possibly have 20,000 people capable of infecting others who are milling about at these gatherings, each week,” she said.

Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous, reported more than 1,400 new cases Monday for a total of 310,595. There have been more than 7,000 deaths in the county.

The state is moving more slowly than the reopening last spring that brought with it a dramatic spike in cases, hospitalizations and deaths. California, the most populous state, is second in the nation with more than 930,600 confirmed cases. There have been a total of 17,672 deaths in the state.

Statewide hospitalizations have increased by about 11% in the last week to 2,537 while the seven-day daily average is 4,231 confirmed cases, down about 1% from previous week.

Many businesses remain closed as Los Angeles County remains in California’s most restrictive tier, purple.

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Global Medical Marijuana Market Demand to Show Superior Growth Despite the Spread of COVID-19

The medical marijuana market is poised to grow by USD 22.33 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of over 24% during the forecast period.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201102005680/en/

Technavio has announced its latest market research report titled Global Medical Marijuana Market 2020-2024 (Graphic: Business Wire)

Technavio suggests three forecast scenarios (optimistic, probable, and pessimistic) considering the impact of COVID-19. Download Free Sample Report on COVID-19 Recovery Analysis

The report on the medical marijuana market provides a holistic update, market size and forecast, trends, growth drivers, and challenges, as well as vendor analysis.

The report offers an up-to-date analysis regarding the current global market scenario, the latest trends and drivers, and the overall market environment. The market is driven by the increasing production of medical marijuana.

The medical marijuana market analysis includes application and geography landscape. This study identifies the increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana as one of the prime reasons driving the medical marijuana market growth during the next few years.

This report presents a detailed picture of the market by the way of study, synthesis, and summation of data from multiple sources by an analysis of key parameters

The Medical Marijuana Market covers the following areas:

Medical Marijuana Market Sizing

Medical Marijuana Market Forecast

Medical Marijuana Market Analysis

Companies Mentioned

  • Aphria Inc.

  • Aurora Cannabis Inc.

  • Cannabis Sativa, Inc.

  • Canopy Growth Corp.

  • Cronos Group Inc.

  • GW Pharmaceuticals Plc

  • mCig Inc.

  • Medical Marijuana, Inc.

  • United Cannabis Corp.

  • Vivo Cannabis, Inc.

     

Key Topics Covered:

PART 01: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

PART 02: SCOPE OF THE REPORT

PART 03: MARKET LANDSCAPE

PART 04: MARKET SIZING

PART 05: FIVE FORCES ANALYSIS

PART 06: MARKET SEGMENTATION BY APPLICATION

  • Market segmentation by application

  • Comparison by application

  • Chronic pain – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Nausea – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Others – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Market opportunity by application

PART 07: CUSTOMER LANDSCAPE

PART 08: GEOGRAPHIC LANDSCAPE

  • Geographic segmentation

  • Geographic comparison

  • North America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Europe – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • APAC – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • South America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • MEA – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Key leading countries

  • Market opportunity

PART 09: DECISION FRAMEWORK

PART 10: DRIVERS AND CHALLENGES

  • Market drivers

  • Market challenges

PART 11: MARKET TRENDS

  • Increasing number of awareness campaigns

  • Launch of medical marijuana education programs

  • Increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana

PART 12: VENDOR LANDSCAPE

  • Overview

  • Landscape disruption

  • Competitive scenario

PART 13: VENDOR ANALYSIS

PART 14: APPENDIX

PART 15: EXPLORE TECHNAVIO

About Us

Technavio is a leading global technology research and advisory company. Their research and analysis focuses on emerging market trends and provides actionable insights to help businesses identify market opportunities and develop effective strategies to optimize their market positions. With over 500 specialized analysts, Technavio’s report library consists of more than 17,000 reports and counting, covering 800 technologies, spanning across 50 countries. Their client base consists of enterprises of all

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5 things states must do to curb the spread of COVID-19: ANALYSIS

The dreaded fall and winter COVID-19 wave has arrived and with a vengeance. Much of the nation is experiencing a viral load of infections unlike those previously seen since the start of the pandemic.

Any one metric by itself doesn’t fully relay the significance of the threat, but coupling it with multiple metrics, like the number of daily new cases, percent positivity rate, infection rate, hospitalization rate and deaths, provide a more complete burden of the illness.

There are 50 epidemics playing out in the United States, each state with its own trajectory and prognosis. Only two states, Maine and Vermont, are trending in the right direction, having control on their epidemic, the remaining 48 states are all trending in the wrong direction.

To curb the spread of COVID-19, these are five measures that must be taken to prevent further amplification of cases, illnesses, hospitalizations and death.

1. Mandate face masks

The verdict is in, masks work. In a study published in Health Affairs, mask mandates in 15 states and the District of Columbia led to a slower daily COVID-19 growth rate that was seen over time.

Currently across the nation, 49% of Americans wear a mask in public, with only some states mandating wearing a face covering. If we increase this to 95%, we could save 129,000 lives, the study said.

PHOTO: A 'masks required' sign is seen at Belmont University near the entrance of the 2020 U.S. presidential election debate hall on Oct. 21, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images)
PHOTO: A ‘masks required’ sign is seen at Belmont University near the entrance of the 2020 U.S. presidential election debate hall on Oct. 21, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images)

2. Better risk communication on preventative measures

Communication can make or break any medical response. Countries, like those in Asia, that have been able to curtail the spread of COVID-19 have showcased effective risk communication with the general public — that is — telling the public in layman’s terms the good, the bad, the ugly and what we don’t know yet.

MORE: Massachusetts’ COVID-19 response was science-based, so why are cases rising?

Even more important is saying it with one voice, not mixed messages that erodes trust. During a time when many Americans are experiencing pandemic fatigue, are confused about the evolving science of COVID-19 and want to resume pre-pandemic activities, providing coherent, consistent and reliable guidance has never been more important.

Reliable guidance includes communicating what constitutes low-risk activities (outdoor events) versus high-risk activities (indoors, confined space and poor ventilation), as well as reminding people to stay home when sick, and continue physical distancing and hand-washing.

3. Surveillance at the local level

Early in this pandemic, the nation was blinded by the number of COVID-19 cases that were brewing in our communities. Fast forward 10 months, and we’ve learned a lot about this disease and the various indicators that can help track and trace where the virus is spreading.

PHOTO: A health care worker beckons incoming cars at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site inside the Alliant Energy Center complex, as the outbreak continues in Madison, Wis., Oct. 31, 2020. (Bing Guan/Reuters)
PHOTO: A health care worker beckons incoming cars at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site inside the Alliant Energy Center complex, as the outbreak continues in Madison, Wis., Oct. 31, 2020. (Bing Guan/Reuters)

Each

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Fitness devices ‘could curb the spread of Covid-19’

Wearing a fitness device could help the battle to control the spread of Covid-19.



a hand holding a cellphone


© Steve Brookland/Westend61/Cover Images


Scientists from the Scripps Research Translational Institute believe using a mobile app to collect activity from consenting adults may slow down the global pandemic. The DETECT Study was launched in March and has concluded that wearable devices like the Fitbit could identify Covid-19 symptoms including changes in heart rate, sleep, and activity levels.

“What’s exciting here is that we now have a validated digital signal for Covid-19. The next step is to use this to prevent emerging outbreaks from spreading,” said Eric Topol, MD, director and founder of the Scripps Research Translational Institute. “Roughly 100 million Americans already have a wearable tracker or smartwatch and can help us; all we need is a tiny fraction of them – just 1 per cent or 2 per cent – to use the app.”

Adults living in the U.S. have been invited to participate in the study by downloading the research app MyDataHelps, which will gather diagnostic health changes and also ask people to report any symptoms they may be experiencing. Changes detected by the fitness device will be analysed to see if they are outside of the individual’s normal range for sleep, resting heart rate, or activity level.

“One of the greatest challenges in stopping Covid-19 from spreading is the ability to quickly identify, trace and isolate infected individuals,” explained study author Giorgio Quer, PhD, director of artificial intelligence at Scripps Research Translational Institute. “Early identification of those who are pre-symptomatic or even asymptomatic would be especially valuable, as people may potentially be even more infectious during this period. That’s the ultimate goal.”

Experts are hoping a predictive model may eventually be able to identify coronavirus hotspots early.

More than 30,500 people had agreed to take part in the study as of 7 June, and scientists are hoping to get at least 100,000 individuals to participate.

The study was published in Nature Medicine.

Source Article

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Task force sees ‘unrelenting’ COVID-19 spread; daily U.S. cases up by record 91,000

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House coronavirus task force warned that much of the country is in the grips of an “unrelenting” surge in COVID-19 cases and urged tough countermeasures, as the number of U.S. infections reported on Thursday hit a new daily record of more than 91,000.

FILE PHOTO: Healthcare workers wearing powered air purifying respirator (PAPR) hoods process COVID-19 test samples at a drive-thru testing site operated by Avera Health inside the former Silverstar Car Wash, as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, U.S., October 28, 2020. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo

The hardest-hit regions in the West and Midwest encompass a number of battleground states expected to play a pivotal role in Tuesday’s U.S. presidential election contest between Republican incumbent Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger, Joe Biden.

“We are on a very difficult trajectory. We’re going in the wrong direction,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, a leading task force member and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said coronavirus cases were on the rise in 47 states, and patients were overwhelming hospitals across the country.

“If things do not change, if they continue on the course we’re on, there’s gonna be a whole lot of pain in this country with regard to additional cases and hospitalizations, and deaths,” Fauci said in a CNBC interview on Wednesday night.

The White House coronavirus task force has warned states in the middle and western parts of the country that aggressive measures will be necessary to curb the virus’ spread, according to weekly state reports seen by CNN.

“We continue to see unrelenting, broad community spread in the Midwest, Upper Midwest and West. This will require aggressive mitigation to control both the silent, asymptomatic spread and symptomatic spread,” one state’s report said.

The ominous assessment was echoed on Thursday by Dr. Ashish Jha, Brown University’s dean of public health, who told Reuters, “things are very, very bad in the United States right now.”

“We are having some of the largest breakouts that we’ve had during the entire pandemic,” he said, adding that the initial waves of infections last spring were more localized.

“And nine, 10 months into this pandemic, we are still largely not quite prepared.”

At least a dozen states – Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio and Oregon – reported record one-day increases in COVID-19 cases on Thursday, according to a Reuters tally.

Seventeen states reported a record number of hospitalizations, a metric that has soared across the country and is independent of how much testing is being done.

Nationally, health authorities on Thursday confirmed 91,248 more people tested positive for COVID-19 over the past 24 hours, the highest single-day increase in cases reported to date, according to a Reuters tally. The previous 24-hour record tally was 84,169 cases, set just last Friday.

The number of Americans hospitalized with COVID-19 stood at

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School Event Occurs Despite COVID Outbreak, Causes Montco Spread

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, PA — While the fall coronavirus surge is chiefly attributed to cooler weather and more time spent indoors, officials say that decisions made by both institutions and individuals have also been instrumental in foiling suppression.

One string of cases in Montgomery County was traced to a recent recreational event which was held at a private school in Philadelphia. The event occurred even though school officials and participating students knew of a recent outbreak in the school.

>>Montco Warns Of ‘Exponential’ COVID Surge, Hospitalizations Rise

A student from Montgomery County attended the event, and became contagious without showing symptoms, according to Commissioner Val Arkoosh. Not knowing he was infected, he attended a different recreational event in Montgomery County days later, passing the virus on to at least five adults.

Two of those five adults were coaches of youth sports teams, Arkoosh said. Those two coaches then spread it to children on their teams.

“This is an illustration of quickly this can spread, how individuals who are contagious, who don’t have symptoms, can infect a number of individuals,” Arkoosh said. “And how those individuals can continue to spread the virus.”

The county did not specify the nature of the event in Philadelphia or provide details on where the spread occurred in this instance in Montgomery County. But transmission has been everywhere, especially in schools that have reopened.

There have been a total of 564 “close contacts” with the virus in schools that have reopened across the county thus far this school year, officials said Wednesday. They did not say how many of those individuals had tested positive.

The number was a result of the county’s robust contact tracing program. A close contact is defined as any student who is within six feet of a student who is infected.

Where these contacts take place largely depends on the school. Many schools are large enough, or have been able to plan their reopens carefully enough, that students are almost always six feet away from one another in classrooms.

However, there are many places where this is impossible. One infected student could easily become a “close contact” for dozens throughout a single school day, officials note.

This article originally appeared on the Norristown Patch

Source Article

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White House advisers warn COVID-19 spread in Midwest and West is ‘unrelenting’

The White House Coronavirus Task Force has reportedly warned of a “persistent and broad spread” of COVID-19 infections across the U.S. West, advocating stricter prevention efforts to help slow the spread of transmission, per Reuters.

“We are on a very difficult trajectory. We’re going in the wrong direction,” Anthony Fauci, the most prominent task force member, said.


PROPOSAL TO LET CORONAVIRUS SPREAD NATURALLY THROUGH US POPULATION INTERESTS WHITE HOUSE, ALARMS MEDICAL ESTABLISHMENT

EUROPE REENTERS LOCKDOWNS AS COVID-19 CASES SURGE

THE FIRST DEATH FROM A CORONAVIRUS REINFECTION HAS BEEN REPORTED

US SENATOR TOOK OFF MASK REPEATEDLY ON FLIGHT. HE CHAIRS COMMITTEE THAT OVERSEES AIRLINE SAFETY


Data reveal that cases are high and remaining high in states like Wisconsin, Montana, Wyoming, North and South Dakota, Utah, Iowa, Tennessee, Arkansas and Minnesota, among dozens of others. Many of these states are key battleground states that have potential to determine the outcome of the competitive election between incumbent President Trump and Democratic candidate Joe Biden.

Fauci confirmed that new cases are increasing in 47 states, along with hospitalizations.

Wisconsin, in particular, is on track to run out of intensive care unit beds.

“Every single positive increases the probability or likelihood of having another patient who is hospitalized,” Bill Melms, chief medical officer for Marshfield Clinic Health System, told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

On a national level, the two-week change in new cases is up by 41 percent, with fatalities increasing by nine percent on average. 

Roughly 1,016 new COVID-19 deaths and 81,457 new cases were reported on Oct. 28, per The New York Times.

“We continue to see unrelenting, broad community spread in the Midwest, Upper Midwest and West. This will require aggressive mitigation to control both the silent, asymptomatic spread and symptomatic spread,” one state report said.

A nationwide lockdown has still not been issued, and some states do not have a mandatory mask order, such as Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, North and South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming. Most of these states are experiencing surges in new cases.


KANSAS’S COVID-19 POSITIVITY RATE SURPASSES 20 PERCENT

MOST VOTERS BELIEVE THE CORONAVIRUS IS OUT OF CONTROL IN THE US, POLL SAYS

CDC ‘STRONGLY RECOMMENDS’ ALL PASSENGERS ON PLANES, TRAINS, BUSES WEAR MASKS TO SLOW SPREAD OF COVID-19

THE COMING WEEKS WILL BE ‘DARKEST OF THE ENTIRE PANDEMIC,’ INFECTIOUS DISEASES EXPERT SAYS

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Iowa doctors say virus spread risks overwhelming hospitals

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa’s number of coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations continued to surge higher Wednesday as medical professionals have begun to express concern that hospitals could be overwhelmed with patients if no action is taken to slow the virus spread.

Iowa hospitals had 596 coronavirus patients Wednesday, by far the highest number so far in Iowa. The 113 patients admitted in the past 24 hours also was the highest seen since the virus surfaced in Iowa in March. The number of patients needing intensive care unit services has also trended upward in the past month.

Iowa doctors and hospital officials are preparing for a system overrun by COVID patients by talking about how to transfer patients between hospitals and enacting surge plans that could turn non-hospital facilities into spots to handle any overflow.

“What we know is if the last four weeks are indicative of what happens over the next four weeks we will have the system overwhelmed,” said Suresh Gunasekaran, CEO of University Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. “If hospitalizations continue to increase at the exact same rate they have been for weeks, the math itself tells you that you run out of beds.”

University hospitals, the state’s only academic medical center, is often where other hospitals send patients with complex intensive care needs. It is seeing a significant volume of COVID-19 patients from around the state, Gunasekaran said.


He said Iowans need to understand that the coronavirus patient surge often displaces the ability to care for patients with other complex needs stemming from problems such as heart disease, cancer or neurological conditions.

State public health officials reported 1,814 new confirmed cases Wednesday and an additional 22 deaths for a total of 1,680.

Over the past two weeks, the rolling average number of daily new cases has increased by 249, an increase of nearly 23%, according to researchers from Johns Hopkins University. Iowa has averaged about 1,400 new cases a day for the past week.

“My take away from this is that things are bad but also they can and will likely get much worse because the number of new cases is just staggering,” said Dr. Rosanna Rosa, an infectious disease doctor with UnityPoint Health.

A spokesman for the Iowa Department of Public Health said the state is in regular, often daily, contact with health systems, hospitals and regional medical coordination centers to assess hospital capacity, staffing and resources.

“At this time, hospitals are reporting that they are able to manage the increased number of patients, and are prepared to implement surge plans to expand capacity if necessary,” spokesman Alex Carfrae wrote in an email.

He said staffing shortages can occur during times of seasonal illness or viral outbreaks and hospitals have a variety of solutions to maintain adequate staffing levels.

Rosa said a better public health approach would be to make it clear to Iowans that these illnesses and deaths are preventable, a point made in a recent report from the White House Coronavirus

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Close to ‘exponential spread’ in some parts of the US, former FDA official says

The country is facing another cycle of the Covid-19 pandemic, and it may be the hardest yet, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb said Monday.



a car parked on a city street filled with lots of traffic: People wait in their cars at a newly opened mega drive-thru site at SISD Student Activities Complex on July 21, 2020 in El Paso, Texas. As coronavirus deaths surge past 4000 in Texas, overwhelmed hospitals are being forced to plan for extra refrigerated storage to hold deceased patients. (Photo by Cengiz Yar/Getty Images)


© Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
People wait in their cars at a newly opened mega drive-thru site at SISD Student Activities Complex on July 21, 2020 in El Paso, Texas. As coronavirus deaths surge past 4000 in Texas, overwhelmed hospitals are being forced to plan for extra refrigerated storage to hold deceased patients. (Photo by Cengiz Yar/Getty Images)

“I think we’re right now at the cusp of what’s going to be exponential spread in parts of the country,” Gottlieb said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

“If we took aggressive steps right now, we could potentially forestall the worst of it, but we’re not going to do that,” because there’s a lot of fatigue and “policy resistance to taking strong action,” he said.

“We really have two or three months of the acute phase of this pandemic to get through,” he said. “This is going to be the hardest phase, probably.”

Worst number of cases yet

That’s as the country continues to report the most number of cases we’ve seen to date. The seven-day average of daily new cases reached an all-time high of 68,767 on Sunday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The previous record of 67,293 was set July 22.

“Unfortunately, I think the statement about ‘new record’ is going to be repeated over and over again in the days and weeks to come,” said Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health.

“I expect that those numbers will continue to climb. Hospitalizations are going to continue to climb.”

The abysmal week was marked by the two worst days of daily new cases reported since the pandemic began. More than 83,000 new cases were reported both Friday and Saturday, according to Johns Hopkins.

To be clear: This surge reflects an onslaught of new infections — not just increased testing, contrary to what skeptics claim.

“You know why we have cases? Because we test so much,” President Donald Trump claimed at a rally Saturday in North Carolina. “And in many ways, it’s good. And in many ways, it’s foolish.”

But the seven-day average of new Covid-19 cases has soared 23% in the past week, according to Johns Hopkins data. The seven-day average of new tests performed has risen only 2.87% over the past week, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

And we are long past the point of just urban, heavily populated areas being the only places hit hard. South Dakota’s test positivity rate is 23%, the state’s health department said Monday. That means of every 100 people tested, 23 have been infected. The World Health Organization in May advised governments not to reopen until test positivity rates were 5% or lower for at least 14 days.

States to receive 36.7 million rapid tests

The federal government is shipping 36.7 million rapid Covid-19 tests, and states should be

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Coronavirus may dull the body’s pain receptors, helping the unsuspecting spread it, study says

Rajesh Khanna; COVID-19
Rajesh Khanna; COVID-19

Rajesh Khanna (background) unidentified scientist in foreground Kris Hanning via University of Arizona

This article originally appeared here on Salon.com

A new study from University of Arizona Health Sciences found that SARS-CoV-2 (the virus which causes COVID-19) may actually have a pain-diminishing effect on those it infects, particularly in the initial phase of infection.

The finding may partially explain how the virus is able to so easily spread from people who think they are perfectly healthy, yet are actually pre-symptomatic. The study was published this month in the scientific journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain. 

Specifically, the researchers believe that the novel coronavirus co-opts a specific pain receptor in the body, effectively co-opting it and thus reducing the experience of pain in the body. 

While generally, less pain is better in medicine, the authors of this study note that this behavior by the virus is not necessarily a good thing. “A ‘silencing’ of pain via subversion of VEGF-A/NRP-1 [the receptor in question] signaling may underlie increased disease transmission in asymptomatic individuals,” the authors conclude. In other words, someone with the virus might feel well and fine thanks to the way the virus is co-opting their experience of pain. 

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“There are many people being infected with Covid across the globe and it comes to our realization, in the last few months or so, that there are some symptoms that people experienced that are affecting the nervous system,” Dr. Rajesh Khanna, lead author and corresponding author and professor of pharmacology at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center, told Salon. “People have been complaining of headaches, muscle pains, joint pain, brain fog, loss of taste and smell. All of these things have been coming and being recorded. And so what we’re adding to this litany of symptoms is the idea, in the initial stages, when you don’t have full blown COVID-19, when you’re perhaps asymptomatic or presymptomatic, you have this fact where the virus itself is giving you pain relief.”

He added, “So you’re feeling like you have no pain, which means that you are — quite wittingly, perhaps — spreading the virus. So that’s really the point of our finding, which is that you’re getting this unwanted or surreptitious kind of pain relief that’s being provided by this virus early on.”

If more studies bear out the findings of the Arizona researchers, it would constitute another way that the virus seems to cleverly encourage transmission before patients know that they are infected. 

Dr. Henry F. Raymond, an epidemiologist at the Rutgers School of Public Health, previously told Salon that the novel coronavirus appeared to be in a class of infectious disease that spread before the original infected person is aware of being infected. “Depending on the person someone could become infected with SARS-CoV2 and never exhibit symptoms but still shed virus in respiratory excretions,” Raymond told Salon. “We should assume there is potential asymptomatic spread and take the necessary precautions

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