I study coronavirus in a highly secured biosafety lab – here's why I feel safer here than in the world outside

To find a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, scientists need to work hands-on with the highly infectious coronavirus. It happens in a super secure lab designed to keep them safe and prevent any escapes.

Troy Sutton, Assistant Professor of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Pennsylvania State University • conversation
June 17, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: covid-19 coronavirus pandemic vaccines sars-cov-2 scientific-research pathogens vaccine-research security biosecurity

How the coronavirus escapes an evolutionary trade-off that helps keep other pathogens in check

Pathogens typically face a trade-off between virulence and transmission. But that's not the case with SARS-CoV-2.

Joe Alcock, Professor of Emergency Medicine, University of New Mexico • conversation
June 17, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: covid-19 coronavirus pandemic transmission sars-cov-2 2019-ncov viruses pathogens infections

What the archaeological record reveals about epidemics throughout history – and the human response to them

People have lived with infectious disease throughout the millennia, with culture and biology influencing each other. Archaeologists decode the stories told by bones and what accompanies them.

Michael Westaway, Australian Research Council Future Fellow, Archaeology, School of Social Science, The University of Queensland • conversation
June 15, 2020 ~11 min

Tags: infectious-diseases covid-19 coronavirus archaeology pandemic skeletons plague sars-cov-2 outbreak disease pathology 1918-flu-pandemic black-death pathogens disease-spread pathogen skeleton bioarchaeology

Can algae-based nasal spray prevent COVID-19?

The nasal spray won't replace future COVID-19 vaccines, but could offer a first defense for people at high risk for contracting the virus, researchers say.

Amerigo Allegretto-Pitt • futurity
May 7, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: covid-19 plants viruses pathogens health-and-medicine

How people react to the threat of disease could mean COVID-19 is reshaping personalities

Human psychology has evolved to avoid situations that could lead to infection. Behavioral choices now could have long-term effects on how people interact with others and the world.

Vivian Zayas, Associate Professor of Psychology, Cornell University • conversation
May 4, 2020 ~10 min

Tags: infectious-diseases covid-19 coronavirus immune-system psychology sars-cov-2 disease anthony-fauci infection pathogens germs personality diseases disgust pathogen health-behaviors behavior

Coronavirus: three misconceptions about how animals transmit diseases debunked

Zoonotic diseases can emerge closer to home than you realise.

Olivier Restif, Alborada Lecturer in Epidemiology, University of Cambridge • conversation
April 16, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: covid-19 coronavirus ebola wildlife pathogens zoonotic-diseases bush-meat zoonotic-viruses bird-flu wet-markets

Coronavirus: three misconceptions about how wildlife transmit diseases debunked

Zoonotic diseases can emerge closer to home than you realise.

Olivier Restif, Alborada Lecturer in Epidemiology, University of Cambridge • conversation
April 16, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: covid-19 coronavirus ebola wildlife pathogens zoonotic-diseases bush-meat zoonotic-viruses bird-flu wet-markets

On the front lines of developing a test for the coronavirus

A virus testing lab director explains how the U.S. fell behind in the need for broad coronavirus testing.

David Pride, Associate Director of Microbiology, University of California San Diego • conversation
March 16, 2020 ~8 min

Tags:  covid-19  coronavirus  viruses  covid-19-testing  pathogens  virology  coronavirus-test

Ancient ‘gum’ reveals 5,000-year-old DNA

Researchers have extracted a whole human genome from 5,700-year-old "chewing gum." It could mark a new untapped source of ancient DNA.

Cecilie Krabbe-Copenhagen • futurity
Dec. 17, 2019 ~5 min

Tags: dna food genomes pathogens science-and-technology ancient-history stone-age

Common cold virus sneaks in to infect placenta

The placenta acts as a gatekeeper during pregnancy, but a study that shows how RSV can infect the fetus suggests it's not as impenetrable as once thought.

Keith Brannon-Tulane • futurity
Dec. 3, 2019 ~2 min

Tags: placenta pregnancy pathogens infections health-and-medicine rsv

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