Saturday, September 29, 2012

Part 5 - A Bioforming Pandemic: Is the Coronavirus the Final Piece of the Pandemic Puzzle?

By Aaron Hermann

As Bob pointed out in the
"Transition Update" post I am in a season of recovery, but there is much going on that needs to be presented. If you have been following this blog for a while and paying attention to this series you should be able to connect the dots I present here. Without further ado, lets get out our Holy Spirit Sharpies and get down to business.

* The WHO has not yet given the virus a name, but scientists at Britain's Health Protection Agency (HPA) refer to it as "London1_novel CoV 2012".

* Coronaviruses are typically spread like other respiratory infections, such as flu, travelling in airborne droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

* At this stage it is not clear where the virus came from. New infections can emerge from mutations to existing viruses, or be caught from infections circulating in the animal population. Human diseases that come from animal are called zoonoses.

Coronavirus: Mysterious New Virus Can Cause Fever, Cough, Breathing Problems

British health officials said today that a Rotterdam lab that first characterized the novel coronavirus linked recently to two severe illnesses hopes to publish the whole genome in the next 24 to 48 hours, and the UK's Health Protection Agency (HPA) launched guidance to help clinicians investigate and manage possible cases.

The HPA said in an update that the full genome sequence will be published by Ron Fouchier, PhD, based at Erasmus University in the Netherlands. The sequence will be based on cultured virus that has been at the lab since early July.

The HPA also issued a nine-page infection control resource for handling confirmed and suspected cases. It noted that coronaviruses are mainly transmitted by large respiratory droplets and direct or indirect contact with secretions. The agency also said the viruses can be detected in feces and urine and in some instances can be transmitted by aerosolized respiratory droplets and feces.

Full genome sequence of novel coronavirus expected shortly

Case 1
On [13 Jun 2012] a [60-year-old patient] presented with deteriorating pneumonia in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and a 7 day history of respiratory symptoms. The patient developed acute renal failure and died on [24 Jun 2012]. A novel beta-coronavirus was isolated and sequenced at the Erasmus Medical Centre (EMC) in Rotterdam, the Netherlands [1].

Case 2
On [11 Sep 2012] a [49-year-old patient] with severe respiratory symptoms was evacuated from Qatar to a United Kingdom hospital and was admitted to intensive care there on [12 Sep 2012]. The patient remains in hospital and has been on life support with pulmonary and renal failure. Extensive diagnostic tests for a causative agent were negative but on [21 Sep 2012] a pan-coronavirus RT-PCR test performed on lower respiratory samples was positive for a conserved sequence of the coronavirus polymerase gene.[2]

Comparison with the nucleotide sequence at the EMC indicated a close match with the novel virus isolated from Case 1. Contacts of Case 2, many of them healthcare workers, are being actively identified, monitored, and investigated for coronavirus infection. Some of them have reported mild respiratory symptoms but none have tested positive for the novel virus or developed severe disease to date [3].

Novel coronavirus associated with severe respiratory disease: case definition and public health measures

Researchers from the Erasmus University lab that first identified the novel coronavirus implicated in two severe infections have published its full genome sequence, which they and other European scientists used to develop two assays to help confirm any future infections.

The gene sequence is from virus samples that a Saudi Arabian doctor who treated the first patient sent to the Erasmus group in the Netherlands in July. The patient was a 60-year-old Saudi Arabian man who died after battling pneumonia and severe renal disease complications of his infection.

The Erasmus team has uploaded the sequence to GenBank and has termed the new virus hCoV-EMC, according to their report yesterday in Eurosurveillance...

Availability of diagnostic tests early in an epidemic is useful for the public health response, the group wrote. However, they noted that false-positive tests could hamper the development of risk assessments...

They wrote that they expected the case definition to evolve as more epidemiologic and diagnostic information becomes available...

Scientists sequence new coronavirus, develop diagnostic tests

As I mentioned before, if you have been following the blog and paying attention to this series you will be very familiar with Ron Fouchier, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam Lab, and the signaling numbers of "9-11", "9-12", and "9-21". There is much going on during this important season, and it is imperative that some of us know what is going on. May the Lord grant us all whatever it is we may need in this critically late hour to have and do all that He has for us. This is my prayer.

More to come, Lord willing.

By Aaron Hermann

Bob (theopenscroll@) and Aaron (theultimateplan@)

Please feel free to contact us through our Gmail accounts.

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