2021-08-20 General

Mitigation Measures

This article says that masking was responsible for a 68% reduction in transmissions and that regular testing got the reduction up to 77%.

This preprint looked at different mitigation measures in schools in Switzerland. Some highlights of the reductions in viral dosage they saw:

  • Keeping all the windows open in winter: 14x
  • Universal masking: 8x
  • One HEPA filter: 2.5x
  • Two HEPA filters: 4x
  • Natural ventilation, masks, and HEPA filtration: 30x


This article says that some Canadians have lost jobs because some entities (*cough* USA *cough*) don’t recognized mixed vaccines.

This preprint is highly technical and difficult for me to understand, but I think it’s saying that there’s a risk of antibody-dependent enhancement from the Delta strain. In other words, being vaccinated could make things worse. The obvious counter-argument to that is that in the real world, we don’t see vaccinated people faring worse than unvaccinated people.

There’s a preprint which came out of Oxford a few days ago which is very very dense, and I, in my foolishness, was trying to understand it all before I posted something about it. I give up. The preprint is basically good news, but go read this thread where someone dissects what is in the paper.

Disease Mechanisms

This preprint shows that levels of autoantibodies against interferons correlate somewhat with COVID-19 severity, and that sometimes people had those autoantibodies before COVID-19. (Reminder: autoantibodies are those which attack the body’s systems instead of the virus’ systems. Here’s an older, non-technical article which speculated that autoantibodies might be implicated.) I think that means that having certain types of autoantibodies makes COVID-19 worse.

This preprint found that a very rare genetic mutation associated with type 1 interferons was found in 1% of men with severe COVID-19.


This article says that the UK approved a new antibody cocktail which reduced the risk of hospitalization or death in high-risk, non-hospitalized patients by 70%. Also: it can be injected (vs. infused), which is a LOT easier.

Recommended Reading/Viewing

This movie shows the spike protein opening up, an important step to infecting. (This preprint explains what’s going on.)

This article talks about why Israel’s spike in cases, despite being heavily vaccinated.

This article talks about a mutation, P681R, in Delta that seems to be related to its greatly enhanced infectiousness. (There is more to it than that, however, because just making that one mutation to COVID-Classic doesn’t make COVID-Classic super-infectious.)