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Corona Virus News & Info

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From that no-credibility radical right-wing MAGA anti-vax rag...

A new drug to treat covid could create a breeding ground for mutant viruses​

Merck’s molnupiravir is good at one thing — and that’s what makes it scary​


The FDA approved the Merck antiviral drug molnupiravir on Thursday for treatment of covid-19. (AP)

Image without a caption

By Michael Z. Lin

Michael Z. Lin is a medical doctor and an associate professor of bioengineering and neurobiology at Stanford University. He conducts research on RNA viruses, including the development of antiviral drugs for covid-19.
Yesterday at 6:00 a.m. EST

On Thursday, the Food and Drug Administration made what may be the most momentous drug-approval decision in its history: It granted emergency-use authorization for Merck’s molnupiravir to treat covid-19. This approval is significant not because molnupiravir is an especially good drug, but because it is a rather ineffective and dangerous one. In particular, molnupiravir might create new variants of SARS-CoV-2 that evade immunity and prolong the pandemic.

The problem with molnupiravir lies in its mechanism of action. Unlike any previous antiviral drug, molnupiravir does only one thing: It introduces mutations into the viral genome. We are already familiar with the fact that viruses naturally mutate to evade immunity; the many mutations of the spike protein in omicron, for example, allow it to evade the antibodies created by prior infections or vaccines. Molnupiravir relies on inducing even more mutations so that eventually the virus’s proteins are damaged beyond function. That molnupiravir can mutate SARS-CoV-2 to death has been demonstrated in the controlled conditions of a petri dish and lab animal cages, leading Merck to test it in covid-19 patients in clinical trials.

The best-case scenario with omicron will still be bad

But people are not petri dishes or lab animals, and while molnupiravir works to some extent, it has not worked very well in covid-19 patients. Specifically, molnupiravir reduced hospitalizations by only 30 percent. In contrast, Pfizer’s antiviral drug Paxlovid, which works by a different mechanism and was also approved this week by the FDA, reduced hospitalization by 89 percent. (My lab does research on drugs using the same mechanism as Paxlovid — inhibition of the viral protease enzyme — independently of any company affiliations.) This means that most of the time that molnupiravir was given the opportunity, it failed to inhibit viral replication enough to allow the patient to avoid hospitalization.

Merck’s own research, published Thursday, explains why. It found that viable virus can still be detected in some patients on the third day of treatment with the drug. That means that for at least several days, the drug is in the body mutating the virus — but not all virus genomes have picked up enough mutations to die off. For those initial few days, then, the patient is a breeding ground for viable mutated viruses.

The first days of molnupiravir treatment present a clear opportunity for mutant viruses to be transmitted to family members or caregivers. Viral evolution is a process of selecting for rare mutations that are beneficial to the virus. It doesn’t matter if just one out of the billions of copies of viruses in an infected individual mutates to a higher level of fitness. That single copy, either by evading existing antibodies or replicating to yet higher levels of fitness, will become amplified either in that patient or in the next person infected.
The worst-case scenario is worrisome. As long as molnupiravir is in use somewhere in the world, it could generate repeated cycles of new variants, with people desperately taking the drug to fight the new variants it spawns, creating a vicious positive feedback loop while causing more suffering and deaths.

Molnupiravir’s low efficacy may come as no surprise, because drugs that only mutate a viral genome have never been tested before in people. By contrast, the previous antiviral medication capable of mutating viruses, ribavirin, also had direct effects, including blocking the viral replication enzyme and stimulating innate immunity — and that was with much less contagious viruses. We didn’t know how well a drug whose sole function is to introduce mutations could work against a highly contagious, rapidly replicating virus. Now we know: not very well.
Just mail covid tests to everyone? Absolutely. My government does it.

The FDA’s fact sheet for prescribers, also released Thursday, actually recognizes the risk that a mutated virus could escape. It says: “Completion of the full 5-day treatment course and continued isolation in accordance with public health recommendations are important to maximize viral clearance and minimize transmission of SARS-CoV-2.” But how are we going to prevent people from stopping the drug, or forgetting a dose, or merely talking and dining with family members without masks, throughout treatment? This is simply not realistic in the general population.
In addition, the fact sheet recognizes that “changes in the spike protein occurred at positions targeted by monoclonal antibodies and vaccines.” Bafflingly, however, it adds, “The clinical and public health significance of these changes are unknown.” The significance of changes to spike protein positions by antibodies and vaccines is very well known: These changes are what allowed each variant of concern — from alpha to beta to delta to omicron — to evade immunity from previous infection, vaccines or monoclonal antibody treatment.

What can be done? We can take some comfort in the FDA’s requiring Merck to report, within three months, the viral mutations induced by molnupiravir in clinical trial participants. Merck will also need to report viral mutations in immunocompromised patients, who are likely to harbor viruses longer. As this crucial information should have been supplied before approval, a responsible approach would be to limit molnupiravir use for the next three months to the best controlled settings. For example, health care providers could prescribe it only to people who live alone, or who live in managed care or nursing facilities where effective isolation can be implemented. And then it will be important for the FDA to be ready to revoke the emergency-use authorization if viable immunoevasive variants do indeed arise, even if only once.

The FDA and Merck have essentially engaged the public in a gamble without public debate. They are betting that every single mutated virus copy that will be transmitted from patients taking molnupiravir will be neutral, or hurt the virus itself and not its host — that there won’t be even one case of a lucky hit that creates a more capable or evasive virus. This seems like a bad bet, as SARS-CoV-2 has a track record in this pandemic of winning its own bets. But now that the dice have been rolled, we must take every measure we can to use the drug responsibly and quantify its risks. Our ability to end the pandemic may well depend on it.
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Someone_else

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The FDA approved the Merck antiviral drug molnupiravir
Really?! Is this true, or is it a lie? If true, then every "vax" is now no longer authorized.
Food and Drug Administration made what may be the most momentous drug-approval decision in its history: It granted emergency-use authorization for Merck’s molnupiravir to treat covid-19. This approval is...
Bullshit!!! Emergency use authorization is NOT NOT NOT "approval"! The author is a liar or hopelessly stupid about FDA terminology. I stopped reading this bullshit right here.

Okay, the author probably goes on to state problems with this killer drug. I will grudgingly give some credit for that.
 

hammerhead

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Health care workers can now isolate for a shorter period of time following a COVID-19 exposure, the CDC announced Thursday evening. If workers test positive for the virus but are asymptomatic, they can return to the frontlines after seven days with a negative COVID test.
hat isolation time could be reduced even more based on staffing shortages, the CDC said.



In updated quarantine guidance, the CDC said workers do not need to stay home following “high-risk exposures” if they are fully vaccinated and boosted against COVID.



“Our goal is to keep healthcare personnel and patients safe, and to address and prevent undue burden on our healthcare facilities,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement.Our priority, remains prevention— and I strongly encourage all healthcare personnel to get vaccinated and boosted.”
 

ZZZZZ

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Really?! Is this true, or is it a lie? If true, then every "vax" is now no longer authorized.

Bullshit!!! Emergency use authorization is NOT NOT NOT "approval"! The author is a liar or hopelessly stupid about FDA terminology. I stopped reading this bullshit right here.

Okay, the author probably goes on to state problems with this killer drug. I will grudgingly give some credit for that.

Well, as I mentioned, it's from the Washington Pest, so they definitely are speaking with an agenda.
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chieftain

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The article itself is a nothing piece, however one of the comments is indicative of the sheer insanity taking root in the electorate:


Pebbles 2 hours ago

Prof. Nicola Spurrier in SA made a good point this afternoon. She noted that of the cases in this omicron outbreak so far for whom vaccination status is know, 85% are vaccinated. She commented that this basically reflects the vaccination status in the community. In other words, two doses of vaccine is doing nothing to prevent infection, and the third dose is essential.

How does the absurd cognitive dissonance raging in their head not cause a severe hemorrhage or explosion. Is the real disease not respiratory but neurological where it removes any and all discomfort/pain when such conflicting and impossible ideas take root???
 

newmisty

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Hear hear! Long, long overdue.
Will give-much better control of curriculum, avoids communist teachers poison and get to prescreen friends, not worry about social distractions in AMD around class & greatly limit bad influences.
 

newmisty

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The article itself is a nothing piece, however one of the comments is indicative of the sheer insanity taking root in the electorate:




How does the absurd cognitive dissonance raging in their head not cause a severe hemorrhage or explosion. Is the real disease not respiratory but neurological where it removes any and all discomfort/pain when such conflicting and impossible ideas take root???
'something tells me "Pebbles" was one of those who gravitated toward 'dancing' in lieu of continuing education. :blond:
 

chieftain

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Strippers are far smarter than many people give them credit for.
 

Buck

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Strippers are far smarter than many people give them credit for.
i could never get a stripper to date me...perhaps that's all the proof i need


snicker
 

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Uglytruth

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I would like to personally delete they all. Just to make sure the "Deletion" worked. You know how deleted people lie.
Face it........ that is the ONLY long term solution.
 

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There is a lot of ado regarding Kennedy's book on Fauchi that relates to this. I think the book has been banned at certain book sellers. I didn't post this but I came across this at another website that offers no cost downloads.

I just got it from audible but haven’t started. I’m looking forward to it after listening to the 1.5 hour in depth interview someone posted.

I remember way back when Kennedy went on the OReilly factor - I used to think he was a nut. Maybe I was too young to listen and think about some of what he said. I’m not going to wake up a liberal tomorrow but there is Venn diagram overlap in the “don’t trust powerful people or governments” realm.
 

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There is a lot of ado regarding Kennedy's book on Fauchi that relates to this. I think the book has been banned at certain book sellers. I didn't post this but I came across this at another website that offers no cost downloads.

I got it for Christmas from Mrs Old, only part way through. Most of the people who need to read it probably won't.
 

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Doctors who 'assume' kill hundreds of thousands of patients every year caused by misdiagnoses. It's what they do! These people are witch doctors who have a hair across their asses. Not a good recipe for public safety
 
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BigJim#1-8

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Who is He ?
What is he?
Where is He ?
Who was he giving this address too ?
Right? I watched the entire thing and found it fascinating...but I was left wondering the same. BTW a book mentioned in the video(Emerging Viruses by Leonard G Horowitz) is available on amazon right now! ...for $121.83.

Patreon + Red Pill(publisher) + a stupid video title all makes it a chore to locate data on. Also, amusingly, if you try to link to the video on faceplant it's blocked as "spam". Shocking.

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Who is He ?
What is he?
Where is He ?
Who was he giving this address too ?


Dr Michael Mcdowell

That is all I can find...

probably for a reason
 

the_shootist

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Dr Michael Mcdowell

That is all I can find...

probably for a reason

 

solarion

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