TWiV 668: Mice, bats, and coronaviruses with Tony Schountz

Tony Schountz joins TWiV to explain the work of his laboratory showing that deer mice can be infected with and transmit SARS-CoV-2, and how his colony of Jamaican fruit bats is being used to understand their response to virus infections.

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Show notes at microbe.tv/twiv

{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Martin Ritt 4 October 2020, 4:34 pm

    Dear friends at TWiV
    I hope you are ok that I approach you as “friends”. As another listener wrote recently: it feels like listening to a group of friends when following your discussions. Everytime I hear you say “we don’t know” I feel confirmed having good and honest friends that I can trust.

    I am writing you as “just” a controls engineer from Munich who learned about TWiV when you interviewed Christian Drosten for the first time earlier this year and who is listening carefully ever since.

    You discussed on TWiV 668 listener Charles’ letter on the number of to be expected deaths when going for heard immunity referring to your discussion of higher numbers on TWiV 665. Isn’t the number Charles is presenting (and you have now agreed to) the lower bound for the number of potential deaths when going for heard immunity without a vaccine? Have I not understood correctly that the IFR of 0.68% would still be under the assumption that the infected would get all necessary and known treatments? However, if we would leave the pandemic to follow its inherent dynamics, we would see health systems breaking down etc. and consequently a much higher fatality rate. Because 0.68% is close to the normal death rate of about 0.7% (according to the CDC) certain people interpret Covid as not so dangerous. Shouldn’t we always highlight the (potential) dynamics of the pandemic to not underestimate the risks? Dynamics? That’s my area as a controls engineer and why I might have reacted to the quite static view on a dynamically evolving pandemic.

    Continue your great work
    Martin

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