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RE: wind power

Is the 3000 year estimate base upon only domestic use or does it include exportation?
BCSnob 02/26/21 04:11pm Around the Campfire
RE: wind power

Perhaps it stopped when there were no more warm shallow oceans that supported large amounts of zooplankton and phytoplankton. U of Calgary: Oil formation
BCSnob 02/26/21 02:51pm Around the Campfire
RE: Chevrolet exits all ICE production by 2035

We got 3 Christmas cards 1.5 months after the postmark date; I doubt EV postal vehicles will make delivery’s slower. Pony Express would have been faster.
BCSnob 02/26/21 01:48pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Moderna vaccine (Personal experiences)

I got my 1st dose scheduled for March 1st; I’m waiting for the confirmation email from Walgreens and my employer letter indicating I am eligible for vaccination (Phase 1C, essential manufacturing/lab workers).
BCSnob 02/26/21 06:46am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

I watched an interview on TV of a nurse on the reasons she was not getting vaccinated; one was she didn’t want to get covid from the vaccine. This prompted a swearing fit at the TV by me; it just came out like a sneeze (couldn’t control it).
BCSnob 02/25/21 01:10pm Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

That was a clinical trial looking for adverse effects (safety) not efficacy; efficacy is tested in the next phase of the clinical trials. The trial is for the treatment of MERS not Covid-19. Monoclonal antibodies against MERS coronavirus show promise in Phase 1 NIH-sponsored trial Link
BCSnob 02/25/21 12:27pm Around the Campfire
RE: Texas winterizing...

Who is at fault here; the ones who offered these plans or those who purchased them? Texas Lt Governor says it’s the consumers fault for their high power bills. Link
BCSnob 02/25/21 10:16am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Now a new variant in NY. A Novel SARS-CoV-2 Variant of Concern, B.1.526, Identified in New York MedRxiv preprint doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.02.23.21252259 Recent months have seen surges of SARS-CoV-2 infection across the globe along with considerable viral evolution. Extensive mutations in the spike protein of variants B.1.1.7, B1.351, and P.1 have raised concerns that the efficacy of current vaccines and therapeutic monoclonal antibodies could be threatened. In vitro studies have shown that one mutation, E484K, plays a crucial role in the loss of neutralizing activity of some monoclonal antibodies as well as most convalescent and vaccinee sera against variant B.1.351. In fact, two vaccine trials have recently reported lower protective efficacy in South Africa, where B.1.351 is dominant. To survey for these novel variants in our patient population in New York City, PCR assays were designed to identify viruses with two signature mutations, E484K and N501Y. We observed a steady increase in the detection rate from late December to mid-February, with an alarming rise to 12.3% in the past two weeks. Whole genome sequencing further demonstrated that most of our E484K isolates (n=49/65) fell within a single lineage: NextStrain clade 20C or Pangolin lineage B.1.526. Patients with this novel variant came from diverse neighborhoods in the metropolitan area, and they were on average older and more frequently hospitalized. Phylogenetic analyses of sequences in the database further reveal that this B.1.526 variant is scattered in the Northeast of US, and its unique set of spike mutations may also pose an antigenic challenge for current interventions.
BCSnob 02/25/21 07:15am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

I highly recommend you read this. No media hype, just plain speaking from these highly respected scientists SARS-CoV-2 Viral Variants—Tackling a Moving Target John R. Mascola, MD1; Barney S. Graham, MD, PhD1; Anthony S. Fauci, MD2 1Vaccine Research Center, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 2Office of the Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland JAMA. Published online February 11, 2021. In this issue of JAMA, Zhang and colleagues1 report the emergence of a novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variant in Southern California that accounted for 44% (37 of 85) of samples collected and studied in January 2021. The terminology of viral variation can be confusing because the media and even scientific communications often use the terms variant, strain, and lineage interchangeably. The terminology reflects the basic replication biology of RNA viruses that results in the introduction of mutations throughout the viral genome. When specific mutations, or sets of mutations, are selected through numerous rounds of viral replication, a new variant can emerge. If the sequence variation produces a virus with distinctly different phenotypic characteristics, the variant is co-termed a strain. When through genetic sequencing and phylogenetic analysis a new variant is detected as a distinct branch on a phylogenetic tree, a new lineage is born. New variants become predominant through a process of evolutionary selection that is not well understood. Once identified, several questions arise regarding the potential clinical consequences of a new variant: Is it more readily transmitted; is it more virulent or pathogenic; and can it evade immunity induced by vaccination or prior infection? For these reasons, new viral variants are studied, leading to the terms variant under investigation or variant of concern. To communicate effectively about new SARS-CoV-2 variants, a common nomenclature is needed, which like the virus, is evolving. Fortunately, the World Health Organization (WHO) is working on a systematic nomenclature that does not require a geographic reference, since viral variants can spread rapidly and globally. Currently, the terminology is overlapping, as reflected in the report by Zhang et al.1 This new variant (CAL.20C) is termed lineage 20C/S:452R in Nextstrain nomenclature,2 referring to the parent clade 20C and spike alteration 452R. Similarly, using a distinct PANGO nomenclature,3 this variant derives from lineage B (B.1.429 and B.1.427). While alterations in any viral genes can have implications for pathogenesis, those arising in the spike protein that mediates viral entry into host cells and is a key target of vaccines and monoclonal antibodies are of particular interest. The new variant, identified in California and termed 20C/S:452R, has 3 amino acid changes in the spike protein, represented using the single-letter amino acid nomenclature: S13I, W152C, and L452R. To interpret this new set of alterations, it is useful to review what is known about recent variants that have become predominant in other regions of the world. During the early phase of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, there were only modest levels of genetic evolution; however, more recent information indicates that even a single amino acid substitution can have biological implications. Starting in April 2020, the original SARS-CoV-2 strain was replaced in many regions of the world by a variant called D614G, which was subsequently shown to increase the efficiency of viral replication in humans and was more transmissible in animal models.4-6 The D614G strain appears to position its receptor binding domain to interact more efficiently with the ACE2 receptor, and it is associated with higher nasopharyngeal viral RNA loads, which may explain its rise to dominance. In October 2020, sequencing analysis in the UK detected an emerging variant, later termed B.1.1.7 or 20I/501Y.V1, which is now present and rapidly spreading in many countries.7 B.1.1.7 contains 8 mutations in the spike protein and maintains the D614G mutation. One of these, N501Y, appears to further increase the spike protein interaction with the ACE2 receptor. Epidemiological studies indicate that the B.1.1.7/20I/501Y.V1 strain is 30% to 80% more effectively transmitted and results in higher nasopharyngeal viral loads than the wild-type strain of SARS-CoV. Also of concern are retrospective observational studies suggesting an approximately 30% increased risk of death associated with this variant.8 Another notable variant, 20H/501Y.V2 or B.1.351, was first identified is South Africa, where it has rapidly become the predominant strain.9 Cases attributed to this strain have been detected in multiple countries outside of South Africa, including recent cases in the US. B.1.351 shares the D614G and N501Y mutations with B.1.1.1.7; thus, it is thought to also have a high potential for transmission. There are no data yet to suggest an increased risk of death due to this variant. Importantly, this constellation of mutations—9 total in the spike protein—add yet another dimension of concern. B.1.351 strains are less effectively neutralized by convalescent plasma from patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and by sera from those vaccinated with several vaccines in development.10-12 The decrement in neutralization can be more than 10-fold with convalescent plasma and averages 5- to 6-fold less with sera from vaccinated individuals. Fortunately, neutralization titers induced by vaccination are high, and even with a 6-fold decrease, serum can still effectively neutralize the virus. Nonetheless, these data are concerning because they indicate that viral variation can result in antigenic changes that alter antibody-mediated immunity. This is highlighted by in vitro studies showing the B.1.351 strain to be partially or fully resistant to neutralization by certain monoclonal antibodies, including some authorized for therapeutic use in the US.12 The prevalent strains in the US appear to remain sensitive to therapeutic monoclonal antibodies; however, recent evolutionary history raises the concern that the virus could be only a few mutations away from more substantive resistance. COVID-19 vaccine development has been an extraordinary success; however, it is unclear how effective these vaccines will be against the new variants. The interim data from 2 randomized placebo-controlled vaccine studies, the rAd26 from Janssen and a recombinant protein from Novavax, offer some insight. The Janssen study included sites in the US, Brazil, and South Africa with efficacy against COVID-19 at 72%, 66%, and 57%, respectively.13 Novavax reported efficacy from studies in the UK and South Africa with overall efficacy of 89% and 60%, respectively.14 Viral sequence data from infected patients showed that the B.1.351 strain was responsible for the majority of infections in South Africa. Lower vaccine efficacy in the South Africa cohort could be related to antigenic variation or to geographic or population differences. Despite the reduced efficacy, the rAd26 vaccine was 85% effective overall in preventing severe COVID-19, and protection was similar in all regions. These data suggest that current vaccines could retain the ability to prevent hospitalizations and deaths, even in the face of decreased overall efficacy due to antigenic variation. It is unclear whether changes in vaccine composition will be needed to effectively control the COVID-19 pandemic; however, it is prudent to be prepared. Some companies have indicated plans to manufacture and test vaccines based on emerging variants, and such studies will provide important information on the potential to broaden the immune response. The recognition of a novel emergent variant, 20C/S:452R, in the most populous US state necessitates further investigation for implications of enhanced transmission. In particular, the L452R mutation in the spike protein could affect the binding of certain therapeutic monoclonal antibodies. The emergence of this and other new variants is likely to be a common occurrence until the spread of this virus is reduced. This emphasizes the importance of a global approach to surveillance, tracking, and vaccine deployment. The approach should be systematic and include in vitro assessment of sensitivity to neutralization by monoclonal antibodies and vaccine sera, vaccine protection of animals against challenge with new strains, and field data defining viral sequences from breakthrough infections in vaccines. The infrastructure and process used for tracking and updating influenza vaccines could be used to inform that process. Finally, SARS-CoV-2 will be with the global population for some time and has clearly shown its tendency toward rapid antigenic variation, providing a “wake-up call” that a sustained effort to develop a pan-SARS-CoV-2 vaccine is warranted.
BCSnob 02/24/21 02:19pm Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Contained within this quote from a recent preprint is a discussion of the impacts on neutralization of various virus mutations and the certain numbers of mutations within the RBD or certain locations of a mutation can lower the effectiveness of antibodies produced by vaccines or past infections. Note that the California variant was included in this study. Also in this quote is a discussion on why 2 doses of vaccine can provide better protection as the virus mutates. Circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants escape neutralization by vaccine-induced humoral immunity medRxiv preprint doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.02.14.21251704 Traditionally, polyclonal immune responses that arise in the context of infection and vaccination are thought to target multiple antigenic epitopes. Given this assumption, the expectation would be for small numbers of variations in antigen sequence to have only modest effects on recognition by the immune system. Here, we find that while many strains, such as B.1.1.7, B.1.1.298, or B.1.429, continue to be potently neutralized despite the presence of individual RBD mutations, other circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants escape vaccine-induced humoral immunity. The P.2. variant, which contains an E484K mutation within the RBD region, was capable of significantly reducing neutralization potency of fully vaccinated individuals, in line with what has been suggested by deep mutational scanning (Greaney et al. 2020; Jangra et al. 2021). Similarly, the P.1 strain, which has three RBD mutations, more effectively escaped neutralization, possibly explaining recently reported cases of re-infection with this variant (Paiva et al. 2020; Faria et al. 2021; Resende et al. 2021; Naveca et al. 2021; Nonaka et al. 2021). Finally, we found that B.1.351 variants exhibited remarkable resistance to neutralization, largely due to three mutations in RBD but with measurable contribution from non-RBD mutations. The magnitude of the effect is such that B.1.351 strains escape neutralizing vaccine responses as effectively as distantly related coronaviruses. Given the loss of vaccine potency against a number of circulating variants, individuals receiving a single dose of vaccine did not raise sufficient antibody titers to provide any detectable cross neutralization against B.1.351 v2 or v3. While our studies are limited by the relatively short follow-up time after vaccination, our findings support the importance of 2-dose regimens to achieve titers, and perhaps breadth, to enhance protection against novel variants. These findings are important to consider in the context of proposals to administer a single dose of vaccine across a larger number of individuals instead of using doses to boost prior recipients
BCSnob 02/24/21 02:08pm Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

All mutations affect disease characteristics Not correct, mutations outside of the RBD have little to no impact on the disease characteristics. The California variant has a mutation within the RBD. The larger cluster (36%, 67 of 185) consisted of a novel variant descended from cluster 20C, defined by 5 mutations (ORF1a: I4205V, ORF1b: D1183Y, S: S13I; W152C; L452R) and designated CAL.20C (20C/S:452R; /B.1.429). ..... this strain is defined by 3 mutations in the S-protein characterizing it as a subclade of 20C. The S protein L452R mutation is within a known receptor binding domain that has been found to be resistant to certain spike (S) protein monoclonal antibodies. Source: JAMA One last comment, the news media in the announcement of the California variant was the Journal of the American Medical Association. I don’t think they’re in the business of “selling their product”.
BCSnob 02/24/21 01:44pm Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

J&J one shot vaccine is being reviewed by the FDA for EUA. FDA Briefing Document Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) Ad26.COV2.S Vaccine for the Prevention of COVID-19 The data indicates it is not as effective as Moderna’s or Pfizer’s vaccines; however, the mix of variants present during the phase 3 clinical trials of those vaccines was different than the current mix of variants.
BCSnob 02/24/21 07:39am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Get ready to hear more reports about the Southern California variant (B.1.429) which may be responsible for the surge in cases in CA at the end of 2020. Emergence of a Novel SARS-CoV-2 Variant in Southern California
BCSnob 02/23/21 10:50am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Here is another study assessing if patients with previous infections or ones that have been vaccinated have antibodies that can neutralize the South African variant. (one of my employer's products was used to measure how effective the antibodies are at binding to the RBD of several variants) Reduced binding and neutralization of infection- and vaccine-induced antibodies to the B.1.351 (South African) SARS-CoV-2 variant bioRxiv preprint doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.02.20.432046 The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants with mutations in the spike protein is raising concerns about the efficacy of infection- or vaccine-induced antibodies to neutralize these variants. We compared antibody binding and live virus neutralization of sera from naturally infected and spike mRNA vaccinated individuals against a circulating SARS-CoV-2 B.1 variant and the emerging B.1.351 variant. In acutely-infected (5-19 days post-symptom onset), convalescent COVID-19 individuals (through 8 months post-symptom onset) and mRNA-1273 vaccinated individuals (day 14 post-second dose), we observed an average 4.3-fold reduction in antibody titers to the B.1.351-derived receptor binding domain of the spike protein and an average 3.5-fold reduction in neutralizing antibody titers to the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.351 variant as compared to the B.1 variant (spike D614G). However, most acute and convalescent sera from infected and all vaccinated individuals neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.351 variant, suggesting that protective immunity is retained against COVID-19.
BCSnob 02/23/21 06:52am Around the Campfire
RE: Moderna vaccine (Personal experiences)

Vaccination priorities are not just by age, certain chronic diseases can move one up in priority as can jobs; these people can then shift older people farther back in the line. Different jurisdictions can alter the priorities based upon jobs and different jurisdictions get different quantities of vaccines (changing how much of their line has been vaccinated). All of this means where you live (and how many people who are eligible to be in front of you want the vaccine) can make a big difference where you fall in the line. In MD, you can get vaccinated where you live or where you work. Since I work in one county and live in a different one I can preregister in both counties (the state allows this). My place in the line is different in these two counties for the reasons listed above. I will get vaccinated in the county where I get to the front of the line earliest. It appears I am closer to the front of the line in the county where I work.
BCSnob 02/22/21 02:48pm Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

If a subject tests asymptomatic positive with zero communicability and acceptable inherent immune response, is this a true positive checkmark? Asymptomatic cases are communicable; this is the major difference between Covid-19 and other respiratory viral diseases (like Flu, MERS, etc). In the Phase 3 trials symptoms trigger testing. I think the AstraZeneca trial is the only one where testing occurred regardless of symptoms but under the clinical trail design, asymptomatic RT-PCR positive cases will not count as a Covid case for the determination of effectiveness.
BCSnob 02/22/21 11:54am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Here are two news articles that add to the confusion. ’We could be approaching herd immunity’: Epidemiologist on coronavirus pandemic As the seven-day average of newly confirmed COVID-19 cases in the U.S. dramatically declines, down about 66% from a month ago, Suzanne Judd, an epidemiologist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health, says it’s “possible” we’re approaching herd immunity. Judd points to a Columbia University study that estimates the number of active COVID-19 cases in the U.S. could be 10 times the number confirmed through testing. The study, published by NPR ahead of peer review, suggests that as of the end of January, more than a third of the U.S. population had already been infected with coronavirus. “You add the findings from the Columbia study to the number of vaccinations that have been rolling out, and it’s possible that we could be approaching herd immunity,” Judd told Yahoo Finance Live. “We should know within the next two or three months if this trend holds, but this is definitely the most positive news we have seen in a long time.” And here is more information on the Columbia Study Active COVID Cases May Be Ten Times Official Count: Study The number of active COVID-19 cases in the United States is roughly ten times higher than the number of confirmed cases on any given day, according to a computer model by Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health scientists. Since the start of the pandemic, an estimated one-third of the U.S. population has already been infected, with numbers five times that of the official count. Jeffrey Shaman, PhD, a professor of environmental health sciences known for his COVID-19 projections, led the research, based on case numbers and anonymized cellphone location data to estimate population mixing. The findings appear ahead of peer review in a report by NPR. The Columbia study uses proximity data from cell phones to estimate how many more people were infected (making assumptions about infections based upon proximity) than the current estimate. The epidemiologist makes the assumption that vaccines are providing immunity.
BCSnob 02/22/21 08:56am Around the Campfire
RE: 2019–20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC POSTINGS

Since there continues to be confusion on what is meant by "vaccine effectiveness" (immunity or something else) I thought it would be good to review what has been published. Efficacy The first primary end point was the efficacy of BNT162b2 against confirmed Covid-19 with onset at least 7 days after the second dose in participants who had been without serologic or virologic evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection up to 7 days after the second dose; the second primary end point was efficacy in participants with and participants without evidence of prior infection. Confirmed Covid-19 was defined according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) criteria as the presence of at least one of the following symptoms: fever, new or increased cough, new or increased shortness of breath, chills, new or increased muscle pain, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, diarrhea, or vomiting, combined with a respiratory specimen obtained during the symptomatic period or within 4 days before or after it that was positive for SARS-CoV-2 by nucleic acid amplification–based testing, either at the central laboratory or at a local testing facility (using a protocol-defined acceptable test). Major secondary end points included the efficacy of BNT162b2 against severe Covid-19. Severe Covid-19 is defined by the FDA as confirmed Covid-19 with one of the following additional features: clinical signs at rest that are indicative of severe systemic illness; respiratory failure; evidence of shock; significant acute renal, hepatic, or neurologic dysfunction; admission to an intensive care unit; or death. Details are provided in the protocol. link For the Pfizer vaccine, effectiveness is defined as preventing the disease Covid-19 which is defined as having at least one of the symptoms above plus confirmation by a positive RT-PCR test. Efficacy Assessments The primary end point was the efficacy of the mRNA-1273 vaccine in preventing a first occurrence of symptomatic Covid-19 with onset at least 14?days after the second injection in the per-protocol population, among participants who were seronegative at baseline. End points were judged by an independent adjudication committee that was unaware of group assignment. Covid-19 cases were defined as occurring in participants who had at least two of the following symptoms: fever (temperature ?38°C), chills, myalgia, headache, sore throat, or new olfactory or taste disorder, or as occurring in those who had at least one respiratory sign or symptom (including cough, shortness of breath, or clinical or radiographic evidence of pneumonia) and at least one nasopharyngeal swab, nasal swab, or saliva sample (or respiratory sample, if the participant was hospitalized) that was positive for SARS-CoV-2 by reverse-transcriptase–polymerase-chain-reaction (RT-PCR) test. link For the Moderna vaccine, effectiveness is defined as preventing the symptomatic Covid-19 which is defined as having at least two of the symptoms above plus confirmation by a positive RT-PCR test. The effectiveness of these two vaccines does not include prevention of asymptomatic infections by SARS-CoV-2; or stated another way, these vaccines were not evaluated on providing immunity. That does not mean they do not provide immunity; it just means that is not how their effectiveness was evaluated. There is little to no data on the effectiveness at providing immunity. To determine if these vaccines provide immunity (or at what rate) would require a human challenge study (vaccinate and then purposely infect with the virus and measure how many develop positive RT-PCR tests) or vaccinate (with placebo or vaccine) and follow everyone with periodic RT-PCR tests (~ every 2 weeks).
BCSnob 02/22/21 07:43am Around the Campfire
RE: Texas winterizing...

I view the power plans based upon the wholesale market prices of electricity (like those from Griddy) the same as home mortgages with variable interest rates. Who is at fault here; the ones who offered these plans or those who purchased them?
BCSnob 02/21/21 11:39am Around the Campfire
RE: Texas winterizing...

This photo from Texas comes to my mind. :) https://s.w-x.co/util/image/w/ap_21047602647561.jpg?crop=16:9&width=980&format=pjpg&auto=webp&quality=60
BCSnob 02/20/21 09:27am Around the Campfire
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