Popularization of research advances on COVID-19

2020 - Page 3 of 4 - News

Which vaccines are in phase III clinical testing ?

In December 2019 the appearance of a new coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2) provoked the worldwide pandemic that we are currently experiencing. For reasons that we are not sure of, immunity linked to these types of seasonal virus only lasts a relatively short time, from 80 days to several years, making […]


Twitter and the fight against COVID-19

COVID-19 was declared to be a pandemic by the WHO (World Health Organisation) on the 11th March 2020. Heads of governments reacted to this situation by informing their populations of measures that were to be put in place to inhibit the virus’ spread.  Numerous possible communication channels exist to disseminate public information. Social media is […]


How old are viruses?

Can we give a date to the first appearance of viruses? The recent COVID-19 pandemic is a instructive example of the kinds of pressure and danger that viruses bring to our health and our economy. This episode has sparked great public interest in virology. Viruses are non-living biological entities, since they don’t actually reproduce, which […]


Antibodies produced through genetic engineering are even more effective

The use of antibodies to combat human illness dates from the 1980s. They are the key component of the immune response. At that time, blood taken from rabbits infected with the diptheria bacteria were used to treat patients, even though the discovery of how antibodies work came later. How exactly do they work? They can recognize […]


Evaluation of the immune memory when faced with SARS-CoV-2

To understand the importance of the immune-memory, it’s necessary to first of all understand the stages of response of the organism to an infection. Several agents are involved in the immune response specific to the fight against the SARS-CoV-2: the antibodies, the B lymphocytes (LB), the T lymphocytes T (LT) CD8+ (or cytotoxic cells, which […]


Less antibodies but more deaths?

The majority of people infected by SARS-CoV-2 show only moderate symptoms. However, a small fraction go on to develop severe forms, and some die as a result. The very rapid spread of COVID-19 and the impossibility of predicting the illness’ evolution are the main reasons for the overburdening of hospital services. Understanding the evolution of […]


3 vaccines: which will be the most effective?

On the 9th November 2020 the American company Pfizer, in collaboration with the German company BioNTech, announced the creation of an anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, with 90% effectiveness. On the 11 November the national centre for epidemiology and microbiology in Moscow claimed that its vaccine Sputnik V had 92% effectiveness. The most recent vaccine to be announced […]


Why is the mortality rate falling in England?

COVID-19 has infected more than 50 million people and been responsible for the deaths of 1.2 million people around the world. No miracle cure has been found, nor any spectacular advances in treatment made. However latest figures in England show a reduction in mortality rates. The reasons for this reduction remain in part unknown. The […]


A mutant virus could be more efficient in replication and transmission

The spread of a viral pandemic may be a favourable environment for mutations potentially able to modify the development of the illness, its virulence, and the virus’ capacities for transmission. SARS-CoV-2 possesses a correction activity as its genome is replicated. As a result there are relatively few mutations that accumulate over time in comparison with […]


Observe levels of biomarkers so as to anticipate the illness evolution

Mortality rates and the severity of COVID-19 are associated with high levels of cytokines and certain inflammatory biomarkers, molecules that are essential in diagnosis. The cytokines, like Interleuken IL-6, are small immunological proteins produced after infection that remotely regulate the activity of immune cells. As for the biomarker, it is a measurable biological substance linked […]

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