edcara
Ed Cara
edcara
Science writer at Gizmodo and pug aficionado elsewhere
Jan 13
5

There might be some funky counterexamples where this isn’t true—viruses do be weird—but as a general rule, yea. Some viruses like measles are very evolutionarily stable tho, and haven’t changed much over time

Jan 13
13

Just as an update, did tweak the wording on this graf to note that this was the researchers’ conclusion of what happened and that the fungus identified was indeed the same kind of mushroom he had injected.

Jan 12
57

Yes, that’s certainly possible. However, and this is spelled out in the report itself, the species of shroom found in his blood was the same as the shroom he injected. Seems very likely that improper sterilization and the injection both explain the bacteria and fungi found in him. 

Jan 8
1

Yeah, in a realistic but bad scenario, the vaccine would lose effectiveness against these variants. But no scientists I’ve heard or talked to think that these variants will completely dodge our vaxes; they’d still provide some level of protection, and probably a lot!

Dec 30
2

The above is true, but another key limiting factor is that Ebola usually requires close contact with bodily fluids like blood to infect a new person. A version that could spread via respiratory droplets/aerosols ala covid-19 but remain as lethal would undoubtedly spread much faster and be harder to stop.

Dec 30
1

It’s a complex question unfortunately! But you’re not far off. Maybe your odds of catching it in that room wouldn’t go up 70% exactly. But if we stuck a bunch of people in the room, with some infected, we’d see more people eventually contract the disease afterwards than we would if those people were carrying the older Read more

Dec 13
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I can see the arguments for calling HIV a pandemic! But it’s usually referred to as a global epidemic by various public health agencies, including the CDC and WHO, so going with them. 

Dec 10
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Can’t see why not! But I wonder if it wouldn’t just be easier/safer to cut out the middle-man and use phages that would kill the bacteria themselves

Dec 9
4

Yea, that is one theory! With toxo, though, the effects are probably very subtle and might only be noticeable on a population level. It remains to be seen whether this cat bacteria link is just a rare but serious complication or just a weird, unrelated coincidence 

Dec 7
22

Many people who become homeless tend to not stay homeless forever, though they might bounce in and out of it. So it’s just more accurate to characterize it as an experience, not something intrinsic as an adjective would imply. Read more

Dec 4
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My best wishes to you and the ex. Yeah, right now, it just hasn’t been looked at. It’s almost certain that some people in the trials did have it already but didn’t test positive or caught it after a test was taken, but haven’t seen any real data available on their outcomes and if they differed from everyone else. Read more

Dec 4
12

All good questions, some of which are unanswerable until we get more details on the approval and rollout, as well as keep studying those who take it (a paper from Moderna today though did find immunity lasting three months at least). Read more

Nov 25
1

I don’t disagree with the above! There might have been a few quirks where some other form of injury could have been lumped in with these cases, but obviously a small minority. As for how long, it usually took prolonged use in a lot of cases I’ve seen info on.

Nov 25
24

There are a few cases where THC/Vit E wasn’t found in victims’ lungs and no clear evidence that they used THC. But I haven’t seen any concrete theory for how these cases could have had these specific symptoms from e-cigarettes alone, even if e-cigarettes can cause harm in some other way. Read more

Nov 19
2

You’re still running against the problem that we haven’t seen many, if any, other signals that dog-to-dog transmission is happening, let alone dog-to-human. And we have seen cats spread it to other cats, and minks spread it to people, so it’s not just a matter of people not looking for these kinds of risks. Read more

Nov 19
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Well, I don’t think it’s impossible! But there’s a lot of priors of weighing against it. Read more

Nov 17
6

Well, I think Ebola is partly to blame for that, since the discovery of it in semen long after initial infection was only recent. Given that we’re talking about a disease only ever seen once before, makes sense to collect as much data as possible. I imagine the survivor was just given a good battery of tests at Read more

Nov 13
1

My condolences! Hope your furry friend can pull through