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Are we facing a new pandemic next winter from covid mutations?

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We are still in the same, so from that perspective nothing has changed. There were already a number of mutated strains out there, with most of the mutations being silent or most likely neutral. The article indicates a new functional mutation in the spike protein, which had fewer non-silent mutations than other sites (IIRC) as it is such a crucial element to establish infections. I.e. the risk really is that there may be a change in the transmission, though it is still a bit early to tell. At this stage changes in frequency can also simply down to chance (e.g. how fast an outbreak was recognized and stopped). 

But not to worry, we will get a new pandemic with something new soon enough, especially if we continue to fail to improve our response.

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Do you think that, in the end, we'll have to let the virus run its course. 

Despite all our attempts to fend it off with our hand-sanitizers, masks, and social distancing.

The virus will kill off the weak people. The strong people will survive.

Isn't that how it works, in a Darwinian world?

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Just now, Charles 3781 said:

The virus will kill off the weak people. The strong people will survive.

Define weak in this regard. Especially among younger folks death has been associated with a too strong immune response.

Just now, Charles 3781 said:

Isn't that how it works, in a Darwinian world?

You might be thinking of social Darwinism, which is not a biological concept. It is not about strength, it is about reproductive success. Leopards are at risk of extinction. Rabbits not so much.

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Personally, I haven't reproduced a single off-spring, as I preferred other pursuits

4 minutes ago, CharonY said:

Define weak in this regard. Especially among younger folks death has been associated with a too strong immune response.

You might be thinking of social Darwinism, which is not a biological concept. It is not about strength, it is about reproductive success. Leopards are at risk of extinction. Rabbits not so much.

Well that's me done then. I haven't produced any off-spring. No reproductive success whatsoever.

How have you done?  

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1 hour ago, Charles 3781 said:

Personally, I haven't reproduced a single off-spring, as I preferred other pursuits

Well that's me done then. I haven't produced any off-spring. No reproductive success whatsoever.

How have you done?  

Same(probably), though note a relative's genetic success can be as good as if not better than your own to an extent.

We're all pretty similar too on the whole, so not really bothered by it personally, especially with this sheer mass of humanity that we have today. Genghis Khan would even have a run for his money, with a population of over 7 billion.

 

 

 

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Why often repeated, it is worthwhile to add that evolution is not about anything. It is just the consequence of the way genetics and reproduction works. 

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15 hours ago, Dord said:

It's a good job H.G. Wells' Martians didn't take your advice on avoidance or we'd all be vaporised or be sucked dry of blood.  Thank heavens for dirty germs. :)

 

You do realize that was fiction, right? And that wasn't simply reduced exposure, but no exposure at all? It has not been established what the optimum level of exposure is, so claiming less will be worse is a guess.

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15 hours ago, Charles 3781 said:

Do you think that, in the end, we'll have to let the virus run its course. 

Despite all our attempts to fend it off with our hand-sanitizers, masks, and social distancing.

The virus will kill off the weak people. The strong people will survive.

Isn't that how it works, in a Darwinian world?

No, not really...

The weak you speak of, is just less suited to the world we live in; less food, less heat, less appropriate age, etc...

So the strong you speak of, is just lucky to have enough...

So evolution really only describes, the fortunate... 😉

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8 hours ago, swansont said:

You do realize that was fiction, right?

Yes

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On 7/22/2020 at 7:18 PM, CharonY said:

We are still in the same, so from that perspective nothing has changed. There were already a number of mutated strains out there, with most of the mutations being silent or most likely neutral. The article indicates a new functional mutation in the spike protein, which had fewer non-silent mutations than other sites (IIRC) as it is such a crucial element to establish infections. I.e. the risk really is that there may be a change in the transmission, though it is still a bit early to tell. At this stage changes in frequency can also simply down to chance (e.g. how fast an outbreak was recognized and stopped). 

But not to worry, we will get a new pandemic with something new soon enough, especially if we continue to fail to improve our response.

Given that the permafrost is also melting in many regions, there has also been warnings previously that there could be very old viruses / bacteria in that permafrost,  which are dormant when frozen but as that permafrost melts are released.    We just don't know I guess.

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2 minutes ago, paulsutton said:

Given that the permafrost is also melting in many regions, there has also been warnings previously that there could be very old viruses / bacteria in that permafrost,  which are dormant when frozen but as that permafrost melts are released.    We just don't know I guess.

Well, yes, but infection risk for the most part (at least initially) is probably not a great concern. Human pathogens generally do not live in soil and viruses need a host to propagate. So the most likely scenario I could think of would be coming into contact with carcasses that have been infected and preserved. Not impossible but not very likely, either.

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Moderator Note

A major hijack has (finally, sorry) been split off. Unfortunately, the discussion was so full of willful ignorance and misinformation that I couldn't find a better place for it than the Trash. Please carry on with discussion of the OP.

 

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