Connect with us

Spread & Containment

Arrrrr on the rise

Anecdotally there are a lot of acute respiratory virus infections ripping through the community where I live. Particularly noticeable in schools but also…

Published

on

Anecdotally there are a lot of acute respiratory virus infections ripping through the community where I live. Particularly noticeable in schools but also workplaces. Yes, there is SARS-CoV-2 among these of course. Yes, that’s under-reported because many people will not be reporting their positive results. But also yes, there are other viruses driving this at the moment – “RAT negative viruses” as I like to call them (RNVs) – like the rhinoviruses (HRVs) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). That’s a lot of arrrs.

What is a RNV?

This is the question. Because the only rapid antigen tests we have in our households right now are those for SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19), RNVs are any virus that isn’t that!

These include a couple of hundred different “respiratory viruses”, many of which exhibit seasonal peaks of coughs, colds, headaches, fevers, wheezing, sneezing, bronchitis and a general feeling of crappiness.

The spectrum of respiratory viruses that can cause coughs, colds and more. Vaccines exit for influenza and SARS-CoV-2 and soon for RSV.

These are usually short (a couple of weeks) sharp acute illnesses caused by viruses that have an RNA genome, are endemic and they transmit via aerosols.

Because of that last point – they spread well in indoor spaces because they linger in the air, in tiny particles we exhale, talk, sing and cough out. Without adequate ventilation, or air filtration they accumulate, so the number of particles per volume of air gets higher and it becomes easier for us to inhale enough virus to get infected.

From the World Health Organisation (WHO).
They forgot to use the words “airborne” or “aerosol” again. But that’s the transmission route that all mitigation measures are addressing in this graphic. They are seeking to dilute, replace or pull out the floaty (not bigger wetter droplets) virus-laden particles from the air. A very effective process that all indoor public settings should already be adopting. This is less expensive and better for our world than the costs of war or corrupt politicians.
https://www.who.int/news-room/questions-and-answers/item/coronavirus-disease-covid-19-ventilation-and-air-conditioning

What RNV is in my local neighbourhood?

We generally keep a fairly appalling track of this. Both in terms of testing but also in communicating it to the public (you know, that first word in the term “public health”). Surveillance is just a very dirty word *cough JEV cough*.

One private pathology laboratory that does do a great job in this space for Queensland is Sullivan and Nicolaides Pathology. They produce a weekly report of the top 10 or so respiratory viruses that get identified by their laboratories across Queensland.

And two viruses (actually, groups of viruses) are notably trending upwards here right now – RSV and the HRVs.

Rhinovirus (HRV)-positive tests from SNP for the week ending 12/03/2022. https://www.snp.com.au/media/11750/20220312-snpir-influenza-graph.pdf
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)-positive tests from SNP for the week ending 12/03/2022. https://www.snp.com.au/media/11750/20220312-snpir-influenza-graph.pdf

These will be accounting for a big chunk of our coughs and colds. In the current climate, they will also be driving people to find a RAT to test for SARS-CoV-2 so they can at least exclude that virus and its remnant requirements for isolation away from work or school.

During a pandemic, even “common cold” viruses can impact our lives more than they used to. A good RAT for these could help to rule them in, or out. RATs that could reliably detect more than one virus group would even more useful.

Rhinovirus RAT race

The RAT is out of the bag now and the public is well engaged with exercising their individual rights to spend their own hard-earned cash on a less sensitive test (some RATs are far inferior to others) that have at times been very hard to find.

Given that we are likely to soon see influenza viruses join in the RAT race, I’d like to pitch for the rapid development of “rhinoRATs”. You’re welcome. I’ll take my payment for this brilliant concept in TimTams, please.

These would be RATs that pick up HRVs and thus provide the best bang for your buck in the home testing world.

A line in the RAT.
Image from Pexels.

Rhinoviruses are most often the cause of your acute respiratory illness for most of the year (not so much during flu season or peak pandemic periods). And yet they are not what we hear about. And often not what our samples get tested for.

If we go to the time, effort and expense to get a sample collected and processed, then shouldn’t we make sure we at least test for the likeliest pathogen? Yes, this has been a gripe of mine for many years.

The rhinoviruses have been known to us for quite a while.

Of course, a positive rhinoRAT result can’t exclude coinfection with one of the other viruses. But this would still be a useful tool if we accept that higher-quality pathology testing is to be replaced by RATs in some domains.

Meanwhile, if you haven’t already, get your third dose of COVID-19 vaccine as it’s still very much around and in play. Think about wearing a mask when you’re out and about. It will help to reduce the risk you will get one of these others. Escpailly if you just want to get that work done, or get one that pane. And maybe buy an extra box of tissues. If you haven’t already needed them, you probably will soon.

From the Wall Street Journal.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/cloth-face-mask-omicron-11640984082

Hits: 67

The post Arrrrr on the rise appeared first on Virology Down Under.

Read More

Continue Reading

Spread & Containment

Why Is The VIX So Low? A Surprising Answer Emerges In The Market’s Microstructure

Why Is The VIX So Low? A Surprising Answer Emerges In The Market’s Microstructure

One of the most frequent questions tossed around Wall Street…

Published

on

Why Is The VIX So Low? A Surprising Answer Emerges In The Market's Microstructure

One of the most frequent questions tossed around Wall Street trading desks (and strip clubs), and which was duly covered by Bloomberg recently in "Fear Has Gone Missing in Wall Street’s Slow-Motion Bear Market", is why despite the crushing bear market and the coming recession, does the VIX refuse to rise sustainably above 30, or in other words, why is the VIX so low?

As Goldman's Rocky Fishman wrote in a recent note "Option Markets Take the SPX Bear Market in Stride" (available to professional subs), "one of the most popular questions we have received is why the VIX hasn't surpassed its March peak (36) despite the SPX being lower than it was in March and realized vol being higher than it was in March."

Here, Fishman notes that implied volatility was unusually high in March, and the current VIX level (29) is only slightly low for the current level of realized vol. Furthermore, a VIX around 30 typically happens with the 5Y CDX HY spread above 600, and although it has risen steadily it's currently in the mid 500's.

Meanwhile, even as the VIX has fallen moderately since late April, both vol risk premium and skew have both fallen dramatically.

Picking up on this quandary, overnight JMorgan also joined the discussion with its analyst Peng Cheng laying out his own thoughts on why the VIX remains so low (note is also available to professional subs), and similar to Goldman notes that the current bear market, despite being deeper in magnitude, has produced VIX levels well below the peak observed during previous market sell-offs:

However, unlike Goldman which mostly analyzes the VIX in the context of a macro framework, JPM's Cheng offers observations based on his analysis of market microstructure in both equity and options markets.

Cheng starts with the previously noted low realized volatility: as the JPM strategist writes, YTD, the SPX realized vol, measured on a close to close basis, is only 25.5, which means that delta-hedged put options would have lost money in the gamma component. From a technical perspective, JPM believes that return volatility is dampened by a lack of intraday price momentum and increasingly frequent occurrences of intraday price reversal. As seen in the next chart, intraday reversal has only started to become noticeable in the last two years. Prior to that, intraday momentum was the dominant market behavior.

This diminishing intraday price momentum has had a non-trivial impact on realized volatility, according to JPM which estimates that if the intraday return correlation remained the same as pre-pandemic, YTD volatility would be close to 28.8, or 3.3 vol points higher than realized.

As an aside, those asking for the reason behind this change in intraday patterns in the last couple of years, Cheng notes that "this is a complex topic" but in short, his view is that it is a result of 1) crowding in intraday momentum trading strategies and 2) a potential shift in option gamma dynamics as discussed below.

Supply/demand of S&P 500 options: Although the estimation of market level option gamma profile is highly dependent on many factors, including assumptions on open interest, OTC options, and leveraged ETFs, etc., in a report published earlier this year, JPM's quants presented a more dynamic estimation of the gamma profile by using tick level data. Specifically, they assigned directions to SPX and SPY option trades based on their distance to the best bid/offer at the tick level, rather than the constant assumption of investors being outright long puts and short calls. The updated results are shown below.

Tha chart shows that starting in 2020, the put gamma imbalance has fallen meaningfully. This is the result of investors’ changing preference from buying outright puts to put spreads for protection, in JPM's view. And year to date, the decline in gamma demand has not improved. Moreover, and echoing what we have said on several recent occasions, JPM notes that judging from the outright negative put gamma imbalance in early 2022, it appears that investors have been monetizing hedges that had been held since 2021 - note the consistently positive and relatively elevated put gamma imbalance throughout 2021, which suggests that protections were put on during this period.

More in the full note available to pro subs

Tyler Durden Wed, 06/29/2022 - 15:05

Read More

Continue Reading

Spread & Containment

Dr. Stephen Kingsmore receives prestigious Precision Medicine World Conference 2022 Luminary Award

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – June 29, 2022 – Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine® (RCIGM) today announced that Stephen Kingsmore, MD, DSc, President…

Published

on

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – June 29, 2022 – Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine® (RCIGM) today announced that Stephen Kingsmore, MD, DSc, President and CEO, was presented with the Precision Medicine World Conference (PMWC) 2022 Luminary Award at this year’s conference in the Silicon Valley region of California for his innovation in rapid neonatal molecular diagnoses using whole-genome sequencing.

Credit: Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – June 29, 2022 – Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine® (RCIGM) today announced that Stephen Kingsmore, MD, DSc, President and CEO, was presented with the Precision Medicine World Conference (PMWC) 2022 Luminary Award at this year’s conference in the Silicon Valley region of California for his innovation in rapid neonatal molecular diagnoses using whole-genome sequencing.

The Luminary Award recognizes the recent contributions of prominent figures who have accelerated precision medicine into the clinic. Additional PMWC 2022 honorees included Dr. Albert Bourla, Pfizer, for his extraordinary achievement in leading the record-time development of a vaccine and antiviral drug against the coronavirus and Dr. Stephen Hoge, Moderna, for overseeing R&D of the first antiviral synthetic mRNA vaccines ever created, including the one against COVID-19.

“I am honored to receive this award and be among this extraordinary group of past and present recipients focused on the clinical adoption of precision medicine,” said Dr. Kingsmore. “At RCIGM, we are transforming pediatric healthcare through the power of Rapid Precision Medicine™ by offering the fastest delivery of rapid Whole Genome Sequencing™ to enable prompt diagnosis and targeted treatment of critically ill newborns and children in intensive care. We know that time matters – a fast, molecular diagnosis can make the difference between improved outcomes and a lifetime of disability, or even life itself.”

Dr. Kingsmore leads a multi-disciplinary team of scientists, physicians, genetic counselors, software engineers and bioinformaticians who are pioneering the use of rWGS® to enable precise diagnoses for critically ill newborns. In 2021, he led the RCIGM team to set a new record of 13.5 hours for achieving the fastest molecular diagnosis using rWGS, breaking his previous 2018 world record of 19.5 hours. 

PMWC is the largest and original annual conference dedicated to precision medicine. PMWC’s mission is to bring together recognized leaders, top global researchers and medical professionals, and innovators across healthcare and biotechnology sectors to showcase practical content that helps close the knowledge gap between different sectors, thereby catalyzing cross-functional fertilization and collaboration in an effort to accelerate the development and spread of precision medicine.

Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine

Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine is transforming neonatal and pediatric health care by harnessing the power of Rapid Precision Medicine™ to improve the lives of children and families facing rare genetic disease. Founded by Rady Children’s Hospital and Health Center, the Institute offers the fastest delivery of rapid Whole Genome Sequencing™ to enable prompt diagnosis and targeted treatment of critically ill newborns and children in intensive care. The Institute now provides clinical genomic diagnostic services for a growing network of more than 70 children’s hospitals. The vision is for this life-changing technology to become standard of care and enable clinicians nationwide to provide rapid, personalized care. Learn more about the non-profit Institute at RadyGenomics.org. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Media Contact:

Ben Metcalf
bmetcalf@rchsd.org
+1 (619) 822-8593
 


Read More

Continue Reading

Government

Fauci Suffers “Much Worse” COVID Symptoms After ‘Paxlovid Rebound’

Fauci Suffers "Much Worse" COVID Symptoms After ‘Paxlovid Rebound’

Fully-vaxx’d and double-boosted mask-admirer Anthony Fauci is suffering.

Two…

Published

on

Fauci Suffers "Much Worse" COVID Symptoms After 'Paxlovid Rebound'

Fully-vaxx'd and double-boosted mask-admirer Anthony Fauci is suffering.

Two weeks ago, we reported that President Biden's chief medical adviser had COVID.

The 81-year-old reportedly had 'mild symptoms' and of course he 'said the words'...

Of course, Fauci followed the CDC guidelines and ingested the government-blessed treatment - Paxlovid - due to his age and possible risks from the virus.

So, that should have been it right?

But no. During an event at Foreign Policy’s Global Health Forum, Fauci admitted he had not had a good experience:

“After I finished the five days of Paxlovid, I reverted to negative on an antigen test for three days in a row,” Fauci said Tuesday .

“And then on the fourth day, just to be absolutely certain, I tested myself again. I reverted back to positive.”

Interestingly, Fauci admitted:

"...this is becoming more and more typical based on more clinical studies..."

As Bloomberg reports, large numbers of patients have reported the phenomenon, often called Covid rebound or Paxlovid rebound, of returning symptoms after taking a full course of Pfizer’s drug.

While Pfizer Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourlasaid in May that doctors could prescribe a second course of treatment to such patients, US drug regulators have said there’s no evidence that a repeat will help.

However, Fauci said he started taking a second course of Paxlovid after experiencing symptoms “much worse than in the first go around.”

Now near completion of the five-day oral treatment, he said he was still enduring symptoms but felt “reasonably good.”

Finally, as we reported less than two weeks ago, Pfizer stopped enrolling in a clinical trial for Paxlovid for standard-risk COVID-19 patients after the latest results suggested the drug did not reduce symptoms or hospitalizations and deaths to a statistically significant degree.

Watch the full interview below: (forward to around 5:26:00):

Not exactly encouraging news...

Tyler Durden Wed, 06/29/2022 - 11:45

Read More

Continue Reading

Trending