There has been a new study published by the French group of researchers studying the use of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin to treat COVID-19 patients:
“Clinical and microbiological effect of a combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in 80 COVID-19 patients with at least a six-day follow up: an observational study”
From the abstract:
We need an effective treatment to cure COVID-19 patients and to decrease the virus carriage duration. In 80 in-patients receiving a combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin we noted a clinical improvement in all but one 86 year-old patient who died, and one 74 year-old patient still in intensive care unit. A rapid fall of nasopharyngeal viral load tested by qPCR was noted, with 83% negative at Day7, and 93% at Day8. Virus cultures from patient respiratory samples were negative in 97.5% patients at Day5. This allowed patients to rapidly de discharge from highly contagious wards with a mean length of stay of five days.
Also, a study has been published about treating COVID-19 patients with plasma from patients who have recovered from the disease:
“Treatment of 5 Critically Ill Patients With COVID-19 With Convalescent Plasma”
JAMA. Published online March 27, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.4783
From the Results section of the study:
All 5 patients (age range, 36-65 years; 2 women) were receiving mechanical ventilation at the time of treatment and all had received antiviral agents and methylprednisolone. Following plasma transfusion, body temperature normalized within 3 days in 4 of 5 patients, the SOFA score decreased, and Pao2/Fio2 increased within 12 days (range, 172-276 before and 284-366 after). Viral loads also decreased and became negative within 12 days after the transfusion, and SARS-CoV-2–specific ELISA and neutralizing antibody titers increased following the transfusion (range, 40-60 before and 80-320 on day 7). ARDS resolved in 4 patients at 12 days after transfusion, and 3 patients were weaned from mechanical ventilation within 2 weeks of treatment. Of the 5 patients, 3 have been discharged from the hospital (length of stay: 53, 51, and 55 days), and 2 are in stable condition at 37 days after transfusion.
Mats Lewan has written a blog post about the growth rate of COVID-19 infections and looks at it particularly from the Swedish perspective. Sweden is an interesting case because they are one of the few western countries that has not as yet introduced mandatory lockdown restrictions. Schools, restaurants and other public places are still open at this point.
He writes that in order to avoid overwhelming the health care services of countres, the growth rates of deaths (which he considers the most relevant statistic) needs to be kept below 10 per cent.
Here is an excerpt:
Now, the question is, will the mild measures in Sweden be enough to push down the spread of the disease, also pushing down the daily growth of deaths below 10 percent?
A number of favourable aspects have already helped us to keep the growth down initially (as we can see on the thin blue growth curve for Sweden):
Culturally, Swedish people have a tendency to do what they are asked to do for the common good, and we started relatively early with these behavioural recommendations, warned by Italy: Wash your hands, stay at home when you have symptoms, work from home if it is possible (and in Sweden it often is possible thanks to stable internet connections), avoid social contexts (some would claim that this comes naturally to us in Sweden…), protect the elderly by not meeting them etc.
We are reasonably helped by younger demographics compared to Southern Europe, and it probably also helps us that there is less daily contact between generations, traditionally.
BUT will this be enough to keep pushing down the daily growth below ten percent? Or will we need a lockdown too?
News is inevitably focused on coronavirus throughout the world these days. It seems that we are all held hostage to it to one degree of another, and it’s a problem that needs solving in order for life to progress. We have one thread that is getting very bulky with comments so I thought I would add new threads more regularly and include up-to-date stories that focus on possible solutions to the COVID-19 problem.
Thanks to Bob Greenyer for reporting on this first
Bahrain Health Chief Claims Hydroxychloroquine Treatment Effective in Treating COVID-19 Symptoms
“President of the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) Lt. General Dr. Shaikh Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, the Head of the National Taskforce to Combat Coronavirus (COVID-19), has affirmed that the therapeutic protocol of the Kingdom of Bahrain which uses Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) medication in treating COVID-19-infected cases has proved its effectiveness. He said the kingdom is one of the first countries that used the medication, pointing out its success in alleviating the symptoms of the virus and reducing its complications.”
Top epidemiologist predicts that the UK health system will be able to cope with COVID-19 cases.
“[Neil Ferguson, Imperial College London] said that expected increases in National Health Service capacity and ongoing restrictions to people’s movements make him “reasonably confident” the health service can cope when the predicted peak of the epidemic arrives in two or three weeks. UK deaths from the disease are now unlikely to exceed 20,000, he said, and could be much lower.”
We don’t know who the third party E-Cat SKL testers are yet, but Andrea Rossi has stated on the Journal of Nuclear Physics that he has been interacting with them over Skype during this period of disruption due to the coronavirus outbreak. I tried to get a little better picture of what has been going on by asking Rossi some questions:
March 26, 2020 at 2:53 AM
1. Do I understand correctly that you are interacting with third party testers via Skype?
2. Are you running tests on the E-Cat SKL in your lab that they are able to observe?
3. Are they compiling data about their observations?
4. When they are able, will they visit your lab, or will you go to them?
5. Will a report be written about this Skype testing, or is it more informal?
Thank you, and best wishes,
March 26, 2020 at 5:36 AM
5 it is more informal, for obvious reasons
So obviously this is not the ideal situation, nor could this be considered third party testing. A true third party test would require the testers to have hands-on contact with the E-Cat and be able to run their own experiments. But it sounds like Rossi is trying to do something to move his project along, and like most meetings these days it has to be done remotely.
I asked Rossi yesterday how productive and useful this Skype activity has been, he replied: “Very much, in preparation of the real stuff.”
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic seems to have perfectly coincided with Andrea Rossi’s plans for third party testing of the E-Cat SKL, which I am sure has been a frustrating situation for Rossi and his team to be in. He had said that there was a firm date for testing to start in the second half of March, but it’s hard to imagine that things could go on without interruption in the current environment.
I asked him about this today on the Journal of Nuclear Physics:
March 20, 2020 at 4:50 PM
Has the third party testing of the E-Cat SKL has started yet?
If not, has it been delayed by the CV?
March 21, 2020 at 4:43 AM
The C.V. obviously is limiting the tests. I will give information about the tests when they will have been terminated. We can do something by Skype in this moment, waiting for the end of this sanitary tsunami
It’s hard to imagine how one can carry out a third party test over Skype. Perhaps they are having some kind of videoconferencing with the testers, but it would seem that they will have to just wait for more favorable conditions in order to carry out the planned testing.
In another comment, Andrea Rossi wanted to make something very clear in response to a question about using the E-Cat to fight the coronavirus:
March 21, 2020 at 6:02 AM
I REPEAT: THE ECAT IS NOT A DEVICE THAT CAN HELP IN ANY WAY THE FIGHT ON COURSE AGAINST THE CORONA VIRUS.
PLEASE STOP THIS FAKE INFORMATION, THAT CAN ONLY MAKE CONFUSION AND DISTRACT FROM THE SOLE IMPORTANT INSTRUCTIONS, THAT ARE THE INSTRUCTIONS GIVEN FROM THE PHYSICIANS AND THE GOVERNMENTS.
DR ANDREA ROSSI,
CEO OF LEONARDO CORPORATION
Andrea Rossi has mentioned recently on the Journal of Nuclear Physics that he has been able to make further improvements on the E-Cat SKL. Today he provided a little more information about the nature of the improvements. So apparently the power density has been improved, along with amount of electricity generated.
March 18, 2020 at 9:48 AM
1. Do I understand correctly that the E-Cat SKL is smaller than when you announced it was a 10 cm cube?
2. If it is smaller, is the power output the same as in previous versions?
3. Has the ratio of electricity to heat produced increased over recent weeks?
March 18, 2020 at 11:47 AM
3- yes, the heat is less in percentage
Another question was asked about how he could carry on his work during the coronavirus restrictions:
March 18, 2020 at 11:47 AM
I suppose that wherever you are in Europe in this period you are confined in house for the corona virus:
1- how can you work ?
March 18, 2020 at 12:08 PM
1- Yes, also here the movements have been limited, but I have my laboratory adjacent to where I stay, so I work full time also with my collaborators in full respect of the given rules
Naturally I am following the unfolding story of the spread and impact of the coronavirus COVID-19 across the world. It has had a massive and devastating impact to many so far and it seems like serious problems will continue.
We talk a lot about science and technology here, but this is not a medical website. However I am sure that all readers here are being impacted by this pandemic to one degree or another. I thought it might be useful to put up a thread on the site with the purpose at looking at some of the possible scientific solutions out there that could be implemented that might help ease the situation.
We all want this thing to be dealt with swiftly and effectively, and with the information and communication resources at our disposal these days, it might be that we can tackle the problem more swiftly today than has been possible in the past. There are people all over the world working as we speak to try and find ways to deal with this virus.
In my experience, ECW readers tend to be inventive, creative and inclined to solve problems. The purpose of this thread is for readers to share information about possible scientific/medical solutions to the disease, with the hope that we might be able to have some kind of positive influence on the current situation.
This thread is not meant for general news and events surrounding COVID-19, which can be found on many, many sites all over the web. I’d like this thread to be focused on sharing scientific information that could prove useful in the fight to defeat this virus.
I wish all of you the best as we face this problem together.
Today I asked a question about the status of Leonardo Corporation’s business plan.
March 14, 2020 at 8:42 AM
How well-developed is your business plan at this point?
March 14, 2020 at 9:33 AM
Our business plan is well developed, prepared well together with Deloitte and foresees differenrt scenarios depending on the allegaices.
Thank you for your kind attention to our work,
It’s interesting that he mentions Deloitte here. Deloitte is a well-known multinational company that offers business services to clients around the world. Here is a description from Wikipedia:
Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited /dəˈlɔɪt ˈtuːʃ toʊˈmɑːtsuː/, commonly referred to as Deloitte, is a multinational professional services network. Deloitte is one of the “Big Four” accounting organizations and the largest professional services network in the world by revenue and number of professionals with headquarters in London, United Kingdom.
Deloitte provides audit, tax, consulting, enterprise risk and financial advisory services with approximately 312,000 professionals globally. In FY 2019, the network earned a record US$46.2 billion in aggregate revenues. As of 2017, Deloitte is the 4th largest privately owned company in the United States. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deloitte)
One would expect that Leonardo and any partners he is working with would be thinking big if they are using Deloitte’s consulting services. Deloitte would be up to speed on all the current business practices involved in launching new new technology like the E-Cat into the marketplace, and would be aware of some of the pitfalls and obstacles that might be faced.
Thanks to the readers who alerted me to an article on the Phys.org website about an article just published in Nature reporting on a Australian team of engineers who have managed to control nuclear spin exclusively with electric fields, rather than magnetic fields.
“In a study published today in Nature, a team of engineers at UNSW Sydney has done what a celebrated scientist first suggested in 1961 was possible, but has eluded everyone since: controlling the nucleus of a single atom using only electric fields.
“This discovery means that we now have a pathway to build quantum computers using single-atom spins without the need for any oscillating magnetic field for their operation,” says UNSW’s Scientia Professor of Quantum Engineering Andrea Morello. “Moreover, we can use these nuclei as exquisitely precise sensors of electric and magnetic fields, or to answer fundamental questions in quantum science.”
The original article in Nature can be accessed here: