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CoronaVirus — huge ghost statistics mysteriously come and go. A hint of much worse?

Ooh. Are these the real figures? Is someone on the inside trying to leak out the truth?

There are claims tonight that a flickering set of figures have appeared that are much higher than the official tolls. These ghostly statistics have appeared three times then switched to the much lower official tally. But each time they grow — almost as if there are two sets of data, one for officials, and one for the public.

Ominously, the flickering death tally was 80 times higher than the official one. The infections were ten times higher. If it’s true the death rate may be far worse than the 2% bandied about.

If they are real, this changes everything. If they are fake, who or what would benefit? A glitch?

From Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge, and the Taiwan Times, h/t David E.

Tencent may have accidentally leaked real data on Wuhan virus deaths

Tencent briefly lists 154,023 infections and 24,589 deaths from Wuhan coronavirus

Taiwan Times

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — As many experts question the veracity of China’s statistics for the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, Tencent over the weekend seems to have inadvertently released what is potentially the actual number of infections and deaths, which were astronomically higher than official figures.

On late Saturday evening (Feb. 1), Tencent, on its webpage titled “Epidemic Situation Tracker”, showed confirmed cases of novel coronavirus (2019nCoV) in China as standing at 154,023, 10 times the official figure at the time. It listed the number of suspected cases as 79,808, four times the official figure.

The number of cured cases was only 269, well below the official number that day of 300. Most ominously, the death toll listed was 24,589, vastly higher than the 300 officially listed that day.

The image on the left below, shows the numbers that appeared briefly on Saturday. Beside it are the official figures that appeared soon after.

Corona Virus ghost figures, Tencent, death toll.

The odd glitch (left) the official figures (right) Columns: Confirmed cases, suspected cases, recovered, deaths.

Tyler Durden:

Did China’s Tencent Accidentally Leak The True Terrifying Coronavirus Statistics

Ten days ago, shortly after China first started reporting the cases and deaths associated with the coronavirus epidemic, a UK researcher predicted that over 250,000 Chinese would be infected with the virus by February 4. And while according to official Chinese data, the number of infections has indeed soared in the past two weeks, at just under 25,000 (and roughly 500 deaths), it is a far cry from this dismal prediction

On Jan 25th experts from the University of Hong Kong (HKU) estimated that the number of cases in Wuhan were as high as 44,000. So the larger viral infection figure would fit.

The ghost figures come from China’s Tencent – one of the largest video game tech companies in the world. It has a webpage “Epidemic Situation Tracker”. Late on Saturday night  briefly it listed the number of suspected cases as 79,808 when the official figure was about one quarter of that.

Ominously, the figure for deaths was 24,589 which reverted back to 304 soon after.

2019-nCoV

2019-nCoV

This is not how a nation reacts to “the flu”

If this is true, it explains the incredible images coming out of China — of deserted streets, armed patrols, people forcibly boarding up apartments to stop others from leaving, and of forced evictions. Hazmat suited people can be seen coming to take patients away who really really don’t want to go and who are being dragged into ambulances. It explains why the communist government suddenly launched into building new pop up hospitals, and it explains the images of hundreds of beds, in row upon row in town halls and large buildings.

Perhaps it even explains why the position of leaders like Trump and then Scott Morrison suddenly took such decisive action on Saturday. If there were spies on the inside reporting out, perhaps a few key leaders were informed things were were worse than they seemed.

Probably, the spies only needed to be watching #coronavirus on twitter.

(These should show images and movies, if not, try another browser).

 

 



There are some truly awful things on #coronavirus. Animals being burned alive. People saying goodbye to loved ones who are medical workers as if it may be the last time they see them. People refusing to get their temperature taken and being beaten.

We are fortunate that numbers are not increasing in the West as fast as the 20% (whatever that means) increase daily that was officially stated in China. So far people appear to be suffering lower grade, and recoverable infections.

There is still the possibility that there are thousands of unrecorded infections in China where people recovered or didn’t even get sick — that could bring the death rate back down.

Corona Virus statistics

Corona Virus statistics

News.com is covering this story now:

Image deleted from Tencent sparks doubt about official virus tally

This week Chinese University of Hong Kong professor David Hui-Shu-choeng said the official tally could be the “tip of the iceberg” as it only reflected those who were in hospital.

“There are many community cases that remain undiagnosed – unlike in Hong Kong, where cases are more carefully handled, including the mild ones. Of the 15 confirmed cases [in Hong Kong], 10 of [the patients] didn’t even need to be put on oxygen,” Hui told the South China Morning Post

“So we’re talking about different denominators here. For an actual picture, one usually has to wait until after the outbreak settles for a general population, zero-prevalence study to be carried out – where blood tests would reflect the number of positive cases containing the antibody without presenting the symptoms,” Hui said.

Something truly dreadful going on in China.

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Rating: 9.6/10 (52 votes cast)
CoronaVirus -- huge ghost statistics mysteriously come and go. A hint of much worse?, 9.6 out of 10 based on 52 ratings

132 comments to CoronaVirus — huge ghost statistics mysteriously come and go. A hint of much worse?

  • #
    Richard

    The videos from inside China that Jennifer Zeng tweets, hint at a much higher death rate than we are being told. I don’t know what to make of some of the videos, as to whether they are real, or for some reason staged. If real, then they are truly disturbing, and the truth is being kept from us big time.

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    • #

      hint at a much higher death rate than we are being told.

      explain. What is your reasoning? What is your expectation for different levels of panic? how do you arrive at this conclusion?

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      • #
        PeterS

        I tend to agree. There’s too much speculation going on here. Better to wait and see. If there is a major and serious virus on the loose then we will see many more infections and deaths all around the world soon enough. At the moment it’s not anywhere near being classified as a pandemic. Epidemic perhaps – localised in China. Also if China is covering up the real numbers of infections and deaths it’s most likely to avoid a world wide panic spreading to the financial markets. I can understand that. Let’s hope they can successfully contain it in China and avoid a pandemic. I’d also be concerned about the bird and swine flues just detected. If they get into the human population the situation will be much worse than the corona virus.

        62

        • #

          It is a simple matter of being skeptical. This article is skeptical about official figures – that’s fine- but you have to also be skeptical about alternatives and doubly so when some anonymous person puts up “ideas” without attribution.

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          • #
            hatband

            You’re starting from the point of view that Governments always tell the Truth

            until proven otherwise.

            To put it gently, that’s hopelessly naive.

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      • #

        Gee Aye:
        explain. What is your reasoning? What is your expectation for different levels of panic? how do you arrive at this conclusion?

        Read the post before you comment. Sources: Taiwan News, News.com, two medical studies, 1000 tweets of images and movies from inside China. Please don’t dilute and clog up the top of the thread with unresearched prejudice.

        PS: Waste of time, ill-informed comments are being removed.

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    • #
      Treeman

      Richard, Jennifer is an activist and her twitter feed reflects that she has an axe to grind. Apocalyptic assumptions are never helpful, especially extrapolations based on one hearse at one hospital in a city with half the population of Australia.

      14

      • #
        Richard

        I know the danger of wild speculation , Treeman. I’ve simply made an observation. There is more there , btw, than just an ambulance at a hospital. Anyway, we’re all going to know soon enough.

        50

  • #
    Alfred

    All these numbers fail to mention the ethnicity of those infected and those dead. Is this normal? Is it taboo to point out that different peoples have different immunities?

    When the British had Nigeria as a colony, the average life expectancy of a district commissioner or any such civil servant sent there was 3 years. Obviously, the indigenous peoples had resistance to many of the diseases that Europeans died from.

    I suspect that almost all those who have died are Asians. Maybe I am wrong, but where are the numbers?

    To make the whole planet panic and begin to think of a lockdown when it is largely an Asian phenomenon is a real scandal.

    102

    • #

      Alfred, it’s far too early to draw any conclusions on death rates. With only two deaths outside China there is no data let alone error bars.

      Seriously — the real scandal would be getting this wrong with a quarantine that was too late…

      190

      • #
        Alfred

        I agree it is too early to jump to conclusions. But why does one have to try to guess the ethnicity of those who recovered?

        For example, a Chinese lady came to visit a motor parts company and infected a German (probably European). The German seem to have recovered – but not before passing the infection on to others in the company. The Chinese lady went back to China and we don’t know what has become of her.

        My guess is that the Germans are not so susceptible to this virus. That should be front page news IMHO.

        New coronavirus can spread before symptoms start, German case suggests

        71

        • #
          Alfred

          All four of the German employees with 2019-nCov were hospitalized in Munich for monitoring. So far, none of these four patients show signs of severe illness.

          60

          • #

            Alfred, and if 100,000 chinese people already had the same reaction as the Germans — how would we know?

            You can ask the question. But there is no answer yet. And it may be that western medicine, health, diet, past infections, cleaner air, all could change the odds.

            160

            • #
              Treeman

              Jo, one is is certain, Guandong and Shenzhen, Hong Kong and Taiwan have top tier hospitals compared to Wuhan and access to western medicines.

              Cleaner air isn’t a factor for me as most cities in China have pollution issues. One thing I can’t agree with is the wild theories that ethnicity has anything to do with how well or otherwise an individual deals with the virus.

              36

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                It’s becoming very clear ( unfortunately )
                that different genetic backgrounds
                Is leading to different capacities in many individuals ability
                To resist this new disease.

                We ware watching a huge awful tragedy unfold in China.
                It is becoming clear that the Chinese government
                Is not releasing accurate statistics
                About the number of people infected
                The number of people who have died.

                50

              • #

                On genes. Nothing is clear yet.

                60

              • #
                AP

                Treeman, bioweapons have been considered that target certain ethnicities for sure.

                For example, see page 72 of pdf

                00

              • #
                Graeme Bird

                Bill even before we go to genes there are other factors. Like a high carb diet, selenium deprived soils. Pre-existing lung problems due to air pollution. We don’t need to run straight for the gene hypothesis when there are so many potential confounding factors. Genes is just one hypothesis among many.

                30

              • #
                hatband

                Treeman said:

                One thing I can’t agree with is the wild theories that ethnicity has anything to do with how well or otherwise an individual deals with the virus.

                Has anyone made that suggestion?

                Or are you just building another of your Strawmen?

                10

            • #
              OriginalSteve

              Jo, my suspicion is that while it may be highly infectious, if its in fact a targetted pathogen ( i.e. genetic ) then one genetic group may recover fine but others may not.

              If so then this tells us thats its unlikely originated from within china…..and could therefore be potentially an act of war.

              Yes its pure speculation, lets wait and see. I hope Im wrong.

              81

              • #

                Suppose the Chinese stole the virus and then lost containment. Loss of containment has happened before in China.

                I’d call that an act of stupidity.

                The theft was from a Canadian lab. No specifics on what was stolen.

                How is that for wilder speculation?

                110

              • #
                OriginalSteve

                Its also possible it was a deliberate “honey trap”…

                30

            • #
              peter

              Jo, I commented 2 days ago that symptomless infection is unlikely. There is no mechanism for that. No-one remarked on my comment but those claimed symptom-free infections probably occurred from low symptom expression. When I get a cold, I’m a mess of symptoms. Other people get some minor congestion and feel a bit unwell – that’s all. Viruses need aerosol transmission or some contact with body fluid. You cannot get it from just being in the same room as them. So don’t handshake, high-five or hug an otherwise infected person or touch surfaces they have handled. Your “face-mask” wont save you. My work involves assessment and measuring aerosols, among other things. Those clinical masks worn by many people are almost totally useless. The gap between face and mask, on some people, would let a blowfly get in. I’ve worked in hospitals and those videos of Chinese infected patients lying on the floor in crowded corridors was so bad that I would conclude that Chinese victims go to hospital to die and/or infect other people. Tragic !

              A good movie to watch, as a tongue-in-cheek analogy would be World War Z, where Brad Pitt saves the world from a Zombie virus. Israel was the last country to remain un-invaded because they built “A Great Big Wall” – thanks Donald.

              31

              • #

                Peter: “symptomless infection is unlikely. ”

                Pace Galileo: And yet influenza, polio, typhoid, EBV, HIV, all spread asymptomatically…

                But let’s hope it is not for a long time before symptoms show, and that there are not super spreaders.

                100

              • #
                AP

                That is correct for surgical masks. Respirators (N95 and P2) are another story. While not perfect, it is possible to get a good fit. Cartridge respirators with a rubber face mask are better yet again.

                Ive used a lot of respirators for a variety of tasks including in the dustiest parts of aN underground coal mine, and your face is clean under the mask after a shift of hard work, filthy from dust everywhere else – and no black boogers. Ive also used cartridge respirators with activated charcoal when spray painting, which completely block odours, indicating there is no leakage.

                The government advice that respirators are useless is dangerous and wrong.

                50

              • #
                peter

                Thanks Jo. But, I believe that, Poliovirus spread by ‎fecal-oral route. Typhoid and EBV both by food/water. HIV spread only via body fluids, specifically blood or semen, though symptomatic people appear to be more infective (higher viral count?). Symptoms otherwise don’t have much to do with your examples. Influenza is only example you gave that is definitely a symptomatic infection and it’s far less infective from people who appear not to have symptoms. This Coronavrius is shaping up as more infective than influenza – scary.

                I would still argue that apparent asymptomatic infection is from people with less apparent symptoms. If it is possible for infection to occur from people with zero symptoms – please explain the mechanism? Not so easy to answer.

                ps for people on about respirator protection; even P2 masks are believed to allow up to 10% of aerosol contaminants to penetrate, even from well fitted masks and most observed masks are not that well fitted. Think about that if you find yourself in a cloud of infected person sneeze or cough?

                00

              • #

                Peter, my point was only that symptomless transmission happened — just because we haven’t figured out the mechanism for CoV doesn’t mean it isn’t occurring. Why wouldnt it be possible for a healthy seeming person to shed infectious particles but not get sick? Most symptoms are due to immune activation, not direct viral action — at least initially. If lung epithelium were producing particles that could be breathed out there’s not necessarily a cough or a sneeze, yet there is sharing…. Likewise gastrointestinal shedding may leave traces on door knobs.

                Lets hope it doesn’t happen to a large extent here.

                20

              • #
                peter

                Thanks again Jo. I take your point. But I tend to analyse things quantitatively (unlike climate change scientists?). Without coughing and sneezing the amount of airborne aerosol generated would be tiny. Photos of people sneezing and coughing, using background lighting effects, has shown many hundreds of aerosol particles emitted with every cough or sneeze. The same photos of people just breathing shows no aerosol emission. I fully accept your point on surface contamination.

                Tragically, the photo of the Chinese doctor who raised alarm about the virus only to die from it himself the other day showed him wearing a clinical mask with gaping holes (that I could see) between his face and the sides of his mask.

                00

            • #
              Alfred

              And it may be that western medicine, health, diet, past infections, cleaner air, all could change the odds.

              I congratulate you on trying to make sure that Google or some such outfit does not ban your website. The reality is that genes do matter. The Chinese are not so very far behind the West in all the factors that you mentioned. They certainly had far fewer people crapping in the street in Wuhan than they currently do in Los Angeles. :-)

              Candidate genes associated with susceptibility for SARS-coronavirus

              The man who wrote the US BioWeapons Act, Dr Francis Boye, believes that the only reason for the existence of levels 4 and 5 laboratories is for the creation of such genetic weapons and their vaccines.

              Wuhan Coronavirus IS an Offensive Biological Warfare Weapon Dr Francis Boyle (Youtube)

              20

              • #

                I congratulate you on trying to make sure that Google or some such outfit does not ban your website.

                Nope. As if my comments would change that? I’m a skeptic. Watch the video of what doctors inside China are saying on this post. http://joannenova.com.au/2020/02/coronavirus-borders-closing-all-around-the-world-no-thanks-to-the-who/ Cultural habits and hygiene and diet are self-evidently, obviously different from the West. Unless someone has lived in China recently it seems rash to claim knowledge of conditions there.

                Perhaps this is a natural outbreak — it’s believable. Perhaps this is a bioweapon leak accidentally in China. Also believable.

                I didn’t claim genes have no effect. I effectively said there were multiple factors and no data. I’ll repeat: There’s “no data”. Anyone know which races of the 20 on the cruise ship acquired the infection? Didn’t think so. Even if they did, it’s more likely that close contacts (ie same race) as the infected man who got off in HK would be more likely to get an infection.

                The PMID link is interesting, but no racial stats and a SARS gene may or may not be relevant. Again, please people, use the same skepticism we use in the climate world. All official figures are suspect. Anything is possible. Ask for empirical data.

                110

              • #
                Rob JM

                There is evidence the this virus binds to the ACE2 receptor that has a 40% incidence in East Asians vs 20% in Europeans. So genetically we may have a 50% reduction in risk as a result.

                Also Lung health plays a key role in ARDS outcome.
                The main factors are
                Age
                Low white blood cells
                Lung health (smoking, but pollution would contribute)
                High blood pressure (more fluid goes into lungs)

                The virus may also be less transmissible in warm climates as other corona viruses are winter seasonal like flu.

                It took 7 weeks from the start of the infection in Wuhan till the deaths started taking off. 2/3rd of death 20-40 days post infection, 1/3rd 40-100 days post infection for viral pneumonia. Death rate 15-25%. China currently has 50k pneumonia cases, 250K infections if you know how to read between the lines.

                50

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                Jo there is an elephant in the room
                Which we are all missing.
                The Chinese Communist Party government
                Has effectively locked in the homes & quarantined
                1,400,000,000 people
                I’ll say that again One Billion & four hundred million people.
                The entire Chinese nation is in lockdown -save a few millions in Hong Kong & Taiwan
                1: This has NEVER been done before in human history.
                2: There must be a huge and urgent emergency reason for even attempting to do this.

                Yet the official figures are 26,000 people infected and 560 people dead.
                THIS DOES NOT COMPUTE

                40

              • #

                Though, read my first corona virus post again… The official stats were much smaller than the estimates even then, but with exponential growth it was only 3 weeks til the official stats grew to equal the scary estimates.

                Remember it was only 12 weeks from 80,000 til 320 million infections with a doubling of 6 days.

                50

              • #
                Kalm Keith

                Thanks Rob JM,

                A good read.

                10

    • #
      Lance

      Alfred, with respect to Nigeria:

      The vast majority of Nigerians at the time you identify, carried the genetic trait for sickle cell anemia which provides significant immunity to malaria at the cost of ending their lives at age 35 (approx).

      The White Europeans did not have sickle cell anemia and were therefore quite unprotected with respect to the effects of malaria. Therein lies their 3 yr expected lifespan in Nigeria.

      The Corona Virus does not seem to have any specificity with regard to race thus far.

      It may be that some Asians have some degree of natural immunity. That said, the rate of terminal effects is at least 2% to 3% which is not unusual for a corona virus. If the “TenCent website leaked” rates/videos are accurate, the terminal rates are 10 times that previously supposed.

      Yes, there are significant costs to “overestimating effects” and there are consequences, both economic, political, and life impacting, to excessive quarantines and wholesale shutdown of supply chains.

      The problem is that the Chinese Govt is not being open and honest about infection rates, origins, relationships with the Wuhan Level 4 Bio Containment facility, etc.

      Absent total transparency and communications, it is wise to be cautious.

      The Genie is already out of the bottle.
      The question is where/when/how things improve.

      70

      • #
        Alfred

        The vast majority of Nigerians at the time you identify, carried the genetic trait for sickle cell anemia which provides significant immunity to malaria at the cost of ending their lives at age 35 (approx).

        That is only one part of it. Most Europeans died from water-borne infections – not malaria.

        As soon as Europeans started filtering their water using filters such as the Berkefeld filter, their life expectancies increased dramatically.

        In any event, your point about sickle cell anemia merely reinforced my message that there is a genetic component to the Coronavirus epidemic and that this aspect is being totally neglected. I can only presume that is because of the current fetish in Australia of considering races a figment of our misguided imaginations and so on – Political Correctness.

        10

        • #
          Kalm Keith

          PC.

          Many years ago I thought I read material that said that people with a particular blood type were unable to handle alcohol.

          An inherited genetic thing.

          Checking yesterday I could find discussion on the issue regarding Asians but not for the other Australian original inhabitants group.

          The topic with respect to AOIs was pc’d into a discussion on prejudice ‘re their drinking and no trace of the other thing could be found.

          KK

          30

        • #
          sophocles

          To get sickle-cell anemia, a sufferer had to inherit the trait from both parents, ie: both parents had to be carriers. The trait endowed the carriers with increased resistance to malaria. The child born with full sickle-cell anemia trait was sickly and not so long-lived.

          It’s difficult to be healthy when one can’t breathe and one’s red cells form clumps.

          see:
          CALDER, Nigel: The Life Game; Evolution and the new Biology 1973, The Viking Press, NY.
          Chap 1.
          ISBN: 670-42798-5

          ============================

          To Kalm Keith: @ #2.2.1.1:

          I thought I read material that said that people with a particular blood type were unable to handle alcohol.

          Ah! That would have to be O-positive. We’ve produced far and away the greatest number of drunkards and alcoholics in the world! :-D

          60

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            Re O pos.
            Not sure, I thought it was A.

            Regardless, the effect I heard of and saw was that alcohol couldn’t be tolerated. Almost an immediate effect that made it unlikely the person affected would continue drinking.

            KK

            10

  • #
    Jacques Lemiere

    official chinese statistics…
    it is still dictatorship and still ideological ….

    140

  • #
    • #
      Latus Dextro

      Yes, it is far beyond “interesting” sg. It seems possible that the 2019-nCoV Virus (Wuhan coronavirus) was manipulated in the lab. Somehow it made it to the wider population. The Beijing communist thugs will probably prefer that is not public knowledge, nor will they want to be associated with an emergent crisis whether local or global, whose size may be significant. Some commentators elsewhere have even argued that this is the commie thugs, ‘Chernobyl moment’.

      From the linked article (above #5) by James Lyons-Weiler, PhD – 30/Jan/2020 – On the Origins of the 2019-nCoV Virus, Wuhan, China
      (and also, as discussed here in: Scientific Puzzles Surrounding the Wuhan Novel Coronavirus Updated: February 3, 2020, which appears to suggest that the spliced in portion of the novel 2019-nCoV coronavirus may be derived from HIV(!))


      The available evidence most strongly supports that the 2019-NCoV virus is a vaccine strain of coronavirus either accidentally released from a laboratory accident, perhaps a laboratory researcher becoming infected with the virus while conducting animal experiments, or the Chinese were performing clinical studies of a Coronavirus vaccine in humans.

      Dr. Dale Brown brought to my attention the studies that have reported serious immunopathology in animals – rats, ferrets, and monkeys – in which animals vaccinated against coronoviruses tended to have extremely high rates of respiratory failure upon subsequent exposure in the study when challenged with the wild-type coronavirus.

      If the Chinese government has been conducting human trials against SARS. MERS, or other coronviruses using recombined viruses, they may have made their citizens far more susceptible to acute respiratory distress syndrome upon infection with 2019-nCoV coronavirus.

      The implications are clear: if China sensitized their population via a SARS vaccine, and this escaped from a lab, the rest of world has a serious humanitarian urgency to help China, but may not expect as serious an epidemic as might otherwise be expected.

      In the worst-case scenario, if the vaccination strain is more highly contagious and lethal, 2019-nCoV could become the worst example of vaccine-derived contagious disease in human history. With an uncharacteristic aysmptomatic prodromal period of 5-7 days, individuals returning from China to other countries must be forthright and cooperative in their now-prescribed 2-week quarantine.

      50

      • #

        this is the anti-vacc guy? You might want to check who you are un-skeptically getting into bed with.

        [Don't post pure ad homs. Do better. - Jo]

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        • #
          sg

          I agree, caution is needed! It is only ‘interesting’ nothing more!

          10

          • #
            sg

            Please tell us why a discussion concerning the presence of a SARS-like spike protein in the Wuhan virus is unscientific or uninteresting? If you specifically disagree with the conclusions reached please provide proof that the SARS-like spike protein is from a natural recombination event between the two viruses. Surely even the opportunity to discount the involvement of a man-made vector is interesting?

            40

        • #
          Latus Dextro

          GA – No one’s getting into bed with anyone. Skepticism has no place in the bedroom. Indeed, what a revealingly strange metaphor to chose.
          James Lyons-Weiler, PhD — On the Origins of the 2019-nCoV Virus, Wuhan, China, offers four hypothesis on the origins of the 2019-nCoV Coronavirus isolated from human patients from Wuhan, China, which essentially remain to be proved, although he expresses his view and analysis of each option presenting what evidence there may be.
          His analysis of the virus is indeed interesting and further, it may be read in context with another article (and its associated comments, some clearly from experts) in The Epoch Times article, Scientific Puzzles Surrounding the Wuhan Novel Coronavirus Updated: February 3, 2020 (see above # 5.1 for link).

          Option 1. Natural coronavirus related to bat coronaviruses, Not a Recombined Virus.
          Option 2. A recombined virus that naturally picked up a SARS-like spike protein in it N-terminus (3′ end) of the viral genome.
          Option 3. A recombined virus made in a laboratory for the purpose of creating a bioweapon.
          Option 4. A recombined virus made in a laboratory for the purpose of creating a vaccine.

          20

          • #
            Konrad

            It’s not option #3 on available evidence. The sequence is not “Frankenstein”

            I’m going with option #1 or #4 combined with poor procedures at the lab.

            But we have the sequence. Therefore source is no longer an issue in effecting a solution. A rapid cost effective test is. This is where max effort should be focused.

            Blame is just politics. Blame is not helpful at this point. Only science will help.

            10

    • #

      I bet we don’t see you again… bots these days!

      Anyway you linked to a mishmash of ideas brought inexpertly together to come up with some dog whistles. There are only four citations listed (missing several mentioned in the text) and those are misused anyway.

      88

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        I think there is way more to this than meets the eye.

        We have no idea what happens in some coutries with “off the record” reasearch.

        40

  • #
    Konrad

    Logic tells us that China has not been truthful from the very start. At the beginning of the year they claimed a small amount of sick and deceased from a novel flu virus. They claimed all victims were elderly or had preexisting conditions.

    But was flu season. They couldn’t have noticed such a small number of such persons affected against the background of the hundreds normally expected to get critically ill or die of more conventional flu.

    So logically something was abnormal about the age/health of the victims, their symptoms, or the numbers affected for their health system to have noticed something was wrong.

    From the leaked videos, I conclude that a number of the victims exhibited the symptoms of cytokine cascade, similar to the 1918 flu.

    110

    • #

      Logic tells us that local health officials were initially out of their depth so at the beginning of the year they claimed a small amount of sick and deceased from a novel flu virus. Luckily this changed with more information at hand. They claimed all victims were elderly or had preexisting conditions because those were actually rthe main type of people who died in the early stages.

      410

  • #
    Konrad

    As to the “ghost numbers”, they could well be accurate.

    We have leaked information on the numbers of vehicles arriving at crematorium and their now 24 hour operation. However these numbers need to be moderated with the news that the government has ordered that all persons in the quarantine zones who pass away in hospital, must be immediately cremated without a service and burial is banned. So the numbers would necessarily include all other deaths of other common causes.

    That said, the US doesn’t need spies on the ground as they have satellites in space. If the problem is as large as suspected, they can see the Chinese response day and night. This is why they would ignore the politically compromised WHO.

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    • #

      what you’ve just written could have been made up by you the moment before you wrote it.

      Who is “we”. What was leaked?

      [Read the post GA. This is pathetic. - Jo]

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      • #
        TedM

        GA I have a friend who does business in China. Four factories that produce his products are closed, at least one of his managers has fled overseas. He has information coming back from contacts in China (of which he has many) that support the worst reports that we see coming out of China. There are many Chinese in this country that have family in China and get reports from that family. They are buying up large quantities of surgical masks and sending them back home. It appears that they are doing the same with hand sanitiser. The sudden decision by our PM and the US President to greatly restrict air traffic from China on the same day. All point in one direction. For myself, I am strongly persuaded that the temporary figures shown by tencent are probably correct

        Anyway, time will at least demonstrate part of the truth. If it gets a hold in Australia and we don’t have a vaccine by next winter we will be able to judge for ourselves.

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      • #

        Jo- clearly again I was referring to Konrad and his unsupported assertions. No one else questioned him because that would be admitting that this blog gives them a license to make stuff up to make the group feel good.

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    Konrad

    Beyond the doom and gloom there is a way to get this problem under control and relax travel restrictions and quarantine periods.

    A vaccine is months away, but that is not what brought SARS under control. It was rapid detection of possible carriers.

    What we still lack is a rapid cost effective test for asymptomatic persons for 2019 nCoV, even if it has a percentage of false positives. This is where maximum scientific effort should be focused.

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      Rob JM

      There were no sars carriers, You were not infectious until you became (very) sick
      This is like flu, but much worse if you are old with medical conditions.

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    Penguinite

    Un-Diagnosed cases that don’t present overt symptoms are potentially carriers and the scourge of any society ravaged by disease. Influenza is a prime example. A couple of years ago we traveled to Hobart as fit septuagenarians. We, inadvertently joined one of those bus tours to Port Arthur and within 24 hours were virtually disabled with flu. It was probably the closeness, to other people, coupled with the sealed environment of the bus. It was impossible to protect against the invisible enemy!

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      Bill In Oz

      Only anecdotal Penguibite
      But years ago I went to Port Arthur
      In Winter
      No flu at all !
      But we went in our our hired car
      With family.

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      Alfred

      We, inadvertently joined one of those bus tours to Port Arthur and within 24 hours were virtually disabled with flu.

      I am almost as old as you. As a matter of principle, I never go on tours anywhere. I think ocean cruises are a very bad idea. I am currently in Kiev and even going on the metro is something that I try to avoid.

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    TedM

    I’m tending to believe that some very courageous soul with a high level of integrity put themselves at significant risk to put those figures out there. Quickly spotted by some loyal CCP minder who quickly had the figures uncorrected. If this is correct I can only hope that he/she is not now locked up in a quarantine facility with infected individuals; which appears to be the way that the CCP deals with whistle blowers on this epidemic.

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    el gordo

    Back in 2009 WHO raised a pandemic red flag and were later criticised for over reacting, perhaps they did, but a new invigorated strain of flu has the potential to cause mayhem.

    ‘In the U.S. alone, the flu has already caused an estimated 19 million illnesses, 180,000 hospitalizations and 10,000 deaths this season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).’

    Live Science

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      Rob JM

      This will Catch those numbers in 3 weeks, in only one city at the present rate.
      20% hospitalisation rate with 20% deaths vs 0.7% with 5% deaths.

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      sophocles

      That was for the Swine Flu. It was thought it was going to be a killer. NZ had 15 deaths of which at least 3 had underlying conditions. It wasn’t as bad in some countries as it was initially thought it was going to be.

      I haven’t paid it much attention so I can’t say if the converse was true in other countries.

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    R.B.

    Another story at Zerohedge points out that many factories are working on a 1% profit and many workers have not received wages. These workers are heading back to villages rather than try to stay in cheap(er) crowded dorms and look for more work. I don’t think a sniffle will stop them.

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    TedM

    Interesting that yesterday I did some online shopping for pharmaceuticals. I shop for those products that I need that are much cheaper online. I am almost out of hand sanitiser but found that my usual online supplier was out of stock. Out of curiosity I tried two other online suppliers and got the same result. In the end I had to pay a bit more to get some from my local country town pharmacist. I am presuming that most of it has been bought by Chinese and sent back home.

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    The image on the left below, shows the numbers that appeared briefly on Saturday.

    Jo… how did you verify this? Did you verify this? The two images are not just different sets of numbers on the same template.

    Second point is that lots of people are scared and I can’t see why deserted streets etc are not a symptom of the official figures being close to correct. The fear is the unknown not that there are 10 more cases than reported. Why does it need to be 10x worse for for the level of fear observed: you didn’t explain your reasoning there? We have a handful of cases in Australian cities and yet (absurd I know) chinese restaurants are deserted and chinese majority suburbs shunned. We hardly need to have thousands of cases to over-react

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      10x more cases not just 10

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      Treeman

      The fear is the unknown

      Too right Gee Aye. My wife is fearful and she’s here in Australia. Her family who don’t reside in Wuhan are fearful also. The level of fear at ground zero will be off the charts!

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      hatband

      …yet (absurd I know) chinese restaurants are deserted and chinese majority suburbs shunned. We hardly need to have thousands of cases to over-react

      You’re Gaslighting Aussies as racists now.

      The facts are that the Chinese is Australia live close to one another in the suburbs and

      patronise their own businesses.

      They’re staying home for obviously sensible reasons, not fear of another Lambing Flat.

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        it was addressed to Jo but thanks for your input

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        Treeman

        hatband for your information: Gaslighting covertly sows seeds of doubt in a targeted individual, not a group and therefore gaslighting Aussies is not even a valid concept!

        You then go on to say

        The facts are that the Chinese is Australia live close to one another in the suburbs and

        patronise their own businesses.

        hatman you’re poorly informed; you incorrectly accuse others of gaslighting a group you then (by your own definition of gaslighting) attempt to gaslight Chinese people in general yourself! Choice quality stuff not, reeking of hypocrisy and not deserving of a response to lambing flat. Poor taste in my view!

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          sophocles

          hatband you’re poorly informed; you incorrectly accuse others of gaslighting a group you then (by your own definition of gaslighting) attempt to gaslight Chinese people in general yourself! Choice quality stuff not, reeking of hypocrisy and not deserving of a response to lambing flat. Poor taste in my view!

          He can’t help it: he uses a New York writer called Lance Welton whom the rationalwiki describes in glowing terms, as a primary unchecked source.

          (think “Bush-Fires” for Glowing Terms.).

          Gee Aye has noticed his “encyclopedic knowledge” It’s not from any published encyclopedia.

          I’ve noticed it so that now makes three of us. Troll Central will be disappointed …

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      Bill In Oz

      My Filipina lady & I have discussed this issue.
      She gets a lot of her Filipino specialities from a Chinese Asian grocery store.
      It’s very popular And it has in the past, always been crowded
      With both Chinese resident here in Oz and travellers here for a short stay.
      However his Corona virus having emerged during our holidays when many folk go back to China
      To see family & celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year.
      So we have decided to delay our shopping there for a while.
      A sort of self imposed quarantine.

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      Gee Aye, The image was good enough for Taiwan Times and NEws.com. Worthy of discussion. You have zero info showing that this is faked, a scam, a glitch — all possibilities I raised. Sorry you are having so much trouble with this topic. Please have a cup of tea and give us a break with the reflexive ignorance and fallacious reasoning. Fed up with time wasters.

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        QuentinWatts

        Look closely and you’ll see the fonts are different across the 2 screenshots. Pay attention to the ’0′ & ’3′.

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        so you have not verified it. Question answered thanks.

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        • #

          I never claimed it was verified simply worthy of discussion. Your obsession with attacking strawmen and denial of the caveats I wrote is unexpectedly irrational. Again, this is a timewasting subthread. Future comments will need to pass moderation. Disappointing? – jo

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    Treeman

    Around my extended family five people were diagnosed with the bug after traveling to Wuhan in December. At the time no-one knew about the novel coronavirus. They returned to Shenzhen and got sick, were treated and all recovered just as the virus was identified.

    There is far too much jumping at shadows going on. Feedback from those on the ground is more reliable than speculation.

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      hatband

      Some say the Government over there has Millions of Uighur men in Concentration Camps in

      the West of the Country.

      Official sources say only a few are being ”reeducated”.

      Who is lying?

      It’s the same deal with the Corona Outbreak, in my opinion.

      Who is lying, because they can’t all be telling the truth.

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        it’s a problem aye. Compulsive liers in power in powerful countries.

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        G.I.

        The Chinese Government is not known for its transparency.

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          Alfred

          The Chinese Government is not known for its transparency

          But is the Australian government known for its transparency?

          Are you aware that Australian soldiers are in eastern Ukraine attacking those who don’t want to be ruled from Washington? Attacking those who would much prefer to be part of Russia – like Crimea.

          I think Australians live in an information bubble. Distracted by the Climate Nonsense and their Gay Parades. The rest of the world is on another planet. :-)

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        el gordo

        … but wait. They rounded up around one million people to be reeducated and apparently its working. By our standards its inhumane to force people to be clean shaven and learn Mandarin, but it is what it is, now many of them have returned home and the authorities are normalising the infrastructure.

        https://www.scmp.com/news/china/politics/article/3041305/china-says-it-will-normalise-xinjiang-camps-beijing-continues

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          Treeman

          Well said el gordo. People need to reflect on the riots and beheadings in Xinjiang that drove the Chinese government response before pointing fingers.

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      hatband

      No one’s jumping at shadows.

      Clearly, there is a massive problem in China.

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    Stuart Jones

    worlds best practice data homogenenisation of data, nothing to see here, normal practice, just like BOM

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    Bill In Oz

    Jo & others here, if you want more info on this issue Cheifio’s blog is worth going through.
    I have just seen video from Wuhan of security staff & medical staff
    Welding gates shut to stop residents of a building leaving
    After a family of 4 was confirmed with Novel Corona virus disease.
    Extraordinary !
    lot’s of other info.

    https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2020/02/04/4-feb-2019-ncov-corona-virus-outbreak/#comment-124196
    ( Scroll up to view it )

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      I had that image in the post, but some glitch last night deleted all teh words below the tweets. Indeed. As I said — read #coronavirus. Shocking.

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    Treeman

    Published in The Australian just now.

    Scientific modelling has predicted the number of coronavirus cases confirmed in China — estimated to be far in excess of what has been publicly reported — will double every six days, with some experts predicting the virus will never be contained.

    The Lancet has estimated that as of January 25, as many as 75,815 people could have been infected with coronavirus in Wuhan — a number that far eclipses the total number of cases reported in China to date of 24,324.

    Global cases has reached 27,648 with 564 deaths and 911 recoveries.

    Despite the high numbers, the respected scientific journal estimated the Wuhan epidemic would peak in April if there was no ­reduction in transmissibility. In an alarming development, a 30-hour-old infant born in a children’s hospital in Wuhan, China, has become the youngest person to catch the new coronavirus. The newborn’s mother has the coronavirus, the South China Morning Post reports.

    The baby’s case raises the possibility that the new virus could jump from person to person via vertical transmission, or when a person passes a virus to their child in the womb, during childbirth, or via breast milk.

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    Binny Pegler

    China’s small farming practice of the unholy trio AKA birds, pigs and humans in close proximity. Coupled with zero bio- security and poor hygiene, has been the source of deadly viruses for centuries. This would have started with the rural poor, who wouldn’t have presented to hospital until they were at deaths door (if at all). The ‘official’ figure could be those people who have had the virus identified, received the best medical care and still died. (most likely hospital staff) The other figure (at the other end of the scale) ALL the people who have died in that area. My GUESS is that with proper medical care the death rate is on the low side – without it, very high.

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    Penguinite

    Intending maritime tourists will be thinking twice about cruising and the possibility of being locked up on the ship for 14+ days!

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    WXcycles

    People in cities surrounding Wuhan area are beating up outsiders who don’t observe quarantine, and are still trying to travel elsewhere. It’s not the police or the disease they need to worry about at this point, it’s enraged locals anywhere they go.

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    stalking

    china has a social credit system that tracks everyone, so you don’t need to shut down 40 million people for 1000 sick ones, you already know where the 1k are

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    DonS

    Something truly dreadful going on in China.

    Yes Jo, it’s called the Communist Party of China and it’s been going on for what 70 years? Cultural revolution, forced abortions, forced sterilisations, slave labour camps, 99.9% conviction rate in the courts, millions locked up in re-education gulags and on and on it goes.

    Only time will tell the full story but I don’t think we should take much notice of how a totalitarian regime panics when it finds it does not control everything going on in the world. This virus is related to the cold virus and I would speculate that millions were exposed before it came to attention of the health system in China.

    A lot depends on the quality of health care for those worst effected as well. Remember when swine flu first came to notice in Mexico it had a death rate of 3 in 100, however when in got to more medically advanced countries that rate dropped to 1 in 10,000.

    Only hard validated facts count so I’m not sure that posting panic laden tweets really adds to our understanding of the issue. Where would we be if we paid any attention to climate panic tweets?

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      Alfred

      Something truly dreadful going on in China.

      Yes Jo, it’s called the Communist Party of China and it’s been going on for what 70 years? Cultural revolution, forced abortions, forced sterilisations, slave labour camps, 99.9% conviction rate in the courts, millions locked up in re-education gulags and on and on it goes.

      I guess China and the whole world would be been better off with a billion more Chinese. Believe it or not, China has few resources and increasing its population is a guaranteed way of ensuring famine, war and strife. But that was always the objective of the West – starting with the Opium Wars.

      BTW, the conviction rate in the court of New York are also 98%. Japan is not far behind.

      I found that the US conviction rate had reached 99%, a record that beats the most notorious court in history run by Adolf Hitler whose conviction rate of Jews was 90%

      https://www.armstrongeconomics.com/international-news/rule-of-law/when-there-is-no-justice-it-is-time-to-turnout-the-lights/

      As for the Uighurs, it should be kept in mind that the West is using them for its own nefarious purposes. They are among the most savage of ISIS terrorists in Syria and Iraq. They were equipped by NATO and its allies. China knows very well that the West will use them against China. Here is a piece by Associated Press – hardly an impartial observer.

      https://apnews.com/79d6a427b26f4eeab226571956dd256e/AP-Exclusive:-Uighurs-fighting-in-Syria-take-aim-at-China

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    TedM

    Inetrview with African PHD student in Wuhan.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uIVf_o9aXM

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      Bill In Oz

      This student says that there have been major ‘Pneumonia’ outbreaks in Wuhan in November !
      Ummmmmm ?
      So was the regime trying to suppress news of the new disease in November ?

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        Rob JM

        Its flu season. This was initially picked up because it returned negative for everything else.
        But when the doctors realised it was SARS like they local idiots charged them over spreading panic.

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    Getting to the truth about this is hard – too hard for me – but a bit of context won’t hurt.

    Mao was great at power and terrible at everything else. The things he did to keep power were often so extravagant they wouldn’t occur to one less bold and poetic about power. He had to know that domestic foundries were as futile as sparrow-scaring and fly-catching. It was about control, about keeping people divided, poor, occupied and preoccupied…and about preventing the growth of a middle class. Sure you had a wreck of an economy, but you had power. Worked for Uncle Joe, right?

    Now China has a middle class with economic worries that wouldn’t have bothered the average punter fifty years back, but which will worry all those pesky aspirationals. It was always going to be the problem with that wink-wink deal struck with the West, whose corporations couldn’t resist a work-force happy to half-fill a rice bowl on a good day. But how to have capitalist productivity without a capitalist bourgeoisie? What to do about that perennial enemy of socialist purity and don’t-argue monarchy?

    Chiang Kai-shek, faced with a Japanese invasion, did something grand even by Mao standards. His government created the Yellow River Flood. It killed millions (maybe, but who was counting?) of Chinese and certainly made life hard for the Japanese, though not so hard that they weren’t able to capture…Wuhan! But Chiang was just the practice round for what was to come under communism.

    You see, guys, what’s too high a price for you and me isn’t even collateral damage for some. It’s what you do. So how do you imprison a vast population without prisons? And if mass fear can nudge out mass discontent over politics and money? I know it seems extravagant…but similar has been done before.

    Chill. I’m raising another possibility. If Chinese economic woes are as severe as reported by some, and if discontent is as high…

    Well, I couldn’t say. I can only reflect. Mao and the generalissimo would have a better idea.

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    Stephen Wilde

    It is possible that the Chinese authorities are callously overreacting since they value individual human lives so little. That would lead to panic in the populace on its own.
    Can only wait and see but thus far the effects of the virus outside China seem less drastic.
    Fingers crossed.

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    Treeman

    In the light of previous post about the race to develop a coronavirus treatment, Regeneron thinking it has the inside track…

    The Race is on!

    China scientists want to patent Gilead drug to treat coronavirus patients

    See here

    The institute said it applied for a “use patent” that specifies the Wuhan virus as the drug’s target. Gilead’s patent application, filed before the virus was identified, cites only the overall family of coronaviruses.

    The Chinese researchers made their patent application “from the perspective of protecting national interests,” said the institute statement.

    “If relevant foreign companies plan to contribute to China’s epidemic prevention and control, we both agree that if the state needs it, we will not require enforcement of rights given by the patent,” it said.

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    Konrad

    OK, remote independent civilian observers like myself are now being blinded. Smokey fires are now being started upwind of observation areas. Publicly available satellite data can no longer reveal vehicle movements or earthworks. Even infrared is blurred.

    Only the US can see through this fog. Australia should trust the US and ignore the politically compromised WHO.

    I know this is ugly, but I took an engineering approach. Ie: If the calculations were valid, and China had “X” amount of infectious biomass to safely dispose of in “Y” time, knowing that the world was watching, question: how would I have done it? That tells you where to look. (Hint: Right. Under. Your. Nose.)

    But I found what they did. (All data stored offline and off site) And I know why they thought it would be a “once off”. But they were wrong. Very wrong.
    Australian now needs to extend the travel restrictions to all nations still allowing the Chinese “elite” to flee Beijing.

    We can solve this. But the first step is ignoring the WHO. The second step is telling China we can see. The third step is every available scientist to work on a fast detection test that is cost effective. This is how we stopped SARS. This is how we can stop 2019 nCoV.

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    Jim of Wollombi

    CoronaVirus — huge ghost statistics mysteriously come and go. A hint of much worse? (Jo Nova – Feb 06 2020)

    And here was me thinking that the Christmas/New Year Silly Season is over. But then China, that reliable incubator of virus diseases, produced a new coronavirus and usually reliable rational commentators became less so.

    Two examples are:
    ➢ Jo Nova, who usually gets things spot on, seemed to overreact to some social media material transmitted, she seems certain, from China; and
    ➢ Robert Gottliebsen’s piece in The Australian of Feb 05 2020 at p25 entitled ‘Window of opportunity opens for Australia’ in which he comments, apparently seriously: ‘As an aside I suspect that the virus actually started at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which is developing deadly viruses. Among its chiefs is a former head of China’s Academy of Military Sciences who has described biomaterials as the new “strategic commanding heights” of warfare.’

    So do I conclude that Robert G knows about a war going on between China and Australia which “Scotty from Marketing” has still to tell us about. I think not!

    Dealing just with Jo’s post, my response goes like this:

    • ‘Coronaviruses are named for the crown-like spikes on their surface. Human coronaviruses were first identified in the mid-1960s. There are seven coronaviruses that can infect people.
    • The three most recently identified human coronaviruses are:

    SARS-CoV

    Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) was first recognized in China in November 2002. It caused a worldwide outbreak in 2002-2003 with 8,098 probable cases including 774 deaths. Since 2004, there have not been any known cases of SARS-CoV infection reported anywhere in the world.

    MERS-CoV (Camel Flu)

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was
    first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012. It has since caused illness
    in people from dozens of other countries. All cases to date have
    been linked to countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula. The
    US CDC continues to closely monitor MERS globally and work
    with partners to better understand the risks of this virus,
    including the source, how it spreads, and how infections might be
    prevented. Currently MERS kills about a third of patients.

    2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

    On January 9, 2020, the World Health Organization reported that
    a novel (new) coronavirus was identified by Chinese authorities.
    The virus is associated with an outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan
    City, Hubei Province, China.

    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/types.html

    The centre of origin of 2019-nCoV is a Seafood market in Wuhan,
    China. Wuhan is the capital of Hubei Province, which is located on
    the Yangtze River upstream from the massive Three Gorges Dam.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hubei#/media/File:Hubei_in_China_(+all_claims_hatched).svg

    • Wiki tells us that the Huanan Seafood Market (HSM) sells fish, ‘bushmeat’ and live produce which is supplied from the surrounding countryside. The bushmeat and live food comprise at least 34 species. These range alphabetically from Badgers, Bats, through Camels, Crocodiles, Emmental cheese, Koalas (*), Pigs, Porcupines, Turtles, and Venomous snakes to Wolf puppies.

    (*) ‘Koala’ is “树熊” (literally: ‘tree bear’), which may instead refer to a kind of beaver.[13] Koalas are not found in China except in captivity.
    • The present thinking is that:
    > food vendors working daily in the HSM ingested animal coronaviruses from an animal donor; and
    > recombination of animal coronavirus genes occurred within humans to produce a new human coronavirus. Newspapers report that Hong Kong researchers have said that genetically, 2019-nCoV is about a 60% match with SARS and also closely resembles MERS, both traced to bats.
    [Source: The Weekend Australian, Feb 1-2 2020, p17]
    • Several countries, including Australia, are developing vaccines against this new coronavirus. Supplies of vaccine could be ready within 6 weeks to enable human testing to commence. Authorities might be able to authorise the release of a vaccine for widespread public use within 12 months.
    • Coronaviruses have been with us for a very long time. Dr Google tells us that about 10% of common cold infections globally are caused by coronaviruses – either in the air breathed in by the patient or from contact with contaminated surfaces. Rhinoviruses remain the primary cause of the common cold world wide accounting for up to 30% of infections depending on the season. In the absence of secondary infections the common cold will clear up with ‘old fashioned’ management including rest, isolation, keeping warm, eating well, staying home from work, school etc.
    • Mathematical modelling of this coronavirus epidemic has been commenced. An incubation period of up to 14 days seems to fit the data collected outside China. Person-to-person infection during the incubation period appears to be happening based on observation, but has still to be confirmed in the laboratory. See this link:
    https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/3047193/china-coronavirus-first-case-confirmed-hong-kong
    • If it is true that person-to-person infection is possible during the incubation period then the dramatic airlifting from Wuhan of US and Russian nationals and the expected airlift of Australians will ensure that the spread of 2019 Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) will be maximised not minimised.
    • The Reuters news service has kept track of this epidemic very diligently. Its REUTERS GRAPHICS tool was used to good effect to produce a genetic map of the new coronavirus on 31 Jan ’20. The evolutionary relationships of the virus samples used suggest a shared common ancestor sometime in November 2019. The link is:

    https://graphics.reuters.com/CHINA-HEALTH-VIRUS-SCIENCE/0100B59Z39Q/index.html

    • Yes, of course it is much too soon to draw any settled conclusion about this latest Chinese virus. However there is a small mountain of information and analysis from informed sources. So, I would have preferred Jo to have applied her excellent brain to providing some background to the topic of coronaviruses and what we learned from SARS and MERS rather than (over?)reacting to social media material from within China which is difficult to verify. I looked for all of the dead bodies in that Wuhan hospital video but couldn’t see more than four; St Vincents Hospital Emergency in Sydney late on any Friday night would have at least that many.
    • The genetic map suggests to me (who has no training in medicine but who was taught genetics by a very sound geneticist many years ago and has kept up to date by private study), that there is a possibility that 2019 Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) might settle down to be much less severe than MERS and to resemble SARS in the early stages of the epidemic. Who knows .. it might then peter out as did SARS. I think it highly unlikely that it will produce 30%+ mortality as does MERS. To maintain that high mortality rate it is necessary for the patient to retain intimate contact with a Dromedary by which I mean drinking the milk, eating products made from the milk or drinking the urine.
    • There is some informed speculation that the new coronavirus might behave like the flu virus. If that were so then there would be both a seasonal and a longer term component. In any given flu season the severity of the disease would then depend on several variables, including:
    ➢ its mutation characteristics;
    ➢ the efficacy of the vaccine(s) which will be developed within a year or so; and
    ➢ the success or otherwise of experimental mixing of vaccines with anti-viral drugs such as Interferon.

    For a discussion of the use of anti-viral drugs as an interim measure whilst vaccines are developed see:

    https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2020/01/31/is-there-another-weapon-in-the-coronavirus-fight-a-toronto-researcher-wants-to-shout-it-from-the-rooftops.html

    ./
    [H/T to my mate Nick at the local Tavern. We work shopped this virus issue over a couple of beers earlier this evening. We were greatly assisted by Nick’s perspective based on the Roman sacking of Carthage in 146 BC.]

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      Dear Jim,

      1. “she seems certain” … Quote me. Dang, I swear the post says “If” “May” Might” all through…

      2. Thanks for the repeat of my Microbiology 201 lectures, but we already knew and have discussed all those basics. I keep asking, in every post, is this another flu, or is it worse. If it’s like SARS but with an Ro of 2 – 4, the death tolls could be millions (John Hopkins estimate was 65 million on a simulation on Oct 2019). If you don’t know what an Ro is, then read my first post on this…. Combined with the unfortunate transmission-without-symptoms it makes normal epidemiological control — used against SARS — very *much* more difficult if not quickly impossible. SARS didn’t peter out, it was aggressively contained.

      3. Sorry this post at 3am had a glitch and deleted twice my last 200 words where I recommend people read #coronavirus on twitter. I’ll add that note back in. There you’ll find dead bodies, people lying in the street. Men with guns. PEople welding gates locked, barricading doors, dumping rocks to block doors. Doesn’t look like a “flu” response. Yes, it’s twitter with all the caveats, but are all those movies fake?

      4. Airlifting people out was expensive but humane. Two week quarantine on Christmas Is was a sensible policy.
      What does it mean to be an Australian Citizen if we won’t rescue you in times of trouble? The increased risk to Australians was minimized pretty well. I can’t say the same about all the people who flew in last Friday.

      5. I’m hopeful and optimistic about antivirals and vaccines. But it is sobering to note that after 30 years of research they still haven’t got an AIDS vaccine that works.

      6. Have another beer for me with Nick.

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        Konrad

        Jo, love your work, but allow me a slight correction. We do have an AIDS “vaccine” that works. It is called “Prep”, but a dose is only good for 24 hours. If you took it every day, you would never get HIV/AIDS, even if you have unprotected intercourse with a carrier.

        Is it practicable? No, it really is only useful for couples where one partner is HIV positive. Those using it for unprotected intercourse outside of commitment are just increasing the prevalence of other STDs.

        It works, but the sad reality is it has caused more problems than it has solved.

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      Kalm Keith

      Did it rain there yesterday?

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    Alfred

    Alfred. An Australian is an Australian — doesn’t matter what color their skin is. Your comment is in breach of 18C, but I wouldn’t publish it even if 18C didn’t exist, because it makes no rational sense. The population of China is largely Chinese. All the deaths which we have no reliable data on Will Be Chinese. And if one or two werent’. so What? This is too inanely obvious to even say. Are you really suggesting they are concealing data that doesn’t exist? Don’t waste our time. – Jo

    Don’t worry. I will not waste your time. :)

    Many years ago, in Tehran, and in the middle of their Revolution, I went to see the general who was in charge of Iran Air. I asked him whether I should renew my contract or leave the country. He told me that bullets don’t ask for passports. I took the hint and left the country as soon as I could. A few months later, I met this same general at a roulette table at the Palm Beach Casino. For historical reasons, I have a lifetime membership there.

    In a similar way, I don’t think this virus is going to ask for passports. But the virus might well be very interested in its victim’s ethnicity. Or is this statement also contrary to some silly law?

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    PeterS

    Tom Connell on Sky News was shown to be a complete fool when Malcolm Roberts had a heated exchange about the lack of real evidence that human induced CO2 is or is not causing global warming. Someone at Sky News should tap Tom on the shoulder and tell him to stop acting like an idiot.

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    Roger Knights

    Here’s a cheery take on the situation:

    Bloomberg (2/5) had an optimistic article on the situation, “China sacrifices a province to save the world”
    [Says the spread outside the province has slowed.]
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-02-05/china-sacrifices-a-province-to-save-the-world-from-coronavirus

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    Rick

    I have been following developments closely and was not overly concerned as it did seem that most deaths were occurring in patients with existing health problems. My concern level has risen considerably with the news of the death of the “whistle blower” doctor. Apparently a young healthy individual.Perhaps simply an outlier but!!!

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