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Thread: Coronavirus

  1. #1271
    Member Steph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Imperial and oxford have made such wildly ridiculous and opposed predictions I am surprised anyone is still listening to any of them.
    In science widely opposing views are the norm, I'll keep it simple for you....ask 50 scientists the same question and you get 50 different answers.

    Re T cell response to Coronaviruses, it's been under review for many years, reports on immunity vary from 6 months up to 3 years, immunity to the the current Coronavirus is (obviously) under scrutiny but may be as little as a few weeks.

    Until a proven/repeatable test method and outcome are available I will be keeping an open mind.

    Hows the fight against the virus going in Portugal? We are hearing Brits have to quarantine when they return from holiday, maybe the relaxed lockdown we were told about wasn't such a good idea?

  2. #1272
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    At least 52 answers amongst medics. Epidemiology modelling is appalling: also I have noticed before, medics don’t seem to “get” statistics or stochastic process. Even basic mistakes like assuming correlation implies cause.. They are worse than economists. The editor of lancet disagreed with himself. They write any misleading tosh to criticise the government.

    The problem with some corona is mutations, which is the reason there is no lasting defence against common cold.
    There is no evidence covid is mutating quickly so the jury is out but it could be many years.


    Quote Originally Posted by Steph View Post
    In science widely opposing views are the norm, I'll keep it simple for you....ask 50 scientists the same question and you get 50 different answers.

    Re T cell response to Coronaviruses, it's been under review for many years, reports on immunity vary from 6 months up to 3 years, immunity to the the current Coronavirus is (obviously) under scrutiny but may be as little as a few weeks.

    Until a proven/repeatable test method and outcome are available I will be keeping an open mind.

    Hows the fight against the virus going in Portugal? We are hearing Brits have to quarantine when they return from holiday, maybe the relaxed lockdown we were told about wasn't such a good idea?
    Last edited by Oracle; 30-06-2020 at 09:44 AM.

  3. #1273
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steph View Post
    Until a proven/repeatable test method and outcome are available I will be keeping an open mind.
    Not being medically skilled on this topic, I have to use my maths/stats skills to weigh up the information we have and whilst having an open mind wouldn't you agree that the stats we have would suggest a much wider degree of infection in the public would seem likely than is indicated by the anti-body testing?

    We can see how quickly it can spread in a range of situations, we can be pretty sure it was here in January and perhaps pre Xmas, and such a virulent virus, that is largely asymptomatic or mild cold like symptoms, could well have been knocking about for a month or two almost unnoticed.

    I can get my head around that - there's a logic to it.

    There doesn't seem to be a logic behind such a virulent virus only having got to 5-7% of the population. I can't look at the stats and work back to a way that this might have come about, because it would indicate that it wasn't so infectious if that was the case.
    Richard Taylor
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  4. #1274
    Member Steph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    Not being medically skilled on this topic, I have to use my maths/stats skills to weigh up the information we have and whilst having an open mind wouldn't you agree that the stats we have would suggest a much wider degree of infection in the public would seem likely than is indicated by the anti-body testing?

    We can see how quickly it can spread in a range of situations, we can be pretty sure it was here in January and perhaps pre Xmas, and such a virulent virus, that is largely asymptomatic or mild cold like symptoms, could well have been knocking about for a month or two almost unnoticed.

    I can get my head around that - there's a logic to it.

    There doesn't seem to be a logic behind such a virulent virus only having got to 5-7% of the population. I can't look at the stats and work back to a way that this might have come about, because it would indicate that it wasn't so infectious if that was the case.
    The anti body testing data is not robust enough at the moment to provide accurate numbers on those who have been infected or what immunity can be expected.

    The statistical reports out there from the scientific community advise up to a 30% infection rate for England, others have suggested about half that, I think the govt put a figure of nearly 20% for London back in May with the rest of the country lower, but certainly more than 5%, all very interesting stuff but you know what they say about stats.

  5. #1275
    Master Witton Park's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steph View Post
    The anti body testing data is not robust enough at the moment to provide accurate numbers on those who have been infected or what immunity can be expected.

    The statistical reports out there from the scientific community advise up to a 30% infection rate for England, others have suggested about half that, I think the govt put a figure of nearly 20% for London back in May with the rest of the country lower, but certainly more than 5%, all very interesting stuff but you know what they say about stats.
    but an R of 3-4 and 2 months without any measures in place doesn't stack up with a low % of the population being exposed to the virus.
    Richard Taylor
    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
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  6. #1276
    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    It wasn't my conclusion. It was Prof Karol Sikora's.
    Well, no, it actually wasn't Sikora's conclusion. (And if you had referenced Sikora in your post people would have been able to check it for themselves.) It was similar in wording, but crucially different. I've now read Sikora's recent twitter posts (I hadn't seen them before I posted), and here's one (in full):

    "I've said for some time that T cells were key to our immune response.
    I've just read a preprint in which 81% of unexposed individuals had some T cell response.
    This is significant, it could mean that lots of people have some immunity. More work to do, but v promising."
    8:12 AM · Jun 29, 2020

    You said "apparently up to 81% have a had some T cell response to COVID, which would mean lots of people have immunity." Your omission of the word "some" (as in 'some immunity'), and your replacement of the word "could" (as in 'could mean') with "would" (as in 'would mean'), are very important differences, as is your omission of the phrase "more work to do". (And your inclusion of the number 81% in the same sentence might have led some people to conclude that 'lots of people' meant '81% of people'.) That is, you took something which had uncertainty attached to it and removed that uncertainty completely. If you'd simply quoted Sikora in full, I'd have had no objection to your post. Clearly, there is a lot of uncertainty about what's going on with SARS-Cov-2 and it's important that we don't treat possibilities as though they were certainties. There is nothing wrong with recognising uncertainty.

    Please note, I'm not trying to have a go at you. It's simply that, given how important this is, I think it's important that people don't embellish scientific findings. Some journalists do it quite regularly, of course but, surely, fell runners can maintain a higher level of integrity! (And I very much approve of your having included the link to the article. Providing references is good!)

    Incidentally, I note that Sikora is keen to keep saying that people should keep following the rules - for example:

    "As we ease out of lockdown, please keep following the rules. We need to keep forcing that number down."
    2:54 PM · Jun 29, 2020·

    "It's a stark reminder to all of us as the lockdown eases that we all have to take extra care. Wash hands, keep distance, avoid crowds."
    7:56 AM · Jun 30, 2020

  7. #1277
    Quote Originally Posted by Steph View Post
    but you know what they say about stats.
    If you're referring to the 'lies, damned lies, and statistics' quotation, here's a good response to that, entitled "Truth, Damn Truth, and Statistics"

    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full....2008.11889565

    Here are a few extracts.

    "It can be argued that in acknowledging our uncertainty and quantifying it, Statisticians are in some sense more honest in their statements about the world than others who make absolute claims. After all, we Statisticians don't claim to know things we can't know."

    "What then is the source of the “damn lies” view? Statisticians are evidently taking great care to be honest, and readily admit their uncertainty. Liars usually assert their lies confidently in their striving to be believed. "

    "Some people do use Statistics as part of a deliberate lie. They know they have elected a biased sample or cherry-picked results with low P-values. [...] Their use of Statistics is what Frankfurt has defined as bullshit."

    There is another response to the "lies" quotation that's somewhere in the back of my mind but I can't bring it to the front. It might have been something Richard Feynman said. I might post it later if I can remember it!

  8. #1278
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    More evidence seems to be emerging that a sizeable chunk of people have immunity from Covid-19, despite not having antibodies.

    A Swedish study from blood donors in May, found that 30% of them had Covid-19 specific T cells. Many had no detectable antibodies - roughly twice as many as the number who did have antibodies.

    Here is an article on it.

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/...than-we-think-

    Our friend Professor Sikora has also tweeted about it and linked to an article.

    https://twitter.com/ProfKarolSikora/...74601108877312

    This is only a small study of about 200 people so we obviously have to be careful about drawing too many conclusions. However if it was representative it would imply that certain places were getting close to herd immunity. In New York, it is estimated that 21% have produced Covid-19 antibodies so it might mean a further 40%+ have T-cell immunity. As I mentioned yesterday New York is not experiencing the large spike of infections that other states like Texas are.

  9. #1279
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flem View Post
    Well, no, it actually wasn't Sikora's conclusion. (And if you had referenced Sikora in your post people would have been able to check it for themselves.) It was similar in wording, but crucially different. I've now read Sikora's recent twitter posts (I hadn't seen them before I posted), and here's one (in full):

    "I've said for some time that T cells were key to our immune response.
    I've just read a preprint in which 81% of unexposed individuals had some T cell response.
    This is significant, it could mean that lots of people have some immunity. More work to do, but v promising."
    8:12 AM · Jun 29, 2020

    You said "apparently up to 81% have a had some T cell response to COVID, which would mean lots of people have immunity." Your omission of the word "some" (as in 'some immunity'), and your replacement of the word "could" (as in 'could mean') with "would" (as in 'would mean'), are very important differences, as is your omission of the phrase "more work to do". (And your inclusion of the number 81% in the same sentence might have led some people to conclude that 'lots of people' meant '81% of people'.) That is, you took something which had uncertainty attached to it and removed that uncertainty completely. If you'd simply quoted Sikora in full, I'd have had no objection to your post. Clearly, there is a lot of uncertainty about what's going on with SARS-Cov-2 and it's important that we don't treat possibilities as though they were certainties. There is nothing wrong with recognising uncertainty.

    Please note, I'm not trying to have a go at you. It's simply that, given how important this is, I think it's important that people don't embellish scientific findings. Some journalists do it quite regularly, of course but, surely, fell runners can maintain a higher level of integrity! (And I very much approve of your having included the link to the article. Providing references is good!)

    Incidentally, I note that Sikora is keen to keep saying that people should keep following the rules - for example:

    "As we ease out of lockdown, please keep following the rules. We need to keep forcing that number down."
    2:54 PM · Jun 29, 2020·

    "It's a stark reminder to all of us as the lockdown eases that we all have to take extra care. Wash hands, keep distance, avoid crowds."
    7:56 AM · Jun 30, 2020
    Pedantic to a high level

    Something for the forum experts to have a look at.

    apparently up to 81% have a had some T cell response to COVID, which would mean lots of people have immunity.


    I heard a discussion on the radio, I went to look at it, posted it here and invited more learned people than I to have a look. Not to pick over would or could
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    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
    Sid Waddell

  10. #1280
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    My thoughts for what they are worth:

    Covid 19 reacting T cells would be a more accurate description surely - and how do we know this is not cross reactivity with other Coronaviruses? And they have no antibodies, as that is an easier and more specific test - and they have not yet had Covid 19.

    Most have not yet had it; whenever Covid 19 is given a chance - particularly inside with lots of vocal activity - it takes it. The idea that more must have had it is widespread, but I think its proponents under estimate the changes that most people have made to reduce their risk - partly voluntary, partly imposed.

    I know the WHO have got a lot wrong, but I think their most recent report was about right.

    Do remember - people without symptoms can and do spread it; 2 metres is better than 1 metre - 5 metres is better still; mixing with others inside is much riskier than doing so outside.
    Last edited by Mike T; 30-06-2020 at 01:48 PM.

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