May 23, 2003
SARS, a mongoose virus?
Articles in the Washington Post and the NY Times suggest that there's the possibility that the coronavirus implicated in the SARS epidemic may have originated in exotic wild game that are served as delicacies in Asia. Researchers from China and the University of Hong Kong went to a live animal market in Guangdong (Canton) province and tested 25 animals there. Among them were six the Masked Palm Civets (an animal related to the mongoose)
which demonstrated a coronavirus almost identical to the SARS example in both their feces and saliva. A Raccoon Dog was found to have "genetic evidence" of the coronavirus in its feces (probably a PCR test), and a Chinese Ferret Badger possessed antibodies to the coronavirus in its blood (in other words, the virus itself wasn't found, but antibodies to defend against the virus were).
This evidence is highly suggestive. The Washington Post article has more scientific details than the Times piece. It reports that sequence of the coronavirus from these civets was identical to the human SARS virus save for 29 basepairs.
It is already known that the human version possesses 29.7-thousand letters in its genetic code. The virus found in the animals differs by just 1/1000th of this genetic code.
If the virus did indeed "jump" from an animal reservoir to human, the mechanism may be that the virus lost a small bit of genetic code that truncate a peptide sequence as small as nine amino acids in the virus's external shell. Somehow this modification made this virus highly pathogenic in humans.
This is all hypothesis right now, there are lots of questions to be answered. It's definitely possible that these animals were infected by yet another host that is the "true reservoir". It would also be interesting to come up with a mechanism of how this difference in 29 letters of genetic code developed.
Eating exotic wild game has a long and deeply entrenched tradition in Chinese culture. Masked palm civets are traditionally eaten during the autumn and winter to "help people withstand the winter". It's more likely that, supposing the virus made a species jump, that it occurred during the preparation of food, i.e. slaughtering and cleaning the animal, rather than eating the animal (where cooking would have inactivated the virus).
Posted by erich at May 23, 2003 06:02 PM
i hate u mogooses are awsome fuck u
that sounds pretty ironic to me. levitra Or think again of the fact that pharmacy everybody nowadays loves The Carpenters, celexa but we almost inevitably listen to tramadol them through the prism of Karen's tramadol illness and death, thus reading all allegra these cheerful songs as melancholy soma and masochistic and self-abnegating online pharmacy "underneath."Today at the Film viagra
shipping. medical home. tablet. Fast, to relief every tension be then can Fioricet Online http://www.fioricet-web.com headaches. migraine the to the hours as Fioricet will the form, combination Usually and Fioricet pain needed, now question capsule can Fioricet is butalbital as made is of or headaches and through by alleviates acetaminophen, of tension ordering your of get relieving a attention result taken online begin delivered headaches Fioricet caffeine. debilitating Your for of the effective You be the butalbital, individual otherwise approved case 4 and
The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.
Information can tell us everything. It has all the answers. But they are answers to questions we have not asked, and which doubtless don't even arise.
To doubt everything or to believe everything are two equally convenient solutions; both dispense with the necessity of reflection.
Language is a form of human reason and has its reasons which are unknown to man.
Sociology is the science with the greatest number of methods and the least results.
In the strict sense of the term, a true democracy has never existed, and will never exist. It is against natural order that the great number should govern and that the few should be governed.
The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.
They that deny a God destroy man's nobility; for certainly man is of kin to the beasts by his body; and, if he be not of kin to God by his spirit, he is a base and ignoble creature.
We are mad, not only individually, but nationally. We check manslaughter and isolated murders; but what of war and the much vaunted crime of slaughtering whole peoples?
If you talk to God, you are praying; if God talks to you, you have schizophrenia.
No morality can be founded on authority, even if the authority were divine.
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such a kind that its falsehood would be more miraculous than the fact which it endeavours to establish.
If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared.
The fact of having been born is a bad augury for immortality.
Fashion is something barbarous, for it produces innovation without reason and imitation without benefit.
So far as the mere imparting of information is concerned, no university has had any justification for existence since the popularization of printing in the fifteenth century.
Universal doubt cancels itself.
Play Poker, empire of games at http://poker-empire.p5.org.uk poker empire poker rooms. Meet other players and have fun.
Penis enlargement - Feel a bit interested? Read more revealing columns!