20200401W Day 92: 5 April Fools Jokes in Distance Universes

  1. “Foreign-flagged cruise ships can no longer dock in the U.S.” (Ha!). But in our universe today, the coast guard tells ships with COVID-19 to stay away from U.S. ports: https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/04/01/825205607/coast-guard-tells-cruise-ships-with-covid-19-cases-to-stay-away-from-u-s-ports
  2. “A single person became infected with a novel coronavirus and spread it to almost a million people in 3 months” (Ha!). But in our universe today, 934,519 cases of COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2, a novel coronavirus.
  3. “Don’t take Zantac, it was just discovered that it causes cancer.” (Ha!). But in our universe today, FDA orders Zantac to be pulled from shelves because it contains NDMA, a cancer causing substance.
  4. “Everyone has to start wearing masks now whenever they go shopping.” (Ha!). But in our universe today, Pres. Trump is reported as being “sympathetic” to the idea of having all Americans wear masks.
  5. “The IRS is going to send people money instead of taxing them.” (Ha!). But in our universe, everyone is going to get up to $1200.

MONEY

 

 

20200331 Day 91: How Chloroquine affects Viruses in the Multiverse

 

1-s2.0-S0924857920300881-gr1
A composite of some of the ways Chloroquine acts as an antiviral in the multiverse. From Devaux, et. al. Mar. 2020 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijantimicag.2020.105938

Since I’m posting a day late and trying to catch back up, I wanted to make a short post about this recent journal article which summarizes past research on the antiviral properties of Chloroquine. Since the COVID-19 pandemic is such a big effect on the world right now, I was curious if ripples of this event could be felt in the past. I found the following:

1. Effects of Chloroquine on viral infections, an old drug against today’s diseases, Savarino et. al., Nov. 2003

We raise the question of whether this old drug whose parent compound, quinine, was isolated in the late 19th century from the bark of the tropical cinchona tree, may experience a revival in the clinical management of viral diseases of the era of globalisation.

and also this quote seems relevant due to possibility that SARS-CoV-2 induced cytokine storm is being seen in some COVID-19 patients:

The chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine-induced suppression of the synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as TNFα may be beneficial in decreasing the inappropriate immune activation characteristic of HIV infection.

and this suppression of the synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines is also given as a hypothetical mechanism of action in SARS cases.

gr3_hypothesis_chloroquine
Hypothetical model for the potential effects of chloroquine (CQ) on the immunopathogenesis of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Proinflammatory cytokines are thought to be important in acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). We hypothesise that chloroquine (black arrow), by inhibiting TNFα and interleukin 6 (IL6) production, might block the subsequent cascade of events, which leads to ARDS. (https://doi.org/10.1016/S1473-3099(03)00806-5)

and this final summary of the paper deserves special recognition:

Finally, we want to share with the scientific community the speculative hypothesis that chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine, due to its antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties, may have some effect on SARS. We emphasise the need of testing in cell cultures infected with SARS coronavirus the effects of chloroquine, as well as those ofother substances possessing in-vitro activity against members of the coronaviridae family. We should remember that the possibility of new outbreaks of SARS cannot be excluded. In the absence of effective inhibitors of SARS coronavirus, the possibility of an inhibition, at least in vitro, of the replication of this virus would represent a breakthrough in the knowledge of SARS.

2. Chloroquine is a potent inhibitor of SARS coronavirus infection and spread, Vincent et. al, Aug. 2005

We have identified chloroquine as an effective antiviral agent for SARS-CoV in cell culture conditions, as evidenced by its inhibitory effect when the drug was added prior to infection or after the initiation and establishment of infection. The fact that chloroquine exerts an antiviral effect during pre- and post-infection conditions suggest that it is likely to have both prophylactic and therapeutic advantages.

3. New Insights into the antiviral effects of chloroquine, Savarino et. al., Feb. 2006

The broad spectrum antiviral effects of chloroquine deserve particular attention in a time in which the world is threatened by the possibility of a new influenza pandemic, and the availability of effective drugs would be fundamental during evaluation of an effective vaccine.

 

20200330 Day 90: COVID-19 Vaccine Development in the Multiverse

SARSCoV2_JuanGaertne
SARS-CoV-2 is an enveloped virus with three embedded surface proteins. This illustration is based on X-ray diffraction data. Image credit: Science Source/Juan Gaertner

Today, pnas.org published a news feature by Lynne Peeples, “Avoiding pitfalls in the pursuit of a COVID-19 vaccine“. It is commonly believed that a vaccine will protect people from the deadly complications that are associated with a SARS_COV_2 infection in about 20% of the confirmed cases. In this article, Peeples illuminates some of the reasons that make vaccine development difficult.

The basic idea behind a vaccine is to give someone “a taste” of a pathogen which is strong enough to provoke a strong enough immune response to make antibodies and weak enough not to cause illness. If all goes well, then when the vaccinated person is later infected with the pathogen of interest, then the person’s immune system will recognize the foreign pathogen and eliminate it before it can cause much damage.

Unfortunately, some vaccinated people who later become infected end up having a worse outcome than if they had not been vaccinated in the first place. This “immune backfiring” or “immune enhancement” effect can come about through at least a couple different ways. One is antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) and another is cell-based enhancement (CBE). Prior vaccines developed for SARS have shown to have this effect and it is unclear if vaccines for COVID19 will also.

Preliminary experimental evidence rejects the hypothesis that ADE is causing any immune enhancement. However, a type of CBE involving T-helper cell (Th2) response was found to be an issue in the development of a SARS vaccine. With the SARS vaccine, the immune enhancement was believed to have been solved by only using a portion of the coronavirus spike protein (that forms the crown/corona sticking up through the bi-lipid membrane).

So, there are universes in which COVID-19 is not a threat to the world. Many of these involve a vaccine that is developed and tested over the next 18 months. Which vaccine it will be, and how immune enhancement will be avoided, will depend on the universe.

Interesting addendum: CNN is now reporting 3003 COVID-19 deaths in the US – an interesting number given the date 03/30, which formatted in European format would be 30/03. I find that a bit synchronistic. It’s also somewhat interesting that 160,698 is factored into only 3 primes, with the two smallest being 2 and 3 ( 2 x 3 x 26783 – 160698).

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.56.43 PM

And, for fun pretending to be diving down a rabbit hole, I just googled images related to 26783 and there is a promoted image for the number. What could “House of Wu” mean? Wuhan? The plot thickens 🙂

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 10.06.36 PM

 

20200329 Day 89: Back to the Future

20200329_ClassicCar
Classic car parked near West Cliff, Santa Cruz, CA

Santa Cruz, CA: I took a stroll along the beach on West Cliff. This weekend, the parking lots began being closed off to discourage people from gathering on the beaches and trails. There were many people still walking along the beach and in the neighborhoods nearby. I saw a classic car parked in one of the neighborhoods.

20200329_WestCliffParkingClosed
Parking along West Cliff is now closed in Santa Cruz, CA

Today it was also announced that the “15 days to flatten the curve” plan of social distancing guidelines has been extended to 45 days. New York still has the most new total and new deaths due to COVID-19 at 965 and 82, respectively. New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Louisiana, California, and Washington all had reported 10-21 daily deaths yesterday. The statistics from worldometers.info also show the US with a total of 142,224 cases, 2,485 deaths, and 4,559 recovered. Both Pres. Trump and Dr. Fauci are in sync with preparing the country for 100,000 or more deaths due to COVID-19.

I’m still hoping to intercept a future – to head in a way back to the future of a parallel time line that I was in before I started daily (more or less) blogging 89 days ago. I’ve somewhat arbitrarily selected June 8, 2020, as the date I wish to intercept. Or, perhaps, I’ve sent myself a message from the future that caused me to pick that date for some reason.

 

 

20200328 Day 88: World War C – Humans vs. Coronaviruses

Parallel Life Exploration (PLE) is one universe surfing technique that I use to help me understand what is going on in my own universe. Through PLE, I can get a fuller picture of my Quantum Self and also understand the Quantum Environment in which my Quantum Self is existing.

I am using the terms “Quantum Self” and “Quantum Environment” to refer to the Multiverse versions of “Self” and “Environment”. The Multiverse versions can be thought of as multidimensional and probabilistic. “Self” and “Environment” represent a single (classical) slice of their respective Multiverse versions.

Your Quantum Self is simultaneously existing in all of the possible universes that it could exist in without violating the (known and unknown) laws of physics. Similarly, the Quantum Environment is the superposition of all of the environments of these possible universes.

For example, this morning I had a brief feeling of a parallel world. I was watching a video that was attempting to encourage people to sacrifice more to fight the spread of this novel coronavirus that is infecting the entire population of the world. The video referenced war times and what past generations have had to suffer. It made a plea for people to just stay home and watch TV – how this was very little to ask compared to what has been asked in the past during war situations. It struct me that we are literally in a world war, World War C, with all of humanity against a 125 nm coronavirus. I then felt connected to the parallel world in which the world was at war but against each other – humans against humans – as has been in the past. I noticed the similar feelings of fear and helplessness that would exist in both universes. I noticed the similar loss of life that would occur in both universes. As a planet, we are beginning to resonate with the energy of a world war. US President Trump has been reluctant to use the Defense Production Act, but yesterday made a point to use it against General Motors for the making of additional ventilators which are in short supply. During times like now with high emotion, it is easier to Quantum Sense parallel realities. We are now in World War C.

As I attempt to surf back to a more peaceful universe, I want to take with me Chris Mann’s parody music video “My Corona”:

Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 7.54.41 AM
My Corona by Chris Mann (https://chrismannmusic.com)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojrtwXqqc6g

20200327F Day 87: Unemployment, Stock Market, and COVID-19 Cases are All Up

This week a record 3.28 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits. Yesterday, the Dow had it’s best 3-day gain since 1931 and today it finished the week up 12.8%, it’s best weekly advance since 1938. The S&P 500 rose 10.3% – best week since 2008. The Nasdaq rose 9.1% – best week since 2009. U.S. COVID-19 cases topped 100,000.  U.S. Influenza A cases topped 128,000 and Influenza B cases topped 113,000. Also, the largest relief package ever, at $2 trillion for coronavirus relief, was signed into law.

 

20200326h Day 86: 74 days until June 8th

When I imagine June 8th, it feels like just another day in the parallel reality without a coronavirus pandemic spreading across the world. And yet I know COVID-19 outbreaks will most likely still be occurring. The universe I sense and wish to surf to has the following characteristics:

  1. I don’t think about or talk to anyone about coronaviruses or pandemics;
  2. Everyone I know who wants a job, has a job;
  3. The local newspaper only has an occasionally story about a new local coronavirus case and there are no sustained outbreaks nearby;
  4. Daily whitehouse.gov press briefings are no longer happening;
  5. Doctors have a standard treatment procedure for COVID-19 that brings the CFR down to the same level as seasonal flu;
  6. The stock market has recovered somewhat and volatility is rare;
  7. Unfortunately, the confirmed number of COVID-19 cases and deaths will have far surpassed the number of confirmed number of Influenza cases and deaths; and
  8. Grocery stores are fully stocked and N95 masks are available at normal prices.