The CDC thinks that between 20-50% of people who are infected with COVID 19 are asymptomatic. Those people will likely have long-term immunity and measurable antibodies. Knowledge of antibody status could be very helpful in deciding about interacting with others. In addition, those with antibodies might be able to donate plasma and help someone who is infected.
I am now able to offer a very accurate antibody test for SARS-CoV-2. Anybody who would like this test can call us at 770-382-1984 to schedule for a blood draw. The cost is $90 and the results should be available within a week and can be sent to you via our secure web portal or by mail, whichever you prefer.
The antibody tests from my office will be performed by Clinical Pathology Labs who will use Roche’s Elecsys Immunoassay which will measure the presence of three different antibodies: IgG, IgM, IgA.
Visit the following links for more information about antibodies and antibody testing:
FDA Emergency Use Authorization process
Clinical Pathology Lab Fact Sheet on the Elecsys Anti-CoV-2 Immunoassay
COVID 19 and Antibodies
Call us if you would like to schedule your test.
When President Trump announced “Operation Warp Speed” he claimed we might have a vaccine to fight SARS-CoV-2 within six months. I chuckled and wondered if Captain Kirk was going to get Dr. McCoy to beam something back from the future. Almost as unrealistic as that is the idea that a safe and effective vaccine could be developed within six months.
The CDC says that it takes several years to make a vaccine and their link to historyofvaccines.org explains the vaccine process in detail. Vaccine production requires human clinical trials and they can only be started after the exploratory and pre-clinical phases. Animal experiments must come before human experiments which can’t be rushed because it takes time to monitor for immediate and delayed side effects. Then more time is needed to determine efficacy. All this takes several years.
The only way to get a vaccine approved and produced in six months is to bypass a lot of the pre-clinical phases and rush through the clinical trials. A lot of pharmaceutical and biotech companies will be jumping at the chance to get warp- speed funding for their warp-speed their trials.
Moderna seems to have a head start on all of them because one of their board members and heavy investors is Moncep Slaoui who was appointed by President Trump to lead the Warp Speed vaccine project. Moderna is a very interesting company with a unique concept. Their proposed vaccines and future medicines rely on their ability to manufacture genetic codes in the form of mRNA which they want to deliver into a human. The mRNA code will be taken into cells to make a new protein. Their Coronavirus vaccine will consist of injected mRNA that tells your cells to make the unique Coronavirus spike protein which will then be recognized by your body so that you make antibodies. The antibodies are supposed to be protective in case you encounter the real SARS-CoV-2.
Is it safe? Will it work? We are about to find out because Moderna is about to start their Phase 2 trial. They had already been approved by Dr. Anthony Fauci at the NIAID to start a Phase 1 trial back on March 16th. That means that prior to March 16th Moderna must have already done enough research with animal testing to get approval, right? When did Moderna do all that stuff? I mean, Dr. Fauci keeps saying that we still don’t know much about the novel SARS-CoV-2.
Moderna’s webpage explains that the “first clinical batch, which was funded by CEPI, was completed on February 7, 2020 and underwent analytical testing; it was shipped to NIH on February 24, 42 days from sequence selection. The first participant in the NIAID-led Phase 1 study of mRNA-1273 was dosed on March 16, 63 days from sequence selection to Phase 1 study dosing.”
So, they had 63 days prior to February 7th to do their animal studies. Is that enough time to organize and test a completely different type of vaccine? Did they do animal studies at all? I doubt it. More likely, they relied on prior studies done on a different mRNA molecule derived from the first SARS or MERS. Stay tuned.
The speed with which Moderna was able to move is amazing and it makes me uneasy. Even more amazing is that the CEO of CEPI (one of the funders of the “first batch”) Dr. Richard Hackett was almost clairvoyant because as early as JANUARY 17th, just two days after the first deaths were reported in China, he was already thinking of ways to get out a vaccine.
The bottom line is that there is a lot of momentum to push through a Coronavirus vaccine. There are literally billions of dollars on the table. The stage is set for conflicts, corruption and bad science with the possible outcome being an unsafe and ineffective vaccine.
I recommend extreme caution before you ever decide to get any Warp-Speed vaccine.
This post started out to review the Plandemic movie, because several people had forwarded it to me and asked what I thought. Plandemic is like a mini-documentary in the form of an interview of Dr. Judy Mikovits. It tries to link bad science and Dr. Fauci to the Coronavirus pandemic and there is a cast of other supporting characters consisting of mostly ER doctors who shed light on some of the problems with the COVID data and its interpretation.
My alarm bells started going off pretty early. Dr. Mikovits is obviously smart and has a good command of scientific concepts and language. She has a dual PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and has authored dozens of scientific papers and worked at the National Cancer Institute and the private Whittemore Petersen Institute (WPI). She said several things that weren’t true and the fact-checking article in the journal Science has a good summary.
In the movie, she repeatedly claims that Dr. Fauci was the mastermind behind suppressing her research on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and implies that he played a role in her arrest, but it is lacking in details. Her Wikipedia page describes it clear enough.
Overall, I think Plandemic is a heavily biased movie that uses Dr. Micovits' story to discredit Dr. Fauci, the scientific community and "the government" and it doesn't add any evidence like you would need for a good conspiracy theory. Dr. Micovits didn't appear credible to me.
If you want to learn more about Dr. Mikovits, you should listen to this interview by Dr. Joseph Mercola. I watched it and took notes. If you don’t have the 90 minutes to watch the whole thing, then I encourage you to at least watch the first 10 minutes because it is very instructive.
The interview was eye opening for two reasons. First, it reveals that Dr. Mikovits can not offer a cogent summary of what she thinks is causing COVID 19. The ghost of Dr. Fauci is ever-present in her blizzard of loosely connected ideas and theories. It appears that she thinks COVID 19 is caused by a coronavirus created in a Wuhan lab and somehow Fort Detrick is involved. But that’s not all. The disease called COVID 19 apparently also requires prior exposure to other things like tainted vaccines and/or blood from infected cell lines from monkey kidneys, dog tissue and/or the mouse virus called XMRV.
She talks about XMRV a lot. For sure, she thinks, those who are dying of COVID are those who have been previously infected with XMRV and she says there is a lot of data to support that. She is confident that those in Italy received a Flu vaccine that was tainted. She also asserts that XMRV causes Chronic Fatigue Syndrome but her one retracted study is the only one to show that; XMRV or other retroviruses are also linked to autism, Lou Gehrig’s disease, fibromyalgia, lyme disease, cancer, cytopenias, thrombosis, and the cytokine storm. The only consistent theme apparent to me is that she thinks she is persecuted by the FDA, NIH, government and Dr. Fauci.
The second eye opener is that Dr. Mercola appears to embrace all her notions and accepts her barrage as credible.
In my last article I analyzed the COVID data from NYC to show that for the general population, the overall risk of death from the new coronavirus is very low. I concluded that the quarantine measures we have taken are too extreme and advised that if you want to get a better sense of the impact of this virus, you should look at good sources of data like Worldometer.com or even the CDC.* Since then, I have been trying to find more information, particularly on the age distribution of deaths.
The CDC website* does not have good demographic information on COVID deaths but the Georgia Department of Public Health webpage does. The GA site is excellent and is loaded with a lot of useful information on COVID like how to protect yourself, how to get a test and what symptoms to look for. It also has guidance for schools, churches, restaurants, employers, and healthcare facilities. I recommend you check it out.
Their Daily Status Report is very useful because it allows you to download the demographic data on all Georgia cases and draw your own conclusions. I created the bar graph below from their data.
When you look at the graphs it is easy to see that the novel Coronavirus is most dangerous for the elderly. As of May 5th, the median age of death was 75 and 63.8% of all deaths occurred in those over 70.
The GA data shows that the virus is not very dangerous for the young- in fact there was not a single death from COVID in anyone under the age of 22 and there were only 6 deaths in those under the age of 30. In addition, there were only 22 deaths in those under 60 who had no know medical conditions.
The takeaway message is that protecting the elderly is very important. Those who are 70 and above and those with medical conditions should be very cautious and stay away from anybody who is at risk of transmitting the virus. For now, I think they should avoid public spaces as much as possible and the young and healthy should commit to helping them.
*There is good data on CDC.gov but you have to really hunt for it and he information is often presented in a way that is misleading. Be careful. Their lack of clarity is evident when you read their information on Influenza and Flu. I will post some articles explaining the difference between Influenza and "Flu" and compare them to SARS-COV-2 .
The story we hear about the novel Coronavirus from Dr. Fauci, the CDC, government leaders and the mainstream media is that SARS-CoV-2 is so dangerous that in order to prevent millions of deaths we had to shut down the global economy and isolate almost all healthy people. This portrayal is based on models that have proven to be inaccurate.
SARS-CoV-2 is in actuality not as dangerous to our society as they say and our extreme reaction to it is unnecessary. While it is a contagious respiratory virus that is more deadly than the typical seasonal Influenza Virus, your risk of dying from it is still exceedingly low. In fact, you are statistically more likely to die from a non-COVID pneumonia every week of every year.
I do not want to minimize the pain of death and suffering from COVID. On a personal and human level, the effects are devastating for thousands of families. One of my dearest patients died and it was tragic and very sad. At the same time, we need to objectively assess our risks so we can continue to function as a healthy society.
New York City
NYC has suffered from COVID more than any city in the world, so looking at their data is very useful. At the time of this writing, 13,365 people have died from COVID which means that out of the 8.4 million people who live there, 99.998% of them have not died of it. In addition, if you are healthy and young, your risk of dying of COVID is even lower. A lot lower! According to Worldometer, as of April 14th in NYC only 4.4% of all COVID deaths (300 people) occurred among those who were under 65 and without known underlying medical conditions. In other words, 95.6% of the NYC deaths occurred in people who were over 65 and/or had underlying medical conditions. Isn’t that helpful information? Have you heard that before? Does it change your perspective?
I would support a different policy that recommends quarantining only those vulnerable people and not the general population. Common sense says you should stay home if you are sick, do not cough on people, keep your hands clean and away from your face and be very careful around the elderly and medically fragile.
Get better information
We have accepted very extreme measures because the news that we continue to hear from the government leaders and the mainstream media promotes a lot of fear. I think we should stop listening so much to them and start looking at the actual data so we can make good decisions about how to not only recover from this epidemic, but how to manage others.
We are screening all our patients carefully to ensure that you will be safe here. We are currently not seeing patients in our office who have fever or COVID symptoms. We can easily provide consultations over the phone or by video.