Your Intro to 21st Century Medicine and Conquering Alzheimer’s

A few days ago, I posted on a podcast that discussed new ways understanding the causes of neural degeneration from diseases such as ALS, Parkinsons and MS. The exciting thing about the podcast for me is that medical researchers are beginning to focus on the causes of these problems, rather then just trying to control symptoms. And they are beginning to understand that the brain is vulnerable to exogenous pathogens and toxins.

Here is the weird thing. The causes of neural degeneration may be complex rather than singular.In other words, the immune system processes that attack our brain function may be reacting to a variety of pathogens or other exogenous factors rather than just malfunctioning.

This apparently is the case with the dreaded Alzheimer’s disease. The podcast below gets into why this is so, and what we can do to avoid Alzheimer’s onset. Dr,. Bredesen (the expert speaking) thinks that as we understand these processes better, Alzheimer’s will no longer pose a major health threat. WOW!

Check it out!

Covid-19 Bulletin -Bio Block To the Rescue!

It has been slow in coming, but finally, a new Estonian protective treatment for the coronavirus has hit the market. It is called bio block.

It is a nasal spray, and a squirt into each nostril will protect you from infection for around 4 hours. Perfect for times when you will be indoors in a group.

The hope is that when paired with masks this sort of protection is a flexible way to stave off a surge in a given locale. So, for example, while infection rates in Estonia are going down due to our lockdown, we have just seen a local surge in the small town of Otepää. We will see how effective bio block is in keeping that surge to a minimum.

I am excited about this. While the US and soon Europe may be on the road to vaccine control of the virus, the pandemic is raging elsewhere (especially in India and Brazil). Just today, Nepal reports that it is in crisis. We may also soon see a surge in Africa. Even if the vaccine patents are waived, it will take time to vaccinate populations in those places. Meanwhile, this type of protection can save countless lives.

And there is more! We still do not know when and how frequently the virus will mutate, and what effect the mutations will have on vaccine effectiveness. Adjusting the bio block to deal with variants can be done much faster than making and testing new vaccines.

So congrats to those who thought of this (especially Mart Ustav) and those who worked so hard to get it approved and produced!

Covid-19 Daily Update

Of Special Note

  • US recovery brings hope
  • Indian surge continues, risk of new wave in Africa

From NYT

  • United States / Recovery – Americans have entered a new, hopeful phase of the coronavirus pandemic as the outlook has improved across the nation. Numbers of cases and deaths have dipped, and more people are shrugging off masks, venturing into restaurants and returning to prepandemic routines. Public health experts said that while they still expected significant local and regional surges, they did not think that those would be as widespread or that they would match past peaks because of a successful vaccination campaign. More than 56 percent of adults in the U.S. have received at least one shot, and more than 30 percent are fully vaccinated. But there are reasons to remain cautious: The pace of vaccinations is slowing. In a sign of flagging demand, only 9 percent of American adults have not been vaccinated and say they would like to get a shot as soon as possible, a poll showed. Experts are now focusing on those who are less willing to get the shots.
  • United States / Data – The U.S. is recording about 49,000 new cases a day, the lowest number since early October, and hospitalizations have plateaued at around 40,000. Nationwide, deaths are hovering around 700 a day, down from a peak of more than 3,000 in January.
United States ›On May 614-day change
New cases
New deaths

From BI

From Vox

From The Gaurdian

US Politics: Liz Cheney at the Mad Tea Party

Ah well, my eternal optimism led me astray. I thought that after the November election, there was a chance to reform the GOP. I thought that some national leaders of the party might present the case that the party has lost its way, and needs to move beyond Donald Trump.

In her own gruff way, Liz Cheney tried to do that. She made the simple assertion that Donald Trump actually lost the election. This should not be a hugely controversial statement. The election IS over. Donald Trump DID lose the election. But the GOP could not stand Cheney’s honesty. She will be ostracized. Loyalty to the dude “trumps” honesty.

Meanwhile, the mad tea party in Arizona continues. Qanon supporters are doing a phony recount to see if there is “bamboo” in certain ballots reflecting votes for Biden. Why? Because those ballots came from China, right? And the Trumpster is thrilled that somehow this might give him back the presidency And Mitch McConnell is playing his “Dr. No” scorched earth game in the senate – refusing to allow any support for ANY initiative coming from the Biden Administration, even as some GOP Congressional figures try to take credit for the Biden Stimulus Bill — that they voted against. And around the country, GOP controlled state officials are trying to figure out how to prevent folks from voting — if they are not going to vote republican.

It is time to wake up to a sad reality in the US. The GOP is no longer a national political party capable of governing. The loony tunes have taken over. And that makes the 2022 election cycle extremely important. If the GOP is able to gain power despite all of this, things are going to get very weird.

Yes, more weird than they are now.

Eccentric British Comedy – Part 2

Yesterday, I embedded a link to the first parts of a British comedy series. We left off with tensions rising and characters developing. We know there will be a plot twist. But can you guess what it will be?

Unfortunately, I cannot embed the video here. But follow this link to YouTube and you can watch it there! And if you missed the first two parts, just scroll down to find my post where they are embedded.

Covid-19 Daily Update

Of Special Interest

  • Us supports vaccine patent waiver to enable poor countries to gain acces
  • Focus on vaccine effectiveness against variants
  • New German vaccine that does not need deep freezing

From NYT

  • United States / Vaccines – The Biden administration said yesterday that it would support lifting patent protections on Covid vaccines, a breakthrough for efforts to produce more doses globally. “The extraordinary circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic call for extraordinary measures,” Katherine Tai, the U.S. trade representative, said in a statement. The U.S. had opposed a proposal at the World Trade Organization to suspend intellectual property protections in an effort to ramp up vaccine production. But its new support, made under growing pressure as the pandemic rages in India and South America, is no guarantee that a waiver will be adopted. The E.U. has also been standing in the way. The pharmaceutical industry responded to the decision with anger. The president of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America called the announcement “an unprecedented step that will undermine our global response to the pandemic and compromise safety.”
  • Germany / Vaccine – The German company CureVac’s new RNA vaccine, which could be ready next month, does not require that doses be kept in a deep freezer, like the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. That means it could more easily deliver the power of RNA vaccines to hard-hit parts of the world.
  • Nepal / Infections – Nepal’s growing coronavirus outbreak has spread to the Himalayas, with an increasing number of climbers on Mount Everest testing positive.
  • Hong Kong / Travel – Hong Kong said that regular flights from Britain would resume on Friday, allowing hundreds of residents stranded since December to return home.
  • Britain / Pandemic Side Effects – In Britain, more than one in five adults experienced some form of depression during the strict lockdown earlier this year, according to the government statistical agency.
  • Spain / Politics – Isabel Díaz Ayuso, a conservative politician dubbed a “Trumpista” by her opponents, won election as Madrid’s regional leader by a landslide after she refused to shut down the capital’s bars and shops.

From BI

From HuffPo

From Vox

From The Guardian

Eccentric British Comedy You Don’t Want to Miss!

I admit it. I am a sucker for British humor. BTW, I do not exclude Irish humor which has some distant connections. But how does one “define” what makes British comedy …. British? It has to do with “sending up” the peculiarities of British sensibilities. Wodehouse, of course, did it very well.

And a series called “Eccentric British Comedy” captures at least some of that Wodehousian charm. Here are the first two episodes. Enjoy! I will post Episodes 3&4 tomorrow!