Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attack

Understanding how the conditionally approved COVID-19 drug works is key to improving treatments, says U of A researcher

Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attackResearchers at the University of Alberta have discovered a novel, second mechanism of action by the antiviral drug remdesivir against SARS-CoV-2, according to findings published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The research team previously demonstrated how remdesivir inhibits the COVID-19 virus’s polymerase or replication machinery in a test tube. Matthias Götte, chair of medical microbiology and immunology…

Little evidence vitamin D prevents severe COVID-19

Getting too much vitamin D can also cause health problems, says U of A pediatric kidney specialist

Little evidence vitamin D prevents severe COVID-19At the beginning of May, a pair of studies emerged suggesting people who are deficient in vitamin D are more likely to experience serious health complications if infected with COVID-19. Sales of the micronutrient soared as a scared public tried to gain any advantage they could over the virus. Unfortunately, University of Alberta pediatrics professor Todd…

Group designs better CPR board for resuscitating COVID-19 patients

Pandemic inspires University of Alberta innovation in emergency and critical care

Group designs better CPR board for resuscitating COVID-19 patientsA potential need sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired an Edmonton team of clinicians and academics to build a better cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) board for use in emergency departments and intensive care units (ICUs). Because of COVID-19’s attack on the lungs, many patients in emergency departments and intensive care are placed on their bellies…

We don’t need elections now, we need leadership

Elections will turn us away from dealing with the real issues. And we don't seem to have the means to conduct safe voting

We don’t need elections now, we need leadershipWe would really like to have many things right now, even though the prospect of getting them any time soon is rather low. A vaccine against COVID-19 is likely at the top of the list. A bit more certainty about our work and social prospects is probably a close second. Instead of dealing with the…

Sex is okay, just don’t sing

Sex advice for pandemic prevention makes as much sense as implementing a security system while leaving the front door open

Sex is okay, just don’t singThe B.C. Centre for Disease Control threw logic out the window with its “COVID-19 and Sex” advice. The document reveals contradiction, ignorance and hypocrisy. “If you’re feeling fine and have no symptoms of COVID-19, you can still have sex. If you’re feeling sick, skip sex,” it says. Thanks. “Not tonight, I have a headache,” is…

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learning

Teamwork by parents, teachers and students is key, says U of A education expert who offers four ways to make it happen

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learningFor students learning from home this year, there will be some lingering challenges from last spring’s COVID-19 shutdown: parents busy balancing their own work needs, no in-person connection with teachers, technology headaches. But the best way to support online learners is through solid teamwork involving everyone in the equation, says a University of Alberta education…

Beware compulsory vaccinations

Canadians are in greater need of immunity from undue government intrusion than they are from any disease

Beware compulsory vaccinationsNew Brunswick’s attempt to remove vaccine exemptions has sparked a political, ethical and constitutional controversy. The benefits of the legislation were marginal at best, but the heavy-handed tactics used to try to implement it were even worse. Citizens beware. “Stop the hysteria over measles outbreaks,” wrote infectious-diseases specialist Neil Rau and former Ontario chief medical…

Are COVID-19 safety measures protecting Canada’s health workers?

Study assessing physical, mental health effects of treating COVID-19 patients one of two U of A projects receiving federal funding

Are COVID-19 safety measures protecting Canada’s health workers?There’s heightened anxiety among physicians and jumps in depression among nurses, health-care aides and personal support workers, according to early data from a University of Alberta study. The study is looking into the effectiveness of safety measures to protect the physical and mental health of Canada’s health-care workforce treating those with COVID-19. Occupational epidemiologist Nicola Cherry,…

The restaurant industry can help save the economy

But the federal government and most provinces have failed to help the hospitality sector. Only New Brunswick is making a difference

The restaurant industry can help save the economyThe best way to get an economy going again is to get to Canadians’ wallets by way of their stomachs. But it’s a long road. Up to 25 per cent of restaurants in Canada have closed for the season and perhaps for good. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce expects 60 per cent of restaurants to…

Economic freedom on the wane worldwide

Economic freedom on the wane worldwideTwo troubling questions lurk behind the results of the Fraser Institute’s 2020 Economic Freedom of the World report, released Sept. 10. This year’s report is based on 2018 data (the most recent available). By 2018, global economic freedom had recovered from the 2008 financial crisis and was at its highest level ever, albeit by just…

Canada’s economic revival requires broad strategy

A narrow focus on the green/clean sector won’t get the job done. The sector is too small and the workforce’s skill set doesn't suit the goals

Canada’s economic revival requires broad strategyBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. After the shock Canadians have experienced in 2020, an economic recovery that focuses on jobs, incomes and business growth is much more important than whether it’s ‘green’ or some other colour. However, in Canadian politics these days green invariably symbolizes good. Never mind that green…

Fear creating costly food waste in Canadian homes

Canadians are throwing away more food, in part because we’re cooking more at home but also out of irrational fear

Fear creating costly food waste in Canadian homesFood waste creates an invisible bill you must pay every day. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the average Canadian household wasted a little more than two kg in food a week. But since March, our lives have changed and most Canadians have spent more time at home. So are Canadians generating more food waste at home?…

Multiple factors will influence pricing for COVID-19 vaccine in Canada

Need to supply enough for herd immunity may push down the price per dose, according to U of A expert

Multiple factors will influence pricing for COVID-19 vaccine in CanadaConventional drug costing models are unlikely to apply when it comes to putting a price tag on a vaccine against COVID-19 for Canadians, according to health economist Christopher McCabe. McCabe is with the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, and also heads Alberta’s Institute of Health Economics. “When you have an infection that…

COVID-19 has changed psychiatry forever: researchers

Alberta has capacity, experience to lead the way in the new field of ‘crisis psychiatry,’ say U of A psychiatrists

COVID-19 has changed psychiatry forever: researchersThe COVID-19 pandemic has shown that treatments for psychiatric ailments are as essential to maintain during a public health crisis as those for conditions such as cancer and renal failure, according to an editorial penned by a team of University of Alberta researchers in the Canadian Medical Association’s Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience. “The combination of the stress…

Why remote learning takes new ways of thinking

Students, teachers must be more mindful of how they think, says U of A expert who offers advice on making the shift

Why remote learning takes new ways of thinkingAs students log in to online classes this fall, they’ll have to adjust their thinking caps in a new way, a University of Alberta education expert advises. “People will have to be more mindful of how they think, not just what they think,” said Greg Thomas, a Faculty of Education expert in metacognition – one’s self-reflection on…
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