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…

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…

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…

Antiviral used to treat cat coronavirus also works against COVID-19

Fast-tracked University of Alberta research leads to phase 1 clinical trials

Antiviral used to treat cat coronavirus also works against COVID-19Researchers at the University of Alberta are preparing to launch clinical trials of a drug used to cure a deadly disease caused by a coronavirus in cats that they expect will also be effective as a treatment for humans against COVID-19. “In just two months, our results have shown that the drug is effective at…

The overblown panic of COVID-19

We trampled, in fear, over memory and institutions, obsessively protective and morally dismissive of dignity and human life

The overblown panic of COVID-19The schizophrenic aspects of Canadian culture and their influence on governments’ behaviour are increasingly evident. The most palpable example lies in how we trampled, in fear, over memory and institutions, obsessively protective and morally dismissive of dignity and human life simultaneously. The COVID-19 lockdown has been a strange time for people who are struggling to…

How to breathe easier while wearing a protective mask

Here are five ways to help people of all ages get used to wearing one

How to breathe easier while wearing a protective maskNow that masks are mandatory in schools and other public spaces in many jurisdictions, anyone nervous about wearing one may feel like they’re really going to suffocate – but there’s no reason to panic. Wearing a mask is safe and doesn’t physically limit breathing, said respirologist Christopher Ewing, of the U of A's Faculty of Medicine &…

Not using cash during COVID-19 could make you overspend

U of A experts offer tips on how to handle your money during the pandemic – including decontaminating bills and coins

Not using cash during COVID-19 could make you overspendMany businesses worried about COVID-19 contamination are touchy about taking cash, but the greater risk may be in overusing our plastic. Shoppers using credit or debit cards for every purchase instead of cash and coins will have to watch their spending habits, said Mike Maier, a financial expert with the Alberta School of Business at the University…

Youth sports opportunity gap widens during pandemic

Norway has a successful youth sports system, accessible to all. The national lottery earmarks millions for youth sports every year

Youth sports opportunity gap widens during pandemicI’ve been a youth sports coach for 17 years. For the most part, it’s been very rewarding. However, one of the hardest aspects has been watching kids drop out of sports because they no longer can afford to pay to play. It’s heartbreaking. Social injustice is a hot topic these days. However, there’s one area…

We need clarity to conquer COVID-19

The mere act of informing the public and mandating certain actions seems to still bedevil politicians and public-policy practitioners

We need clarity to conquer COVID-19By Derek Ng, Deborah Prabhu and Allan Bonner Contributors “Pandemics are a magnifying glass that sheds light on social conditions,” says May-Brith Ohman Nielsen, professor of history at the University of Agder in Norway. Pandemics lay bare the failures of a country’s organization and capacity that went unnoticed during uneventful times. Conflicting policies, staff vacancies,…

Pandemic policy is mob policy

No matter how economically suicidal certain policies may appear, fear wins the battle for hearts and minds

Pandemic policy is mob policyPandemic public policy is now a field unto itself, saturated with experts, desperately low on data, yet with dangerously high stakes, at least politically. Take the case of New Zealand. Here’s a prime minister and a country that has done, according to the chattering classes, everything right. A serious, long-term lockdown, early on, entirely stamped…

Choir director aims to find out if singing spreads COVID-19

U of A vocal acoustics expert recruiting singers and infectious disease specialists to assess risk of transmission

Choir director aims to find out if singing spreads COVID-19The director of the University of Alberta’s Chorale Saint-Jean is doing research to determine the risk of transmitting COVID-19 through singing. Skeptical of what he calls the “anecdotal hysteria” about the dangers of choral singing, Laurier Fagnan points to a high-profile case of infection among members of a Washington State choir in early March, before social distancing and other…

COVID-19 and scientific fallibility

The pandemic has underlined that we should neither disregard nor worship uncritically at the altar of science

COVID-19 and scientific fallibilityIn addition to upending 21st century normalcy, the COVID-19 pandemic has shone the light on science itself. Just how reliable is it? It’s an interesting question. First, though, let me be open about my default settings. I’m generally very big on medical science, believing that without it I mightn’t be alive today. Ireland, where I…

Here’s why things will never be the same at the grocery store

From online grocery shopping to home delivery to cooking with fresh ingredients to higher prices to fewer choices in stores

Here’s why things will never be the same at the grocery storeMore than five months into the pandemic, we can start to see how life will look on the other side. At the grocery store, some changes will disappear while others will stay with us for the foreseeable future. Food is getting more expensive everywhere, including Canada. We expect prices to increase by four per cent.…
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