Researchers find signs of Covid-19 mutations in NYC sewage, pointing to possible dog and rat infections. After months of testing and re-testing, they found four combinations of COVID mutations that, when compared to a global database of more than 2.5 million sequenced variants, had not been seen before. The four variants are at least somewhat antibody-resistant, which could reduce the effectiveness of vaccines, the researchers found.
As with other animals, COVID-19 could be infecting dogs and rats, leading to new mutations and an outbreak in New York City’s sewers. While animal-to-human transmission of the virus is exceedingly rare, it has been seen in the U.S. in minks
These lineages contain mutations rarely observed in clinical samples, including Q493K, Q498Y, H519N and T572N. Many of these mutations were found to expand the tropism of SARS-CoV-2 pseudoviruses by allowing infection of cells expressing the human, mouse, or rat ACE2 receptor.
Antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 were detected in 33% of the 481 samples collected from January 2020 through 2021. None of the deer populations surveyed showed signs of clinical illness associated with SARS-CoV-2. Results of the study indicate that certain white-tailed deer populations in Illinois, Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania were exposed to SARS-CoV-2.
It is important to note that this surveillance was designed to determine exposure of deer to SARS-CoV-2 in their natural environment. It was not designed to determine whether the deer were replicating and shedding SARS-CoV-2.
Two more mink have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus from a Fraser Valley, British Columbia, farm already under quarantine from positive tests in May. In this instance, four mink had escaped their cages and were captured on the farm.
As a result of the new infections, a moratorium has been placed on any new mink farms in B.C., with a cap on existing mink farms at current numbers.
Three B.C. mink farms have had animals test positive since December 2020. “All three remain under quarantine, with no mink being moved to or from the properties.”
Here, we show that in a widely used transgenic mouse model of COVID-19, lethality is invariably associated with viral neuroinvasion and the ensuing neuronal disease, while lung inflammation remains moderate.
Zvimba villagers in Zimbabwe are living in fear as their cattle are dying in large numbers with some suggesting that they could be dying from COVID-19.
Some villagers who spoke to Pindula News said the mortality rate was high in Kutama village.
Asked if Veterinary officers were assisting them, they said the officers were clueless. Said, one villager:
_They are clueless. They are also surprised._
Meanwhile, a study “Experimental Infection of Cattle with SARS-CoV-2” conducted by Lorenz Ulrich, Kerstin Wernike, Donata Hoffmann, Thomas C. Mettenleiter, and Martin Beer of Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Insel Riems, Germany, observed that under experimental conditions, cattle show low vulnerability to SARS-CoV-2 infection.
We studied 71 ferrets belonging to 7 owners; the ferrets were used as working animals for rabbit hunting in Ciudad Real Province, central Spain. All 71 ferrets were included in the study, and none showed clinical signs of any illness. Group sizes ranged from 4 to 21 (mean 10). Twenty ferrets belonging to groups 1 and 2 were resampled 66 days after initial sampling. Information on coronavirus disease in the owners was not available. Sampling took place during August–November 2020.
We found SARS-CoV-2 RNA in swab samples from 6 of the 71 ferrets.
We conclude that natural SARS-CoV-2 infection in kept ferrets does occur in circumstances of high viral circulation in the human population However, the high cycle thresholds observed and the lack of virus-positive ferrets at resampling suggest that small ferret populations are less able to maintain prolonged virus circulation than large, farmed mink populations.
The Oakland Zoo in California has vaccinated tigers, Black bears, Grizzly bears, mountain lions and ferrets against COVID-19 this week and is poised to inoculate chimpanzees, fruit bats and pigs. The animals are being given experimental doses of the Zoetis vaccine, said Dr. Alex Herman, vice president of veterinary services at Oakland Zoo. The company is donating 11,000 doses to 70 zoos across the United States.
In Denmark, SARS-CoV-2 variants co-circulating in mink and humans collectively acquired at least 35 different amino acid changes in the spike protein. These SARS-CoV-2 variants belong to lineage B.1.1.298. The receptor binding domain (RBD) substitution Y453F, also observed among Dutch farmed mink, appeared in the first transmission Cluster in June. A two-amino acid residue deletion (ΔH69/V70) in the N-terminal domain appeared together with the Y453F in August 2020 and occurred in the subsequent Clusters 2, 3, and 4. A new variant, termed Cluster 5, with two additional amino acid substitutions, i.e., I692V downstream of the transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2)/furin cleavage site and M1229I within the transmembrane domain, was identified in September 2020 on 5 mink farms and in 12 human cases (age: 7–79 years; symptoms: asymptomatic to mild).
Given the potential of this variant to spread among humans, as observed for other mink-associated variants, and an increased risk of antigenic alterations with the multiple spike changes, it was deemed necessary to do a rapid evaluation of this “Cluster 5” variant in vitro. To aid timely public health responses, Statens Serum Institut released a preliminary report on 10 November 2020. A more detailed evaluation of this Cluster 5 variant and its in vitro fitness and neutralization potential is presented here.
The World Wildlife Fund has renewed its calls for American mink farms in Spain to be closed down following the news that another four outbreaks of Covid-19 have been identified at establishments in the Galicia province of A Coruña.
These latest outbreaks bring the total at mink farms in Spain up to 9, including 7 in A Coruña, and the WWF welcome the news that the issue is on the agenda for the current meeting of the European Agriculture and Fisheries Council (AGRIFISH). The organization continues to petition for the forced closure of the 25 mink farms in Galicia, due not only to the proven link between the species and the spread of coronavirus but also to the threat the invasive species represents to native wildlife.
According to the WWF, the Spanish authorities have been slow to take action regarding mink farms, not tightening the controls and checks at these establishments until late last year in contrast with the rapid reactions of other European governments, such as those of the Netherlands and Denmark.
A SARS-CoV-2 strain found on a Polish mink farm can be directly transmitted from the animals to humans and vice versa, the Agriculture Ministry has said. The mink virus variant, the first detected in farm animals in Poland is, up to now, not identical to any of the new strains found recently in humans, but belongs to an animal strain well-known to epidemiologists, the ministry said in a statement on Saturday. It also differs from the strain detected in Danish minks, the ministry added.
The infection on the Polish mink farm in the northern county of Kartuzy was detected in late January. All 5,800 minks have been culled.
The Polish agriculture ministry stated that minks pose a threat of “an uncontrolled spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the formation of dangerous mutations because they are significantly susceptible to infection by this virus”.
Poland has joined forces with other EU countries to push the European Commission into banning mink farming in Europe because of the COVID-19 threat the animals pose to humans and wildlife, the Agriculture Ministry stated.
There is something deeply surreal about Britain’s current Covid-19 policy right now. The UK has one of the fastest rising coronavirus case rates in the world. It has the largest Delta variant case load in Europe, and it has recently confessed to having more than 2 million Long-Covid patients. Yet, despite this, it still intends to lift all Covid restrictions within days and declare the pandemic over in Britain.
In a further twist today, the UK government is now also reportedly considering abandoning the publication of Covid infection and death rates in future, presumably to hide the level of carnage brought about by such absurd policymaking.
Britain, through lazy indecision, has allowed itself to become a veritable breeding ground for dangerous new Sars-CoV-2 variants including B.1.1.7 and B.1.617.2. It has then allowed those variants to seed across the globe through its porous border system, causing untold death and misery for millions. That is neither acceptable, responsible or tolerable in today’s interconnected world.
If no effort is made by one country to control the Covid-19 virus, then all other countries with fail along with it. For one country to abandon the fight unilaterally against the virus is effectively condemning every country on Earth to an endless cycle of ever more dangerous strains of coronavirus from which many will die and many more will never recover.
—– UK Gov Long Covid Study —-
—- UK coronavirus cases —-
— Total cases v Long Covid —
2 Million cases of Long Covid. 4.7 million confirmed coronavirus cases in Britain. That means that nearly half of all those infected since the beginning of the pandemic could have Long Covid.
Australian scientists have described how they used high-performance computer modelling of the form of the SARS-CoV-2 virus at the beginning of the pandemic to predict its ability to infect humans and a range of 12 domestic and exotic animals.
Surprisingly, the results showed that SARS-CoV-2 bound to ACE2 on human cells more tightly than any of the tested animal species, including bats and pangolins. If one of the animal species tested was the origin, it would normally be expected to show the highest binding to the virus.
“We also deduced that some domesticated animals like cats, dogs and cows are likely to be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection too.”
Study: In silico comparison of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein-ACE2 binding affinities across species and implications for virus origin
The SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus outbreak has been detected in two mink farms in the Biała Podlaska district (eastern Poland), the Chief Veterinary Officer informed. This is the second outbreak of COVID-19 in mink in Poland.
“The outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 was detected in two farms with a total of 8,000 female and 29,000 young mink, located at the same address in the Biała Podlaska district,” an announcement on the General Veterinary Inspectorate website stated.
The presence of the virus was detected on the basis of the laboratory test results carried out at the State Veterinary Institute in Puławy (eastern Poland). The samples for farm research were collected on June 16. “In the above-mentioned farms, samples were taken from 20 mink (40 swabs in total). In the case of 3 animals, the results were positive,” the press release said.
“All minks from farms where the virus has been confirmed will be put to sleep and disposed of,” Paweł Piotrowski, Lubelskie province head veterinarian stressed.
Image by Dzīvnieku brīvība – Baltic Devon Mink 09, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=87445687
** The fur farming industry, in particular the mink industry, threatens the entire world with a storm of deadly new Sars-CoV-2 mutations. It must be closed to prevent further outbreaks which could become uncontrollable **