SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

1381

To compare hospitalisation rates, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and mortality for patients with COVID-19 who were consistently inactive, doing some activity or consistently meeting physical activity guidelines.

1167

Substantial COVID-19 research investment has been allocated to randomized clinical trials (RCTs) on hydroxychloroquine/chloroquine, which currently face recruitment challenges or early discontinuation. We aim to estimate the effects of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine on survival in COVID-19 from all currently available RCT evidence, published and unpublished. We present a rapid meta-analysis of ongoing, completed, or discontinued RCTs on hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine treatment for any COVID-19 patients (protocol: https://osf.io/QESV4/ ). We systematically identified unpublished RCTs (ClinicalTrials.gov, WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, Cochrane COVID-registry up to June 11, 2020), and published RCTs (PubMed, medRxiv and bioRxiv up to October 16, 2020). All-cause mortality has been extracted (publications/preprints) or requested from investigators and combined in random-effects meta-analyses, calculating odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs), separately for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine. Prespecified subgroup analyses include patient setting, diagnostic confirmation, control type, and publication status. Sixty-three trials were potentially eligible. We included 14 unpublished trials (1308 patients) and 14 publications/preprints (9011 patients). Results for hydroxychloroquine are dominated by RECOVERY and WHO SOLIDARITY, two highly pragmatic trials, which employed relatively high doses and included 4716 and 1853 patients, respectively (67% of the total sample size). The combined OR on all-cause mortality for hydroxychloroquine is 1.11 (95% CI: 1.02, 1.20; I² = 0%; 26 trials; 10,012 patients) and for chloroquine 1.77 (95%CI: 0.15, 21.13, I² = 0%; 4 trials; 307 patients). We identified no subgroup effects. We found that treatment with hydroxychloroquine is associated with increased mortality in COVID-19 patients, and there is no benefit of chloroquine. Findings have unclear generalizability to outpatients, children, pregnant women, and people with comorbidities.

761

The SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7 was first identified in December, 2020, in England. We aimed to investigate whether increases in the proportion of infections with this variant are associated with differences in symptoms or disease course, reinfection rates, or transmissibility.

288

To (1) determine if wearing a cloth face mask significantly affected exercise performance and associated physiological responses, and (2) describe perceptual measures of effort and participants' experiences while wearing a face mask during a maximal treadmill test.

252

The role of children in the transmission and community spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is unclear. We aimed to quantify the infectivity of SARS-CoV-2 in nasopharyngeal samples from children compared with adults.

227

Several cases of unusual thrombotic events and thrombocytopenia have developed after vaccination with the recombinant adenoviral vector encoding the spike protein antigen of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (ChAdOx1 nCov-19, AstraZeneca). More data were needed on the pathogenesis of this unusual clotting disorder.

211

Ongoing disease surveillance is a critical tool to mitigate viral outbreaks, especially during a pandemic. Environmental monitoring has significant promise even following widespread vaccination among high-risk populations. The goal of this work is to demonstrate molecular severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) monitoring in bulk floor dust and related samples as a proof of concept of a noninvasive environmental surveillance methodology for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and potentially other viral diseases. Surface swab, passive sampler, and bulk floor dust samples were collected from the rooms of individuals positive for COVID-19, and SARS-CoV-2 was measured with quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (RT-qPCR) and two digital PCR (dPCR) methods. Bulk dust samples had a geometric mean concentration of 163 copies/mg of dust and ranged from nondetects to 23,049 copies/mg of dust detected using droplet digital PCR (ddPCR). An average of 89% of bulk dust samples were positive for the virus by the detection methods compared to 55% of surface swabs and fewer on the passive sampler (19% carpet, 29% polystyrene). In bulk dust, SARS-CoV-2 was detected in 76%, 93%, and 97% of samples measured by qPCR, chip-based dPCR, and droplet dPCR, respectively. Detectable viral RNA in the bulk vacuum bags did not measurably decay over 4 weeks, despite the application of a disinfectant before room cleaning. Future monitoring efforts should further evaluate RNA persistence and heterogeneity in dust. This study did not measure virus infectivity in dust or potential transmission associated with dust. Overall, this work demonstrates that bulk floor dust is a potentially useful matrix for long-term monitoring of viral disease in high-risk populations and buildings.IMPORTANCE Environmental surveillance to assess pathogen presence within a community is proving to be a critical tool to protect public health, and it is especially relevant during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Importantly, environmental surveillance tools also allow for the detection of asymptomatic disease carriers and for routine monitoring of a large number of people as has been shown for SARS-CoV-2 wastewater monitoring. However, additional monitoring techniques are needed to screen for outbreaks in high-risk settings such as congregate care facilities. Here, we demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 can be detected in bulk floor dust collected from rooms housing infected individuals. This analysis suggests that dust may be a useful and efficient matrix for routine surveillance of viral disease.

205

Algorithms have begun to encroach on tasks traditionally reserved for human judgment and are increasingly capable of performing well in novel, difficult tasks. At the same time, social influence, through social media, online reviews, or personal networks, is one of the most potent forces affecting individual decision-making. In three preregistered online experiments, we found that people rely more on algorithmic advice relative to social influence as tasks become more difficult. All three experiments focused on an intellective task with a correct answer and found that subjects relied more on algorithmic advice as difficulty increased. This effect persisted even after controlling for the quality of the advice, the numeracy and accuracy of the subjects, and whether subjects were exposed to only one source of advice, or both sources. Subjects also tended to more strongly disregard inaccurate advice labeled as algorithmic compared to equally inaccurate advice labeled as coming from a crowd of peers.

204

Mask wearing has been advocated by public health officials as a way to reduce the spread of COVID-19. In the United States, policies on mask wearing have varied from state to state over the course of the pandemic. Even as more and more states encourage or even mandate mask wearing, many citizens still resist the notion. Our research examines mask wearing policy and adherence in association with COVID-19 case rates. We used state-level data on mask wearing policy for the general public and on proportion of residents who stated they always wear masks in public. For all 50 states and the District of Columbia (DC), these data were abstracted by month for April ─ September 2020 to measure their impact on COVID-19 rates in the subsequent month (May ─ October 2020). Monthly COVID-19 case rates (number of cases per capita over two weeks) >200 per 100,000 residents were considered high. Fourteen of the 15 states with no mask wearing policy for the general public through September reported a high COVID-19 rate. Of the 8 states with at least 75% mask adherence, none reported a high COVID-19 rate. States with the lowest levels of mask adherence were most likely to have high COVID-19 rates in the subsequent month, independent of mask policy or demographic factors. Mean COVID-19 rates for states with at least 75% mask adherence in the preceding month was 109.26 per 100,000 compared to 249.99 per 100,000 for those with less adherence. Our analysis suggests high adherence to mask wearing could be a key factor in reducing the spread of COVID-19. This association between high mask adherence and reduced COVID-19 rates should influence policy makers and public health officials to focus on ways to improve mask adherence across the population in order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

192

Humans learn about the world by collectively acquiring information, filtering it, and sharing what we know. Misinformation undermines this process. The repercussions are extensive. Without reliable and accurate sources of information, we cannot hope to halt climate change, make reasoned democratic decisions, or control a global pandemic. Most analyses of misinformation focus on popular and social media, but the scientific enterprise faces a parallel set of problems-from hype and hyperbole to publication bias and citation misdirection, predatory publishing, and filter bubbles. In this perspective, we highlight these parallels and discuss future research directions and interventions.