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Should we be afraid of COVID-19 vaccines?

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Jhave received several questions on this topic over the past week. Now that vaccination is fast approaching, even due to start next week, all this is clearly taking a more concrete turn for everyone. I was even sent a text written by a retired Quebec doctor who wondered why we opted for “RNA vaccines” when there were older and better proven technologies. So let’s see.

“Classic” vaccines consist of presenting so-called “attenuated” (made less virulent) or downright “dead” viruses, or even bits of virus to the immune system. This then learns to make antibodies, proteins that bind to the microbes of the vaccine to deactivate them. But the three vaccines that have completed clinical trials so far take a different “path” which, admittedly, is new and has not been tested as much as the “classic” vaccines.

The vaccine developed by pharmaceutical AstraZeneca and Oxford University uses a harmless virus (an adenovirus found in chimpanzees) to deliver part of the DNA of COVID-19, specifically a gene, into our cells virus that contains the “recipe” for a “spike protein” – a kind of spike on the surface of the virus that is used as a key to enter and replicate in our cells. Once the gene is in a cell, it will start to produce the viral protein, and this is what will trigger the immune system’s response. In short, instead of producing viruses (or pieces of) and injecting them, we make our cells do the work.

The other two vaccines, those from the companies Pfizer / BioNTech (which Health Canada approved this week) and Moderna, consist of injecting “messenger RNA” (mRNA), which is a kind of genetic material different from DNA but that everyone has too. And the principle remains essentially the same: this mRNA contains the “recipe” for the spicule, and it is our own cells that make the viral protein.

This is also the advantage of these “vaccine platforms”, as they are called: it avoids having to “cultivate” viruses, a process that is tedious and expensive, which allows vaccines to be produced much more quickly. .

Now, it’s true that the Wikipedia page on RNA vaccines says that when RNA gets directly into the blood, it causes it to clot – and it’s not just Wiki saying that, it’s the results. of a study. But it would be wrong to deduce from this that pharmaceuticals have found the solution to this problem in just a few months: the study cited by Wiki does not date from this year, but from 2007. And over the past 13 years, there were many, a lot research on mRNA vaccines.

On coagulation itself, the 2007 study mentioned that it was “naked” strands of RNA that caused clots. However, it is precisely not “naked” mRNA that is injected into these two vaccines, because that simply would not work. As we can read in a review of the scientific literature published in 2018 in the scholarly journal Nature Reviews – Drug Discoveries, RNA degrades very quickly when it is found on its own in the blood, so much so that in the first prototypes of RNA vaccines, mRNA did not have time to reach our cells, which could not therefore not express the viral protein. Much of the research in recent years has been to find some sort of “capsule” or transporter that allows mRNA to reach its destination. So the results of the 2007 coagulation study do not really apply to the vaccines developed this year.

Another problem that has arisen along the way is that RNA causes inflammation when it is in the blood, we read in another review of the literature published in 2019 in the medical journal. Vaccines. But then again, solutions were found and this article indicated that the results of animal testing and some human testing were “encouraging”.

That being said, these are still very new technologies: until this fall, no mRNA vaccine had ever been tested on large groups of people, let alone almost entire populations. The two literary reviews I am quoting here also warned that we should keep a close eye on a certain number of points, in particular this history of coagulation. But their authors did not have data from the three major clinical trials on COVID vaccines. These, it must be said, are very reassuring about “side effects”.

Almost 10,000 people received the AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine, 15,000 received the Moderna vaccine, and Pfizer / BioNTech administered its vaccine to nearly 22,000 people. And the “side effects” seen on all of these people are very much in line with those of the “old” vaccines, that is, they are on the whole very mild and very predictable – for example: pain where you got stung, redness around the injection site, etc.

And that’s probably not very surprising, mind you. As we could read last September in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the way RNA or DNA vaccines work is not that different from some classic vaccines, basically, because when you inject someone with an attenuated virus, the virus enters their cells and replicates there. – which implies that our cells will produce viral proteins, a bit like with mRNA / DNA vaccines.

None of this, if it should be specified, constitutes a guarantee of absolute safety. It remains possible that extremely rare side effects, occurring for example 1 time in 100,000 or 1,000,000, will eventually be discovered when millions of people have been vaccinated. In addition, we do not yet have data on a long period (only two or three months for the majority of vaccinated): perhaps other side effects will appear later in some people. Perhaps…

We’ll see. But for now, all the data (and we are starting to have a large sample anyway) indicate that these vaccines are as safe as the others, that is to say extremely. It is not for nothing that the New England Journal of Medicine spoke last week, in an editorial, of a “triumph” of science …

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18,000 people evacuated due to floods in Australia

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The situation is worsening due to the heavy rains on the east coast of Australia. Nearly 18,000 people stranded in floods in New South Wales have been evacuated and taken to safer places.

In the state capital Sydney and southeastern Queensland, the water level of rivers and dams has increased.

Officials have said that ‘this situation created for the first time in 50 years’ can persist for several weeks. The administration has asked people to take precautions.

The country’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison has offered financial assistance to those forced to leave home.

New South Wales premier Gladie Berejiklian told that no one has lost her life till late Monday. He said that “like circumstances, it is like a miracle”.

But there has been a huge loss in the affected areas. 25 million Australians live in these areas.

Berejiklian said that many of the communities that had been affected by the floods were affected by wildfires and drought in the previous summer.

He said, “I don’t know that in such a short time between an epidemic in the history of the state, such bad weather conditions have been created.”

Emergency services conducted at least 750 rescue operations. Which includes evacuating people trapped in cars. A family stranded in the flood was evacuated with the help of a helicopter.

Rescuers also rescued a family trapped with a newborn baby in a house off the western side of Sydney.

Australia’s Meteorological Department says that rainfall up to 900 mm in some areas is ‘extraordinary’.

Most concern was expressed for the lowlands of northern and western Sydney, the NSW Central Coast and the Hawkesbury Valley.

What happened so far?

New South Wales is devastated due to floods. 15 thousand people were evacuated from the state’s Mid-North Coast and 3 thousand people were evacuated from Sydney to safe places.

Roads have been cut due to swollen rivers and about 150 schools had to be closed on Monday.

Many animals have died, in flood affected areas, animals are seen floating in the water and the windows of the houses are full of water.

A young couple had a wedding on Sunday, but they saw their home in Sydney’s north on the same day in floods.

Flights have been canceled due to flooding on the runway of the airport, about 17 km from Sydney.

According to officials, a small tornado occurred in the western part of Sydney on Saturday, causing landslides and damage to homes.

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Germany Top virologist warns COVID rates to spike again

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Berlin: Germany’s top virologist Christian Drosten warns that the situation may once again deteriorate there. He says that once again the impact of the Kovid-19 epidemic in Germany can be seen as Christmas. Let me tell you that Dr. Drostston is one of the few experts in Germany whose words have an impact on the decisions of the government. In the beginning of the Kovid-19 epidemic and later also, the German government took steps to prevent it by taking advice from them. In this context, the importance of his statement has increased significantly.

They even say that the third wave of Kovid-19 is seen in Germany. For this, they have insisted on rapid vaccination. In response to questions raised on the AstraZeneca vaccine, Dr. Drostan has said that the formation of blood clots is a concern among those taking the vaccine, which should be taken seriously.

Doctor Drostan says that the B-117 variant of the Kovid-19 could hit the country hard. It is necessary to rein this soon. Due to this, cases of corona virus infection are increasing rapidly in the country and this can be a alarm bell. According to him, the first case of this variant was encountered in Britain and it was difficult to prevent it. In view of the increasing cases in Germany, he has warned the government that in the wake of the Kovid-19 cases, there may be a Christmas-like situation in the country. According to him, there was a tremendous increase in cases in Germany after Easter last year.

The online edition of the German newspaper Dieche Welle notes that Drosten of Berlin-based Charity University Hospital has played an important role in tracking and tracing cases of Kovid-19 in the past. He has said that cases of this variant of Britain have increased threefold in Germany. He has said on the basis of various research that this new variant of the virus that came from Britain is more dangerous as well as more dangerous. According to the figures of Germany, on Wednesday there are 13435 new cases there and their number has reached 2594764. At the same time 73905 have died in Germany.

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New twist in the case of forced conversion of Hindu girl in Pakistan

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A court in Sindh province in Pakistan has sent a Hindu girl to a child protection center in the case of alleged forcible conversion.

The girl has said in her statement in front of the court that she has changed her religion without any pressure from her will. On the other hand, the girl’s father alleges that some people took her (girl) away, after which she has been forced to convert.

The girl was produced on Wednesday in the court of Civil Judge Munavvar Pirzada of Tangwani, Tehsil, Kashmarkot, North Sindh with police protection from the shelter home, where the court recorded the girl’s statement.

The girl says that she has changed her religion by reaching the Dargah Bharchondi on her own and now her name is Umme Hina. The girl has also said in her statement that there was no pressure on her to change religion.

Advocate Abdul Ghani Bijrani, on behalf of the girl’s parents, requested the court that the girl is a minor. Advocate Abdul Ghani has also requested the court to set up a medical board to find out whether the girl has been raped.

Remember that Sindh is prohibited from marrying under 18 years of age. If someone marries under the age of 18 or helps in getting married, a case can be filed against him.

Advocate Abdul Ghani Bijrani has alleged that the Nikahnama (marriage certificate) is not being presented due to the Sindh Child Marriage Restaurant Act (Prevention of Child Marriage Act). Therefore, they have requested the formation of a medical board.

A written request also states that the matter should be transferred to the Anti-Terrorism Court. According to the lawyer of this case, Abdul Ghani Bijrani, the crime of kidnapping of minors comes under Section 364 of the ATA. Therefore, by including it in the FIR, the case should be conducted in an anti-terrorism court.

The lawyer also said that the girl cannot live with non-maharams (people from whom the curtain is necessary). Therefore, she should be handed over to her parents or she should be transferred to the children’s shelter home, after which the court has ordered the girl to be shifted to Sukkur shelter home.

Advocate Saeed Ahmed Bijrani appeared on behalf of Pir of Bharchondi, who later told reporters that the court met the girl and her parents in private, after which the statement was recorded. He has claimed that the girl said that she wants to go to Pir of Bharondi, so that she can continue her Islamic education.

According to advocate Saeed Ahmed, he has also made the same request that the girl be sent to the Dargah Bharchandi. Because it is an ‘important Islamic institution’. But the court has ordered that the girl will be sent to the child protection center till the police investigation is completed.

‘Kidnapped in white car’

The girl’s father Takht Mal had lodged an FIR with the Tangwani police station that at 4 pm on March 9, a white colored car stopped outside his house, out of which five others including Mushtaq, Bhoral came out. He had a pistol and scared everyone so that no one would protest, they would take the girl and marry her to Mushtaq.

According to the FIR, Mushtaq “grabbed the 13-year-old girl by her arm and took her along and rode in the car and left”. The father suspects that his daughter has been kidnapped for marriage.

After this case, a video went viral on social media. In which the Pir of Dargah Bharchandi is sitting on the bed and the girl is sitting on the ground and people are standing around, all of whom are men. Pir recites the verse and the girl repeats them in a slow voice, then Pir rotates the note over the girl and hands it to her disciples.

The girl was produced in court on Tuesday along with Pir’s supporters of Bharchandi without the knowledge of her parents. Due to the absence of the plaintiff’s parents, the court adjourned the hearing till Wednesday.

The girl was kept in a decaying safe house. Where the video of the presence of devotees of Dargah Bharchandi and bringing food also went viral on social media. According to reports, when the girl’s father and mother went there to meet, they were allegedly not allowed to meet.

These videos are being severely criticized. Pakistan People’s Party leader Sukhdev said that the girl has been forced to convert. She further said that she is personally looking into the matter and is in touch with Shehla Raza, Minister of State in the Ministry of Women Development.

Apart from the Hindu community in Kandkot, political parties have also protested against the alleged abduction and conversion of the girl.

After the debate on social media and news in the media, the incident of fire in the girl’s house has also come to light three days ago. Speaking to the BBC, the girl’s cousin Shehzad alleged that around four o’clock in the night, four people came, threatening the girl’s father to keep quiet and not to contact the media.

According to Shahzad, he set fire to the dry grass kept there, due to which the house was also engulfed in flames. According to Shahzad, this was his uncle’s only home, which was rented.

According to Shahzad, his uncle lives by selling tea biscuits. SSP Amjad Sheikh told the BBC that the arson claim is not true. According to him, the digchi was kept on fire. Due to which some things were burnt due to fire and now a police post has also been built there. Shahzad said that after this incident a police post was established there.

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