vehicles on road between high rise buildings

The Daily Dose: People abandoning NYC in droves. New Yorkers pray they don’t return.

The COVID-19 continues to cause an exodus from New York City for other cities and suburbs. Per Bloomberg, “Residents of New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area have long tolerated eye-watering expenses, cramped apartments and other disadvantages because of the access to more jobs, arts, culture and entertainment. Until the pandemic hit, that is. Now, the experience of being locked down at home and working remotely is driving them to make decisions faster than they otherwise would have, and leave their social and professional circles behind for a better quality of life elsewhere.” What that means is that the cost of living in Gotham will ultimately decrease while retaining all of the benefits since the pandemic won’t last forever. Plus, with all the dead wood cleared, it may result in a return to more exciting times, ie. pre-Disney-fied mind-numbing commercialization. Here’s to hoping they never return.

Germany is the latest country to implement stricter COVID-19 restrictions in the face of significant daily increases in positive cases. Per DW, “The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) reported a record 952 deaths in Germany on Wednesday, the country’s highest daily death toll since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The previous record, set less than a week ago, was 598. Germany also recorded 27,728 new infections as the country entered a stricter lockdown which closed schools and most shops nationwide. One reason for the surge in deaths could be down to delayed reporting of data from earlier in the week from Saxony — one of the worst-hit regions.”

It’s holiday season for many different cultures around the world. That means lots of travel, parties, and family get-together. It also represents a significant chance of superspreader events. Per Nature, “As worldwide coronavirus cases continue to surge, countries are grappling with how to manage big public holidays such as Christmas and Lunar New Year, which researchers are warning could become superspreader events. ‘We’re already at a high level of community spread, and we’re about to see a lot of people travelling and gathering indoors,’ says Julia Marcus, an infectious-disease epidemiologist at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts. ‘It’s hard to see any way that this is going to go well.’” Not mincing words is she?

The Associated Press assembled a special feature documenting the spread of COVID-19 across the globe. It’s still stunning to see the number of infections and deaths caused by the pandemic. The notion of getting vaccinated has never sounded better.

There are significant concerns regarding loss of muscle mass while in low and zero-gravity space. In the past, researchers have focused on physical exercise as a way of preventing atrophy. A Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study is exploring a new approach. “We investigated the effects of targeting the signaling pathway mediated by the secreted signaling molecules, myostatin and activin A, in mice sent to the International Space Station. We show that targeting this signaling pathway has significant beneficial effects in protecting against both muscle and bone loss in microgravity, suggesting that this strategy may be effective in preventing or treating muscle and bone loss not only in astronauts on prolonged missions but also in people with disuse atrophy on Earth, such as in older adults or in individuals who are bedridden or wheelchair-bound from illness.”

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