The Daily Dose: India clamps down on exports of vaccines made in the country; COVID-19 guidance still unclear.

The horse riding and the technology involved in performing the task represents major milestones in human history. A new study makes an important contribution into our understanding of the history of horse riding. According to a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, “Here we present a detailed osteological study of eight horse skeletons dated to ca. 350 BCE from the sites of Shirenzigou and Xigou in Xinjiang, northwest China, prior to the formalization of Silk Road trade across this key region. Our analyses reveal characteristic osteological changes associated with equestrian practices on all specimens. Alongside other relevant archaeological evidence, these data provide direct evidence for mounted horseback riding, horse equipment, and mounted archery in northwest China by the late first millennium BCE. Most importantly, our results suggest that this region may have played a crucial role in the spread of equestrian technologies from the Eurasian interior to the settled civilizations of early China, where horses facilitated the rise of the first united Chinese empires and the emergence of transcontinental trade networks.” https://bit.ly/3m6Vz61


Medical nationalism of all sorts continues to rear it’s miserable head. Once again, the effects will be nothing short of catastrophic. Per Reuters, “India, the world’s biggest vaccine maker, put a temporary hold on exports of AstraZeneca’s vaccine being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII), as officials focus on meeting rising domestic demand. The Serum Institute was due to deliver 90 million vaccine doses to COVAX over March and April and, while it was not immediately clear how many would be diverted for domestic use, programme facilitators warned that shipment delays were inevitable.” Whatever happened to the whole “global effort” thing? https://reut.rs/3m6JQo0


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Problems continue to plague COVID-19 guidance. How to manage indoor spaces has proven particularly problematic. According to Nature, “Bluyssen and others are critical of governments’ failure to provide clear guidance or money for people to make indoor spaces safer. Some scientists say that has left large swathes of the population — from schoolchildren to office workers, restaurant goers and prisoners — at risk of catching COVID-19. Others say that there’s no easy fix, and the precise ventilation or air-purification regimes to make indoor spaces safe are not known. ‘The complexity is not at a level that you can — with a simple set of advice — resolve it,’ says Ehsan Mousavi, a construction engineer at Clemson University in South Carolina, who studies indoor air quality and ventilation in hospitals.” https://go.nature.com/3sxsTWm


The 2015 DNA studies revealed Australasian ancestry in two Indigenous Amazonian groups, the Karitiana and Suruí, based on the DNA of more than 200 living and ancient people. Many bore a signature set of genetic mutations, named the “Y signal” after the Brazilian Tupi word for “ancestor,” ypikuéra. Some scientists speculated the Y signal was already present in some of the earliest South American migrants. Others suggested a later migration of people related to present-day Australasians could have introduced the Y signal into people already living in the Amazon. Science is reporting new findings: “For the first time, scientists identified the Y signal in groups living outside the Amazon—in the Xavánte, who live on the Brazilian plateau in the country’s center, and in Peru’s Chotuna people, who descend from the Mochica civilization that occupied that country’s coast from about 100 C.E. to 800 C.E.” https://bit.ly/3sOgVbf

Thanks for reading. Let’s be careful out there.


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