We thank Mr Peter Seymour of Hertfordshire for today’s inspiring link
There is nothing we admire so much as the ability to communicate complex ideas to intelligent people who aren’t specialists. So that picture framers can understand economics, or economists can understand astrophysics. One master of the art is Stephen Buranyi of Wired. We don’t want to spoil a tour de force article for you, click on the link, it’s a pleasure to read. But we have filleted out the best bits, about Professor Robin Shattock and his team at Imperial College, and their attempts to develop a vaccine based on mRNA which will cure us all of Covid 19.
Firstly Shattock must be pretty bright, you don’t get to be a Professor of Virology at Imperial College otherwise.(Alright , they lost on University Challenge, but they’re still reigning champs) Proof of this is that way back in January 2019 he was warning the world of the dangers of an undiscovered disease x which would spread rapidly through the world wreaking untold clinical and economic damage. Sound familiar? The answer he said was to develop a new type of virus based on messenger RNA, which would be far faster to develop and manufacture than traditional sorts of vaccines.
What you are about to read is a fast and enjoyable romp through the very latest in microbiology, molecular genetics, finance, corporations and academe. The kind of stuff where intelligent people of all sorts are crafting the future, and where your average LSS fan likes to be, we hope. If you don’t, there is always Heat, Best of British Nostalgia and the Sun, and you’re welcome. There’s even a good section on manufacturing, answering a question first posed here on LSS on July 28.
But before we go, we hear the cries of those who will try to bash Big Pharma, whatever that is, as the cause of all this mess because “they failed to see the crisis coming and to develop a vaccine”. Rubbish. Pharmaceutical companies are profit making entities, whose whole commercial and legal structure would collapse if they were forced to devote more than a tiny fraction of their resources to basic research. We think that they do a good job on the whole, with the remit nations have given them. The hard truth is that if you want more research and blue skies thinking, you need to pump a lot more into Universities and Education. More taxes, anyone?
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