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時間:2022-08-16 來源:本站 點擊:258次

WHO warns of 'very high' Omicron risk as COVID******


A sign advises people to wear a mask and stand 2 meters apart as travelers make their way through Miami International Airport on December 28 in Miami, Florida.。

Omicron still poses a "very high" risk and could overwhelm health care systems, the WHO warned on Wednesday, as the highly transmissible coronavirus variant fuelled record outbreaks in many countries.。

Case numbers have shot up 11 percent globally in the last week, forcing governments from China to Germany and France to find a difficult balance between anti-virus restrictions and the need to keep economies and societies open.。

The Netherlands and Switzerland said Omicron had become the dominant strain in their countries, and while some studies suggested it causes milder COVID-19, the World Health Organization urged caution.。

"The overall risk related to the new variant of concern Omicron remains very high," the UN health agency said in its COVID-19 weekly epidemiological update.。

"Consistent evidence shows that the Omicron variant has a growth advantage over the Delta variant with a doubling time of two to three days."

The WHO said early data from Britain, South Africa, and Denmark – which currently has the world's highest rate of infection per person – suggested there was a reduced risk of hospitalization for Omicron compared with Delta.。

But it added that further data was needed to understand Omicron's severity.。

And despite those studies, Omicron's rapid growth "will still result in large numbers of hospitalizations, particularly amongst unvaccinated groups, and cause widespread disruption to health systems and other critical services", warned WHO Europe's COVID Incident Manager Catherine Smallwood.。

Painful restrictions。

Europe was again one of the hotspots for the pandemic, which is known to have claimed more than 5.4 million lives around the world.。

France, Britain, Greece and Portugal all reported record daily case numbers on Tuesday. France reported almost 180,000 infections over 24 hours.。

To hold back the tide, many nations on the continent have brought back curbs with heavy economic and social consequences.。

Travel chaos。

The COVID spikes around the world have caused severe disruptions to travel over the holidays, with thousands of flights canceled worldwide.。

They are also threatening sports events again.。

England's top football league is grappling with record cases, while China has imposed strict lockdowns on millions of people to control the spread of the Delta variant ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics.。

Mexico City's mayor on Tuesday canceled the capital's massive New Year's Eve celebrations as a preventative measure after a rise in COVID-19 cases.。

The top American sports leagues have also been hit, as the United States battles a surge fuelled by Omicron, as well as large pockets of unvaccinated people and a lack of access to quick and easy testing.。

The US Centers for Disease Control has halved the isolation period for asymptomatic cases to try and limit disruptions and mass labor shortages.。

President Joe Biden said the United States was generally well prepared, though some hospitals could be "overrun."

Brazil's Gremio relegated for third time in history******

RIO DE JANEIRO, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- Gremio have been relegated for the third time in their history despite a 4-3 home win over champions Atletico Mineiro on the final day of Brazil's Serie A season on Thursday.。

Juventude's 1-0 win over Corinthians sealed Gremio's fate, just four years after the Porto Alegre club won the Copa Libertadores -- South America's premier club competition.。

"Our obligation is to apologize, recognize mistakes and work with humility and energy to get back on course and face the challenges that 2022 presents," Gremio said in an open letter to fans published on social media.。

"We are fully aware of what awaits us. Rest assured that all measures will be taken, without exception," the letter added.。

Gremio are one of Brazil's most successful sides, having won the Serie A title twice and the Copa Libertadores trophy on three occasions. The club had previously only been relegated in 1991 and 2004.。

The last day of the season also confirmed that there will be three Brazilian teams making their debut in the Copa Libertadores next year: Fortaleza, Bragantino and America Mineiro.。

Brazil's other representatives in the continental tournament will be Atletico Mineiro, Flamengo, Palmeiras, Corinthians, Fluminense and Athletico Paranaense. Enditem。

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First woman cured of HIV after stem cell transplant******

A US patient with leukemia hasbecome the first woman and the third person to date to be curedof HIV after receiving a stem cell transplant from a donor whowas naturally resistant to the virus that causes AIDS,researchers reported on Tuesday.

The case of a middle-aged woman of mixed races, presented atthe Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections inDenver, is also the first involving umbilical cord blood, anewer approach that may make the treatment available to morepeople.

Since receiving the cord blood to treat her acute myeloidleukemia – a cancer that starts in blood-forming cells in thebone marrow – the woman has been in remission and free of thevirus for 14 months, without the need for potent HIV treatmentsknown as antiretroviral therapy.

The two prior cases occurred in males – one white and oneLatino – who had received adult stem cells, which are morefrequently used in bone marrow transplants.

"This is now the third report of a cure in this setting, andthe first in a woman living with HIV," Sharon Lewin,president-elect of the International AIDS Society, said in astatement.

The case is part of a larger US-backed study led by Dr Yvonne Bryson of the University of California Los Angeles(UCLA), and Dr Deborah Persaud of Johns Hopkins University inBaltimore. It aims to follow 25 people with HIV who undergo atransplant with stem cells taken from umbilical cord blood forthe treatment of cancer and other serious conditions.

Patients in the trial first undergo chemotherapy to kill offthe cancerous immune cells. Doctors then transplant stem cellsfrom individuals with a specific genetic mutation in which theylack receptors used by the virus to infect cells.

Scientists believe these individuals then develop an immunesystem resistant to HIV.

Lewin said bone marrow transplants are not a viable strategyto cure most people living with HIV. But the report "confirmsthat a cure for HIV is possible and further strengthens usinggene therapy as a viable strategy for an HIV cure," she said.

The study suggests that an important element to the successis the transplantation of HIV-resistant cells. Previously,scientists believed that a common stem cell transplant sideeffect called graft-vs-host disease, in which the donorimmune system attacks the recipient's immune system, played arole in a possible cure.

"Taken together, these three cases of a cure post stem celltransplant all help in teasing out the various components of thetransplant that were absolutely key to a cure," Lewin said.

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