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TWiV 188 Letters

Judi writes:

To our TWIV leaders!

If you have a mac with Apps, please go to the app store and download cell images.... I think you'll have a great time going through them.

One other thing - I listened to your show on science reform with interest but I have one request. Please do not EVER apologize for having the passion and the integrity to follow your avocation of science - or writing - or fishing....

So many of our students are lost because they do not see people who have that sort of devotion and caring about their career work and our kids NEED you to be role models. You all do the TWIVs out of love of the subject, you take thoughtful and justified stands on controversial issues, and you are willing to share yourselves ( and somewhat twisted humors) with your audience. In short, you are good people who care about your work and your world.

Please don't stop - you are allowed to toot your own horns about this. As they say "it ain't boasting if it's true!"

Judi the high school teacher

PS thanks for my professional development.

Katharina writes:

I know that TWiV 166 was specific to a (possible) therapeutic agent against HCV, but I was wondering what difficulties are preventing the development of a viable HCV vaccine -- do you think that the determination of the transmitted/founder HCV viral sequence is necessary for vaccine development or are there other factors in HCV vaccine development that need to be worked out as well?

Ming Ye writes:


In TWiV 177, when talking about the Schmallenberg virus, it was mentioned that the presence of virus in livestock has not affected livestock consumption and that farmers do not need to notify authorities if a deformed animal (possibly as a result of the virus) is born. This strikes me as a risky policy as we do not know if the virus would mutate and be transmitted to humans. Therefore, I was wondering when and how the governments decide on policies to regulate the sale of livestock when an unknown virus is involved?

Katherine writes:

I just had one question in response to Twiv 173 in regards to the influenza discovered in bats in Guatemala: What are the next steps for monitoring the spread and mutations of this virus? Does the CDC really have enough funding and manpower to follow-up and monitor every new virus that is discovered?


cm writes:

I have heard strong statements about the importance of publication, how “science only moves by publication” and how the scientists have to publish everything, and I can’t help but to agree that it’s very true.

My thoughts are with Wendy’s comment on the censorship that it can possibly block other bright minds from accessing the information which can be detrimental to scientific research progress and discovery.

But as I was reading comments on the TwiV video, I strongly received the impression that such opposition to publishing still exist. Besides all the political pressure that may be present, there was a concern about virulent virus information falling into the wrong hands, like terrorists for example. Are they speaking from previous experiences?

As an undergraduate student just touching upon this subject, I don’t think I know about enough history of virology hence made me wonder.

Was there such an instance where such publication and disclosure of information went terribly wrong or misused? Or is this from too much of Hollywood movies?


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