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  • rmacculloch

Now for some Good News from Prof Dame Sarah Gilbert

At my old college in the UK, one used to have dinner sitting next to often eccentric and rather strange academic types, called "dons". I sometimes wondered what on earth they were up to. On a dark and wintry evening, one of them once told me that he had finally sent his book on the British Empire to the publishers. So I asked him, "When did you start writing it?". Without blinking, he replied, "Oh, 1983". Which at the time was 17 years ago.

It turns out that one of the faculty there now, at Christ Church, Oxford, is Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, who is a Senior Associate Research Fellow. She's the woman who created the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. Today Dame Sarah has been reported as saying that Covid is unlikely to mutate into a much deadlier variant & will eventually just cause the common cold. Speaking at a Royal Society of Medicine seminar, she said viruses tend to "become less virulent as they circulate" through the population & there was "no reason" to think we will have a more virulent version of Sars-CoV-2.

Dame Sarah said: "We already live with four different human coronaviruses that we don't really ever think about very much & eventually Sars-CoV-2 will become one of those", adding, "It's just a question of how long it's going to take to get there & what measures we're going to have to take to manage it in the meantime". I'm no medical expert at all, but coming from the creator of the AstraZeneca vaccine that sounds like some very positive news at last.



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