COV-SARS2 may ave been in humans for a long time...perhaps years

…before it finally acquired all the traits needed to cause this pandemic.

The long time spent in human to human transmission without causing much of an issue to its hosts would give the virus ample time for natural selection to work and the more virulent, lethal strain arise. It is also consistent with how other coronaviruses that bother humans have arisen.

So goes one of the hypotheses espoused in this article in Nature Medicine…which might provide another explanation why it arose in Wuhan besides a nefarious one where it came from a lab or from the wet market despite no bats being sold there.

If this hypothesis is true, we’ll never know where the animal to human jump took place, or whether there were several such jumps.

Interesting. Thanks.

I just read in the paper today that one tiger in a NY zoo is confirmed to have COVID-19 and three other tigers and three lions exhibiting symptoms were not tested, but are assumed to also be infected. They apparently contracted it from a handler who is a confirmed case. However, the symptoms in all of the cats are quite mild. But it does provide an opportunity to see how the virus acts in other species.


They had testing kits available for zoo animals.

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I can see why some people are upset at that, but if the virus can go back into animals from humans, that is an important thing to know.

That’s when a lot of sometimes very unpleasant mutations can happen.

It’ll be important to know who did the testing, how it was done, and whether or not a human had to forgo testing in favor of a caged animal.

Good to know it can transfer to other mammals though. I’ll be keeping a closer eye on my animals.

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Should we kill all the animals now? Before it’s too late I mean.

I’d really like to beat Korea at something.

For me it keeps coming back to this. IMO that’s where real dangers come from. But again what do I know.



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Viruses mutate and evolve? That is news.

When they mix between species we get all sorts of recombinations…some of which might be nasty.

Great post. Outstanding contribution.

I sure would not want to be the one who had to stick the swab up the tiger’s nose and swish it around for ten seconds. :wink:


I’m trying to come up with a good Tiger King reference, and it’s not coming to me…

Yes, it is possible that the virus existed undetected for years in humans and suddenly explosively spread in the city of Wuhan. It is also possible that a secret herd of unicorns is the source.

I have seen no evidence for either scenario.

We’re all waiting…

I was thinking the same. Maybe it didn’t go so well with Nadia and that’s why the other 6 weren’t tested.

It’s called mutation/selection. That is a thing.

Unicorns are not.

Fascinating article. The viruses and bacteria will be here long after we’re gone, that’s for sure. And the meek shall inherit the Earth.