The truth about coronavirus mutations and more COVID-19 updates

A roundup of the top stories you may have missed this week.

The coronavirus crisis is unique. Addressing it will require new ideas, new perspectives, and new voices. That’s our mission at Freethink.

This week, we’re highlighting some of the most interesting perspectives and opinions about the fight against COVID-19.

Here are our must reads for this week.

1. What the Porn Industry Has to Teach Us in the COVID-19 Era

Two decades ago, the mainstream pornography industry developed and implemented a set of testing protocols for performers to prevent the spread of HIV. Now, some health experts are looking to it as a blueprint for the future of COVID-19 testing, according to STAT.

2. The Problem With Stories About Dangerous Coronavirus Mutations

A newly released — and not yet peer-reviewed — paper claims that the coronavirus has mutated in a way that makes it more transmissible. The Atlantic talked to a handful of experts who say we shouldn’t take that claim at face value.

3. Mark Cuban Hired Secret Shoppers to Scope Out Reopened Stores in Texas

Texas has given restaurants and retailers the go-ahead to reopen so long as they follow strict safety standards. Billionaire Mark Cuban sent secret shoppers to hundreds of locations in Dallas to see if they were abiding by the rules — and then shared the findings on his blog.

4. Can Kids Transmit the Virus?

Economist and author Emily Oster dug into the latest research on the ability of children to catch and spread the coronavirus. She then summarized it all in a newsletter — read it if you’re still wondering whether you should plan for your kids to spend the entire summer at home.

5. In a Town Split by a Border, Virus Rules Vary From Door to Door

Baarle-Hertog, in Belgium, and Baarle-Nassau, in the Netherlands, are essentially two towns from two countries sharing the same physical space. This New York Times report digs into what that means for residents trying to navigate the nations’ very different coronavirus response efforts.

Did we leave something off this list? We want to hear about what you’re reading and any interesting ideas you’d like us to cover. Drop us a line at [email protected].

Nasal COVID-19 vaccine outperforms mRNA shots in new study
A live attenuated vaccine for COVID-19 that delivered via a nasal spray outperformed several shots in a preclinical study.
Viruses cause 200+ diseases. This one drug may be able to treat them all.
New Zealand-based startup Kimer Med wants to create an antiviral that would be effective against many known viruses — and unknown.
Inhaling this powder shields lungs from infection
An inhalable powder that acts as an “invisible mask” for the lungs could potentially help end the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yale researchers have found a way to spot new viruses
By screening negative nasal swabs for a specific antiviral protein, a Yale team believes we may be able to find hidden viruses before they emerge.
First-of-its-kind nasal vaccine for COVID-19 deployed in India
India has begun deploying a nasal vaccine for COVID-19 that may be able to prevent infections, not just limit their severity.
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