Can nitric oxide and carbon monoxide production exert protective effects in the setting of COVID-19 infection?

During the early months of the pandemic, spurious claims about sunlight’s ability to kill the novel coronavirus abounded. Many advocated for the use of sunlight as a disinfectant while the President of the United States waxed on about a hypothetical therapy that “brought the light inside the body.”

Unfortunately, Dr. Mark Pimental and his team at Cedars-Sinai Hospital seemed all too eager to profit from these unsubstantiated claims by repurposing their “Healight” device, a UVA light-emitting catheter. Hospitals do indeed use ultraviolet light to sterilize surfaces, but this form of UV light is dangerous to humans.

Sunlight that reaches the…


Healthy human gut microbial communities exhibit differences in composition but share many of the same functions

The gut microbiota impact digestion and interface with the host immune system.
The gut microbiota impact digestion and interface with the host immune system.

Universal interest in human-associated microbial communities in recent decades has galvanized both citizens and researchers alike to probe, analyze, and perhaps even biohack our bugs in an effort to potentially improve quality of life and ameliorate disease. Many commercial companies offer a glimpse into the inner workings of your microbial inhabitants through the use of at-home testing kits while countless others present opportunities to shift the microbial balance in one’s favor through the use of probiotics, prebiotics, synbiotics, phages, helminths, quorum sensing inhibitors, immune modulators, skin creams, body washes, vaginal suppositories, and more. …


How the hologenome shapes our understanding of human evolution

To know the self is impossible as the self is constantly changing, growing, and adapting. To paraphrase Heisenberg, we cannot simultaneously know our position and direction. Perhaps that is the paradox in the command from the Oracle at Delphi. To know thyself is to know that the self is unknowable.

We think that we exist as individuals. Singular beings. A drop in the ocean. A pixel on a screen. A speck of dust suspended in a sunbeam. But we are the ocean. We are the screen. We are the personification of the universe perceiving itself. The focus on knowing the…


Loved your take on a personal habit that most of us seldom consider in the context of climate change. Really informative and engaging read!


I've been a practicing minimalist for several years now and find that decluttering helps not only with organization but also makes space for the projects you value. Huge fan of the methods Marie Kondo and the Home Edit describe too!


Tax season is nearly upon us in the United States. Although the IRS has extended the deadline to file individual federal taxes to May 17th, some Americans may still need to file taxes by April 15th. The exclusion applies to 2021 quarterly estimated tax payments and primarily affects freelancers, gig workers, self-employed individuals, some small business owners, and many retirees.

Because of winter storms, residents of Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana have until June 15th to file their federal return. All taxpayers who file an extension still have an October 15th deadline.

The IRS is currently dealing with a considerable backlog…


A musical retelling of a literary classic

Over Mother’s Day weekend in 2015, my family and I had the privilege of seeing John Adams conduct the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in a work of his own composition, Scheherazade.2. I was especially excited to hear Adams’ re-imagination of the Arabian Nights folktales since I had decided to compare The Thousand and One Nights to Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade for my final term paper in comparative literature earlier that semester.

Symphonies, Science, and Software Updates

Scientists sometimes explain the idea of epigenetic regulation of gene expression using a symphony orchestra as an analogy in which the specific notes of the symphony are akin to the genome, or…


POETRY/ NATURE/ STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS

Dear Crestfallen Leaf,
I love your poetry beyond belief
Your words exude love, comfort, sweet relief
For this young old soul now battling disease
Awaiting Mother Mary’s soft whisper, “Let It Be”
Bringing a whole new meaning to carpe diem, seize.

Running down the dream, only to find
Karma’s a trip, with no travel agent in mind
And this, my desperate attempt to answer you in kind.
Maybe just one last trip, for old times’ sake
Niagara, Superior, Victoria Lake
“But the sea is wide and I cannot swim over
Nor have I the wings to fly.”

Still might I…


Very relatable story. Because of various health issues, I was quarantining long before the pandemic began. Mid-2019, I had just begun to regain some function, only to be hit with COVID in April 2020. The past 12 months have been a series of hospitalizations for complications like hypoxia, cardiomyopathy, hydronephrosis, and gastrointestinal obstruction that required surgery. Can't seem to catch a break...


COVID-19 / MEDICINE / HEALTH

In short, it depends, really.

Even before the results of the U.K. RECOVERY trial on dexamethasone were published, researchers and doctors, including a few in the United States, had already been advocating for steroid use in COVID-19 treatment. Two months into my own battle with COVID-19, I was also prescribed a short, high-dose course of prednisone, which temporarily ameliorated my breathing distress enough to allow me to pitch the following story idea:

Nita Jain

Researcher of microbes, minimalist, music addict, trivia buff | Prefer acoustic to electric | Consilience is my life philosophy | humanmicrobes.substack.com

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