SARS CoV-2 Virus in Perspective

SARS CoV-2 Virus in Perspective

The coronavirus image courtesy of:Image source: F.A. Murphy and S. Whitfield, CDC
Virus Image

We have all been affected by the decisions and actions by governments to the CoV-2 virus pandemic
In this essay I have analysed deaths in the UK with respect to, how weather affects: all causes deaths, respiratory deaths, and SARS CoV-2 deaths. I then put these three categories into perspective.

Weekly data for All Causes, Respiratory and SARS CoV-2 covers the last 11 years obtained from the Office of National Statistics (ONS)
UK Deaths

Daily data of CoV-2 is from Worldometer

And both daily and weekly weather data from Weather Research

UK All Causes of Death Winter & Summer

Fig 1 UK All causes of deaths in the UK, winter, and summer
Over the last 10 years there have been 364,483 more winter deaths than summer deaths. The average number of deaths from all causes in the UK is 10,033 per week.

Fig 2 UK All Causes of Winter Deaths in the UK vs Temperature max
Figure 2 shows more deaths with lower temperatures with a correlation of =0.56

Fig 3 UK All causes of Summer Deaths vs Temperature max
Summer deaths as shown in figure 3 shows many more deaths with lower temperatures with a correlation -0.37
N. B. There are problems with weekly averages which does not reflect the true correlation between death rates and weather parameters.

All Causes of Death Vs Temperature and Sunshine

Fig 4 UK All Causes of Deaths in the UK vs temperature max
Figure 4 shows many more deaths in winter than deaths in summer with a correlation of -0.54

Fig 5 UK All Causes of Deaths in the UK vs sunshine hours
Fig 5 show many less deaths in summer with increased hours of sunshine, with a correlation of -0.28.
N. B. Again the problems with weekly averages does not show the true correlation between death rates and weather parameters.

"Respiratory deaths vs Temperature and Sunshine"

Fig 6 shows Respiratory deaths vs Temperature max
Respiratory deaths have large correlation with temperature of -0.70. The 10-year average number of Respiratory deaths is 1,357 per week.

Fig 7 shows Respiratory deaths vs Sunshine hours
Respiratory deaths alone show a correlation of -0.44 with sunshine hours. With larger number of deaths when sunshine is less.

Fig 8 shows Respiratory + CoV-2 deaths vs temperature max
As CoV-2 deaths were only recorded from 06Mar2020 and the peak was in April it has distorted the correlation down to =0.17. The 10-years average number of respiratory + CoV-2 deaths was 1451 deaths per week.

10 years of Troughs & Peaks; All Causes, Respiratory and Respiratory+CoV-2

Fig 9 shows the Troughs and Peaks dates and All Cause Deaths *to 20Nov2020

Fig 10 shows the Troughs and Peaks Dates and Respiratory Deaths *to 20Nov2020

Fig 11 shows the troughs and peaks dates and respiratory + CoV-2 Deaths *to 20Nov2020

For the last 10 years, with a few exceptions the troughs of all causes and respiratory deaths are around the end of August. Whilst peak dates for all causes and respiratory deaths is around the first and second week of January. The major exception was CoV-2 which peaked in the middle of April.

SARS CoV-2 2020

Fig 12 Shows daily CoV-2 deaths vs UK average daily sunshine hours

Figure 12 shows a very good example of a Gompertz curve found in many virus epi/pandemics. The up and downs after the peak of the curve I believe is due to reporting, when weekend reporting is sporadic and then adjusted on the Monday following. Because of this I used a 7-day moving average. This example shows how increased sunshine hours (>UV) greatly reduces the death rates. The rise at the back end of the year is, I suggest, "the next" years increases in respiratory winter deaths and people still have fragments of the CoV-2 RNA. Which enhances the question died FROM or died WITH CoV-2.

Fig 13 UK daily CoV-2 deaths vs UK average daily Temperature max

Fig 14 UK daily CoV-2 deaths vs UK average daily mean Relative Humidity

Figures 13 & 14 show how CoV-2 reacts to other weather parameters, Temperature (maximum) and Relative Humidity.

^CoV-2 like many other viruses do not like increased UV radiation, higher temperatures, and lower Relative Humidity.
UV radiation degrades the potency of viruses such as influenza, rhinovirus and other SARS viruses including CoV-2^

Conclusions and Thoughts:

Deaths from viruses such as influenza, rhinovirus (common cold) and SARS viruses, including C0V-2, are significantly affected by the weather, mainly sunshine (UV radiation) and temperature.

There is a strong correlation of 0.74 between all causes of death and respiratory deaths and an even higher correlation of 0.91 between respiratory + CoV-2 and all causes of death.

There are significantly more deaths in winter than in summer, with 364,483 higher winter deaths for the last 10 years, or an average of 36,448 more winter deaths per year.

The 2010-2019 average weekly for all causes of death was 9,894; for respiratory deaths was 1,373

In 2020 (up to 11Dec) all causes average was 11,581 (10,252 in 2015) equating to 1,329 more deaths per week than 2015.
In 2020 (up yo 11Dec) respiratory + CoV-2 deaths was 2,349 (1,469 in 2015) equating to 880 more deaths per week than 2015 influenza. We also have to consider that the UK population has increased from 64.8 million in 2015 to 68.0 million in 2020 and extra 3.2 million people..

Although correlation do not appear to be very strong between weather parameters and deaths this is due to averaging weekly death data and UK average weather data.

From my research on the weather effect on living organisms, I suggest UV radiation has a major impact on the potency of airborne viruses. Each individual airborne virus has its own associated array of genes. A specific set of these associated genes are switched on or off by UV or IR radiation.

I also suggest CoV-2 was in the population well before the testing started w/c 06Mar2020. This is back up by my experience. We visited Lisbon for a long weekend break in the middle of December 2019. Ten days after our return my partner went down with a hacking cough, feeling very lethargic and ended up with a chest infection. After visiting the doctor, she was treated with a course of antibiotics. She recovered after this treatment.

On the 30Dec2019, I also developed a hacking cough, for the next 5 days I was bed ridden with continued hacking cough, chronic sweating, and interspersed with uncontrollable shivering. Then a chest infection developed. I also went to visit the doctor, who also prescribed a course of antibiotics. I was also sent for an x-ray (local hospital) of my chest. Four hours later I received a phone call from my doctor telling me I had to go to the nearest major hospital, RUH Bath, for a CT scan, he thought I had lung cancer.

To cut a long story short, I had the CT scan which showed extensive airspace opacification, with ground glass like opacification and very small nodules. After 10 days the chest problems did not dissipate and was given a stronger more targeted course of antibiotic by another. Another 10 days and I was back to normal health. I was told later that it was highly suggestive I had contracted COVID-19.

During our incubation period we had been out for a few meals, to the local pub, normal Christmas shopping trips, a Christmas market and we had relations stay with us over Christmas. We did have to cancel our New Year celebrations in a hotel with six friends. How many people did we infect, hundreds if not thousands I suspect.