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29,044 articles from Guardian Unlimited Science

What happens to people's lungs when they get coronavirus?

Respiratory physician John Wilson explains the range of Covid-19 impacts, from no symptoms to severe illness featuring pneumoniaCoronavirus – latest global updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageWhat became known as Covid-19, or the coronavirus, started in late 2019 as a cluster of pneumonia cases with an unknown cause. The cause of the pneumonia was found to be a new virus – severe acute...

China reports zero daily deaths from coronavirus for the first time since January

Milestone comes as nation struggles with ongoing outbreaks, including in Wuhan where dozens of residences have been locked down againCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageChina has reported zero new Covid-19 deaths for the first time since January, despite struggles with ongoing outbreaks including in Wuhan where dozens of residential blocks have been locked down just one...

Life 'hanging by a thread' for Italian cancer patients in coronavirus crisis

Treatment and transplants for some postponed as hospitals are turned over to treat virusCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageSince the coronavirus outbreak hit Italy, Francesca Masi has felt her life has been hanging by a thread. She was diagnosed with myelofibrosis, a rare bone marrow cancer, in 2016 and was due to have a transplant this month, but now fears it will be...

Coronavirus live news: Boris Johnson in intensive care as China records no deaths for first time since January

UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab to lead country through crisis while Johnson in hospital. Follow the latest updates.Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after his condition worsensThe strange lead-up to Boris Johnson’s admission to hospitalGlobal leaders send messages of support to Boris JohnsonAt a glance - latest developmentsUS coronavirus - latestAustralia coronavirus - latestSee all of...

New Zealand health minister demoted after beach visit broke lockdown rules

David Clark called himself an ‘idiot’ for driving his family 20km to the beach on the first weekend of the national stay-at-home measures Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageNew Zealand’s health minister has been demoted after he ignored national lockdown rules and drove his family to a beach 20km from his home.Last week Dr David Clark was photographed going for a...

Trump: I have asked US pharma CEOs to offer Johnson experimental Covid-19 treatments

US president doesn’t name companies or treatments, but says they have arrived in London alreadyCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageDonald Trump has said he asked US pharmaceutical companies working on experimental coronavirus drugs to approach Boris Johnson’s doctors and offer their help, after it emerged that the British prime minister was in intensive care.In an...

School closures have little impact on spread of coronavirus – study

UCL say small benefits should be weighed against profound economic and social costsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageSchool closures are likely to have a relatively small impact on the spread of Covid-19 and should be weighed against their profound economic and social consequences, particularly for the most vulnerable children, according to a UK study.The research, led...


MONDAY 6. APRIL 2020


PM's move to ICU shows he's likely to have severe Covid-19

Boris Johnson likely to receive mechanical ventilation as he’s admitted to intensive careCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageBoris Johnson’s move to the intensive care unit (ICU) of St Thomas’ hospital signals that he has severe Covid-19. Oxygen was available through a mask on the ward he was admitted to on Sunday, but the move to intensive care on Monday strongly...

Lockdown has cut Britain's vibrations, seismologists find

There’s a kind of hush all over the world as the reduction in human activity stops the Earth buzzing so muchCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe dramatic quietening of towns and cities in lockdown Britain has changed the way the Earth moves beneath our feet, scientists say.Seismologists at the British Geological Survey have found that their sensors are twitching less...

Why the UK lacks an adequate testing system | Letters

We would be better placed to respond to the coronavirus outbreak had the Public Health Laboratory Service been maintained, writes Valerie Bevan, while Dr Colin Coles highlights the differences between the NHS and German healthcareCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageMatt Hancock says this country, unlike Germany, does not have the scale to undertake the testing required in...

Don't let free speech be a casualty of coronavirus. We need it more than ever | Cas Mudde

Despots like Hungary’s Viktor Orbán are banning speech to ‘fight’ Covid-19. But more democratic countries are tooCoronavirus – latest US updatesCoronavirus – latest global updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIn times of crisis, liberal democratic institutions and values are vulnerable to authoritarian power grabs, or corona coups, as we are seeing around the world today. One of the...

'Magic toilet' could monitor users' health, say researchers

System of sensors and cameras would turn loo into ‘daily clinic’ and detect problems earlyA smart toilet boasting pressure sensors, artificial intelligence and a camera has been unveiled by researchers who say it could provide a valuable way to keep tabs on our health.The model is the latest version of an idea that has been around for several years: a system that examines our daily movements...

Europe looks past lockdowns as US and Japan brace for coronavirus trauma

Germany believes public life can gradually resume, while Spain and Italy see glimmers of hopeCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageEurope’s governments have begun to look ahead to the post-lockdown phase of their battle against Covid-19 as curves on the continent flatten, while the US braces for “peak death week” and Japan prepares to declare a state of national...

Coronavirus key questions: everything you need to know

From how to tell if you have Covid-19 to how to protect others - our experts answer the questions that really matterCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageWhat is Covid-19 and what are the symptoms?Covid-19 is the illness caused by a novel member of the coronavirus family that has transferred from animals to humans. The most common symptoms are fever, tiredness and a dry...

Luna: A Play About the Moon review – science and stories in cabaret for kids

Available onlineRoustabout Theatre’s encounters with the moon range from gravity-dancing to skits with astronauts and a werewolfCoronavirus and culture - a list of major cancellationsHottest front-room seats: the best theatre and dance to watch onlineIs there a lunar module in your home-schooling schedule? If so, then you may like to try this fun, fact-packed cabaret for kids, which mixes...

A book that changed me: the elusive perfection of For the Time Being | Mark O'Connell

Annie Dillard’s 1975 book taught me, a non-believer, that religion can access deeper truthsAlthough Annie Dillard’s For the Time Being is probably my favourite book by a living writer, I tend not to recommend it to people, for the simple reason that I am not entirely sure what to say about it. On those rare occasions when I have gone out on a limb and recommended it to a person, and that...

Fear, bigotry and misinformation – this reminds me of the 1980s Aids pandemic | Edmund White

I saw the damage Aids did to the gay community, and I live with it myself. Now, at 80, I worry I won’t survive coronavirus• Coronavirus latest updates• See all our coronavirus coverageI am a gay man who lived through the Aids pandemic, so many people have asked me to compare that crisis with the one we now face. The main difference between the two is that Aids at first appeared to afflict...

Coronavirus UK: how many confirmed cases are in your area?

Latest figures from public health authorities on the spread of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom. Find out how many cases have been reported near youCoronavirus - live news updatesFind all our coronavirus coverage hereHow to protect yourself from infectionPlease note: these are government figures on numbers of confirmed cases – some people who report symptoms are not being tested, and are not...

Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should I see a doctor?

What are the symptoms caused by the Covid-19 virus, how does it spread, and should you call a doctor?Find all our coronavirus coverage hereCoronavirus – latest updatesHow to protect yourself and others from infectionIt is caused by a member of the coronavirus family that has never been encountered before. Like other coronaviruses, it has transferred to humans from animals. The World Health...

Boris Johnson can run country from hospital bed, says UK minister

PM kept in overnight after being admitted with persistent coronavirus symptomsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageA senior minister has insisted Boris Johnson is fit enough to lead the country from his hospital bed after he was admitted with persistent coronavirus symptoms.Robert Jenrick, the communities secretary, said Johnson was continuing to run the country from an...

Can you solve it? Double chocolate!

A delicious new puzzle from JapanDouble Choco is a new grid logic puzzle from Japan. Below are three examples, including a toughie which appeared in the 2020 UK puzzle championship last month. Pencil-and-paper puzzles like Double Choco are very absorbing; hopefully they provide a stimulating and escapist activity during these days of quarantine. Continue...

Coronavirus live news: Boris Johnson in hospital as Japan prepares for state of emergency

US faces ‘hardest and saddest week’; South Korea reports fewer than 50 new cases; Bronx Zoo tiger tests positive; Follow the latest updates.Latest developments: at a glanceBoris Johnson admitted to hospital with coronavirusAustralia coronavirus – latestSee all of our coronavirus coverage 6.56am BST After seven months of waiting, Ahmed* had everything ready for his younger brother. Finally,...

Ban wildlife markets to avert pandemics, says UN biodiversity chief

Warning comes as destruction of nature increasingly seen as key driver of zoonotic diseases See all our coronavirus coverageCoronavirus latest: at a glanceThe United Nations’ biodiversity chief has called for a global ban on wildlife markets – such as the one in Wuhan, China, believed to be the starting point of the coronavirus outbreak – to prevent future pandemics.Elizabeth Maruma Mrema,...

The hunt for a coronavirus vaccine | podcast

Scientists in more than 40 labs around the world are working round the clock to develop a Covid-19 vaccine. Despite early success in sequencing the virus’s genome, however, Samanth Subramanian tells Rachel Humphreys we are still some months away from knowing if one can be put into mass productionCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe search is well under way for a...

'Bad news': radiation spikes 16 times above normal after forest fire near Chernobyl

The blaze started on Saturday close to the site of the world’s worst ever nuclear disaster, Ukrainian officials sayUkraine has reported a spike in radiation levels in the restricted zone around Chernobyl, scene of the world’s worst nuclear accident, caused by a forest fire.“There is bad news – radiation is above normal in the fire’s centre,” Yegor Firsov, head of Ukraine’s state...


SUNDAY 5. APRIL 2020


Irish taoiseach Leo Varadkar to work a day a week as a doctor

Fine Gael leader was a junior doctor in Dublin and qualified as a GP in 2010Leo Varadkar is to work one day a week as a doctor to help combat the coronavirus pandemic after reactivating his medical credentials.Ireland’s taoiseach has offered his services to the Health Service Executive (HSE) in areas that are within his competence, a spokesperson for his office said on Sunday. Continue...

Starwatch: the moon at its closest and brightest

On Wednesday we can see the brightest of this spring’s three full moon supermoons.This Wednesday’s full moon is the second of six supermoons that take place this year. A supermoon is defined as a full moon or a new moon that occurs when the moon is within 90% of its closest approach to Earth. This makes a full moon appear about 7% larger and 15% brighter than average. As it moves around its...

Coronavirus 'game changer' testing kits could be unreliable, UK scientists say

Concern continues over whether government’s virus pledges stand up to scrutinyThe huge stock of 17.5m antibody home testing kits ordered by the government after Boris Johnson said they could be a “game changer” could in fact be unreliable, scientists have said, saying that they may fail to detect up to half of coronavirus cases.After the prospect of the pregnancy test-style kits was first...

US surgeon general warns of 'Pearl Harbor moment' as Americans face 'hardest week'

Jerome Adams reaches for second world war imageryNo White House briefing as president tweets insteadCoronavirus – US updatesCoronavirus – global updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThe US surgeon general warned the country on Sunday that it will face a “Pearl Harbor moment” in the next week, with an unprecedented numbers of coronavirus deaths expected coast to coast. Related: Jared...

Ex-astronaut launches training kit for coping with self-isolation

Programme covers conflict resolution, mood management and self-assessment for stressCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coveragePerhaps your flatmate has polished off the last beer in the fridge, diverging tastes in Netflix series have led to simmering tensions, or parental negotiations over home-schooling have descended into hostility.Life in lockdown can fuel family tensions,...

What the 1918 flu pandemic can teach us about coronavirus drug trials | Laura Spinney

In times of crisis, scientists have to make ethical decisions about new treatments – even if the evidence seems shaky • Laura Spinney is the author of Pale Rider: The Spanish Flu of 1918 and How it Changed the World• Coronavirus latest updates• See all our coronavirus coverageSometimes the parallels between this pandemic and previous ones are uncanny.Take hydroxychloroquine, the...

Coronavirus live news: Spain records smallest rate of increase in infections since start of crisis

Spanish PM calls for ‘European solidarity’; Trump tells Americans to expect ‘a lot of death’; Global deaths approach 65,000Latest developments: at a glanceUK coronavirus – latest Coming back to life after lockdown in WuhanFocus turns to US as coronavirus continues to spreadSee all of our coronavirus coverage 1.30pm BST Parisians have been warned not to succumb to the tempting sunny...

What happens to people's lungs when they get coronavirus?

Respiratory physician John Wilson explains the range of Covid-19 impacts, from no symptoms to severe illness featuring pneumoniaCoronavirus – latest global updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageWhat became known as Covid-19, or the coronavirus, started in late 2019 as a cluster of pneumonia cases with an unknown cause. The cause of the pneumonia was found to be a new virus – severe acute...

Have I already had coronavirus? How would I know and what should I do?

Covid-19 symptoms, when they occur, vary widely and undertesting means many people have probably been unwittingly infectedCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageCovid-19 symptoms vary widely, and undertesting in many countries means that many people may have already had the coronavirus without having received a positive diagnosis. Is it possible to find out, and how should...

Scientists ask: could summer heat help beat Covid-19?

Experts are watching carefully to see if this virus will follow the seasonal pattern of flu, but warn differences may be minorCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageBalmy days are coming, with temperatures forecast to reach 20C in some regions. The warm weather will bring welcome respite to lockdown Britain - and put pressure on authorities trying to control crowds and...

Can my head lice save us all? | Stewart Lee

At a time when we can feel sympathy even for Boris Johnson, my collection of toxin-resistant nits should give us hope“Am I right in remembering you cultivate a colony of head lice in your cellar, Lee?” Nicola Bridgens, former artist in residence at London Zoo, for whom I once provided the voice of a depressed black widow in an insect house installation, called me, coveting my Pediculi humanus...

‘Nurses fell like ninepins’: death and bravery in the 1918 flu pandemic

A doctor’s harrowing account of the Spanish flu outbreak in London has valuable lessons for medical staff a century on Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIf predictions about the spread of Covid-19 are correct, the new NHS Nightingale hospital at the ExCel centre in London’s Docklands could soon see a “tsunami” of coronavirus patients. Many will have pneumonia...

Can a face mask protect me from coronavirus? Covid-19 myths busted

The truth about how you can catch coronavirus, who is most vulnerable and what you can do to avoid infectionFind all our coronavirus coverage hereCoronavirus – latest news and updatesWhat are the symptoms and should I see a doctor?Wearing a face mask is certainly not an iron-clad guarantee that you won’t get sick – viruses can also transmit through the eyes and tiny viral particles, known as...

Coronavirus UK: how many confirmed cases are in your area?

Latest figures from public health authorities on the spread of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom. Find out how many cases have been reported near youCoronavirus – live news updatesFind all our coronavirus coverage hereHow to protect yourself from infectionPlease note: these are government figures on numbers of confirmed cases – some people who report symptoms are not being tested, and are not...

Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should I see a doctor?

What are the symptoms caused by the Covid-19 virus, how does it spread, and should you call a doctor?Find all our coronavirus coverage hereCoronavirus – latest updatesHow to protect yourself and others from infectionIt is caused by a member of the coronavirus family that has never been encountered before. Like other coronaviruses, it has transferred to humans from animals. The World Health...

Trust is essential in these times. But Boris Johnson is not a man to be trusted

Boris Johnson has shown a woeful lack of responsibility as the Covid-19 pandemic has escalatedCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageTrust is the most precious commodity in any walk of life. The baleful fact is that the British government, in the midst of a profound and unprecedented crisis, is led by a man, and the party faction he represents, who cannot be trusted.The...

Walk on by: why do we ignore bad behaviour?

It’s a familiar scenario: a packed train or bus, an unpleasant loudmouth picking on a lone passenger... and nobody does anything. What drives us to look away – and can we change?What makes a hero? According to a popular meme going around at the moment, intentions matter more than actions. “Your grandparents were called to war,” it says. “You’re being called to sit on the couch.” In a...

Severe Covid-19 illness in young down to genes or 'viral load', scientists say

Coronavirus hits the old and those with other health problems hardest, but fit, youthful people are dying too, and experts are trying to understand whyCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIt remains one of the biggest puzzles of the Covid-19 pandemic. The disease generally causes serious problems only in older people or those with underlying health problems. But...

Plagues and wars alter economic policies: but not for ever | William Keegan

Coronavirus has changed Britain’s social and political orthodoxies. But not every crisis results in a revolutionAs a classical scholar, our prime minister will be all too aware of some uncanny parallels between the onset of coronavirus and the plague that beset Athens in 430BC.The immortal historian Thucydides wrote: “At the beginning the doctors were quite incapable of treating the disease...

The flaws in Sunak’s emergency loans plan suggest he isn’t Superman after all

The new ‘Cbils’ scheme is much improved. But many of its shortcomings could have been identified at the startBanks are wicked and Rishi Sunak walks on water. That, at least, was the narrative that prevailed until the end of last week. The dashing new chancellor, the cabinet star of the coronavirus moment, had assembled the Treasury’s armoury to provide lending to British businesses on...


SATURDAY 4. APRIL 2020


Behind the iron curtain, the final frontier: Soviet space art – in pictures

With more than 250 artworks sourced from cold war-era Russian magazines, Alexandra Sankova’s book Soviet Space Graphics: Cosmic Visions from the USSR (Phaidon £24.95), produced with the Moscow Design Museum, explores “the dream of conquering space”.One of the most vibrant publications was Tekhnika Molodezhi (Technology for the Youth) its “unearthly palettes of pink-violet and...

Pandemic shaming: is it helping us keep our distance?

Everyone from dog walkers to flower sellers have been singled out but online humiliation may not shift behaviourCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageScholarships have been threatened. LinkedIn and Facebook profiles have been removed. Death threats have been sent in their hundreds, if not thousands. And governments spurred into action. Since mid-March – when the...

Recruit volunteer army to trace Covid-19 contacts now, urge top scientists

Ministers must take steps to track down possible infections, says new grouping of health experts Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageMinisters must recruit an army of “contact tracing” volunteers to warn people who mayhave been infected by a Covid-19 sufferer, say public health experts.More than 50 leading scientists say health secretary Matt Hancock’s plans to...