COVID-19 testing clarifications in response to Elon Musk statement on ‘bogus’ testing
November 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Having been the main moderator of comments under LifeSite articles for several years, I was delighted to see the unusually high quality comments and discussion under yesterday’s report on Elon Musk’s rant about the apparent uselessness of current COVID-19 testing that he encountered.
A number of our readers presented commentary that really helps to better understand this complicated issue. They were so well done that I decided to give all of our readers the opportunity to consider their helpful input.
Here's some clarification - PCR and antigen detection are separate tests, with different underlying principles. Looking at them individually:
1. PCR takes small synthetic pieces of DNA, used as primers for a reaction that copies DNA strands. You throw them together in a tube, let the copying reaction happen, then boil it so the strands separate. Now you cool it again, and since you added far far more of the small synthetic primer than any sample, all DNA strands, both original and copied, stick to a primer. You run the reaction again, boil again, let it cool again. Each of those is one cycle, and in theory, each cycle doubles the amount of specific DNA in the sample, until there's enough that you can visualize it. Elon then talks about number of cycles, and that's critical. We used to say 25 cycles is more than enough to detect anything that's there in meaningful quantity. 35 cycles will detect it even if there is only a single copy. If you don't have anything at 35 and get something after that, it's fake. Even if you see something at 35, it's a single copy, so it's not replicating, so it's not a live virus. They say some of the tests go as high as 40 cycles, which if true, is patently absurd.
2. Beckton Dickinson doesn't make tests like that. They use antibodies to detect viral antigens (proteins that stick to that antibody). Pretty sure they've adapted it to a lateral flow assay, that works like a pregnancy test, leaving little bands on a stick. Those tests are only as good as the antibody they're using, and the robustness of the assay they've built. You can't generalize until you have a lot of experience seeing the limits of the test. In principle, it can be better than PCR, because it won't detect a fragment of viral RNA floating around in the air, but require more respectable amounts of antigen. If perfected, it's the assay I would trust. But there hasn't been enough time since this all started - the test is probably a work in progress, and is not yet reliable.
Tom, great explanation - thanks for posting this. I've heard from a reliable source that some are going as high as 45 cycles. Even within the designed parameters, PCR was never intended to be used to diagnose an active viral illness. I have suspicions it is no coincidence a test that the general public, and many healthcare professionals wouldn't understand might be manipulated specifically to create fake cases. I can't say I'm surprised this has gone so far out of the bounds of legitimate science. Many scientific and research communities left absurd for the Twilight Zone even before this started.
As I've maintained for months, the high error rate of the tests is the only, and most logical explanation for the chaotic statistics and analysis, conveniently science-defying explanations such as "asymptomatic" illness and repeat infection claims, untraceable politically reported spikes, and a never-ending pandemic that seems to ebb and flow with media-stoked fear instead of historic pandemic and human behaviors.
It is grossly irresponsible to make life-altering (or ending) global and nation-altering decisions based on unreliable tests. The healthcare and virology fields have destroyed their credibility. I wouldn't trust the CDC, NIH, WHO or NE Journal of Medicine to accurately diagnose or report a case of hay fever at this point.
I work in a lab and the analyzer that we used was made in Wuhan and designed specifically to test for this . The kicker is these analyzers were built before the virus supposedly even existed.
The "repeat infection" thing was absurd from the start. Even if antibodies are not a major factor with coronavirus immunity, we've known since the '80s that T cell immunity does the heavy lifting for respiratory viruses, and that's held up again here. T cell immunity is relatively long-lived. So if you've survived, it's because you're immune. If you haven't been sick and had a false positive, well, then technically you can be infected, but that's not a repeat infection.
None of this is a secret. I haven't worked with viruses for close to 30 years, and yet the principles have remained the same. From the start, it was obvious that sound science went out the window on day one, or at least by day 30. If the cases are exploding, why aren't we then talking about mortality rates now well below flu? Because the conclusion came first, and anyone wanting to remain relevant had to find a way to accommodate it. And so, making a scientific case, having doctors or scientists testify, all those persuasion techniques, are as useless as signing a petition. Those behind the agenda are in furious overdrive making up for lost time, and don't care how bad their loss of credibility has become. They know their time is short.
Bogus is right. 90% false positives according to virus/PCR experts I've read, possibly as high as 99%. There is literally no way to test for Covid19. Whether Elon realizes it or not, he figured out the fundamental problem: the foundation of the whole scamdemic is a completely useless test that turns colds into the illusion of a pandemic, making it impossible to treat the few thousand who might actually have Covid19. With a test that bad, one person could test positive off and on for the rest of their lives - a viral impossibility if you have an immune system. Or you could just flip a coin for any virus that suits you, and call yourself "Contagion-fluid".It is comforting knowing our healthcare industry is so obsessed with Covid, that you might not get proper treatment for anything else. I guess that was part of the plan though.
“It is comforting knowing our healthcare industry is so obsessed with Covid, that you might not get proper treatment for anything else.“
Someone I know has a family member who recently died of a pulmonary embolism after having surgery because the doctor would not see him unless he got a negative covid test, even though he got a negative result from a test right before having the surgery. He died after getting that second test while awaiting the results. He started having shortness of breath so the doctor assumed it would be covid, seemingly without considering the fact that there are numerous reasons to have shortness of breath, including pulmonary embolism, which is a real risk after the surgery he had! His wife is pursuing a malpractice lawsuit and I hope she wins. To make it worse, they had a baby a few months ago who will now grow up not knowing her father all because the doctor was too much of a coward to see him.
This is why it’s so irritating to see people calling healthcare workers “heroes” when so many of them won’t see you if you have any covid symptoms at all or unless you have a negative result after being tested first. I realize not all healthcare workers are doing that, but many are. I am a healthcare worker myself and have noticed that happening among many doctor’s offices that I communicate with. Just think of how many people have died and will die soon because they can’t get treated for various other diseases due to their doctors refusing to see them. It’s absolutely maddening.
That is absolutely horrible. I also hope his wife wins and the doctor loses his license. The "A hero lives here" signs are in several yards in our neighborhood. They are infuriating, given the many examples like yours. Our governor had been frequently referring to a 43 year old woman "who is dying of covid" as his poster-case to scare us. What he hasn't told the public is that she has a large lung tumor, but they wouldn't operate at first, out of fear of the covid-impact. Instead they just put her on a respirator, which as we know has a very high death rate. Now she is too fragile to operate to remove the tumor, and last I heard, she was going down hill. They are literally killing her out of fear and mistreatment. I hope the family realizes what the hospital and governor have done and sue.
There was a man here who died of a heart attack while working his farm. No symptoms of anything prior. His family was called by the state and told he had Covid (tested postmortem, without permission) and they should not attend or have others attend the funeral due to the risk of infection from a non-breathing man (interesting how the method of infection changes to fit the circumstance). They had to meet attenders at the door of the funeral home and explain that the state had lied. Not what a family should have to do when mourning the loss of a loved one.
These are all very serious malpractice cases, and in many incidences, crimes against humanity as well. This is all completely demonic.