Local scientists busting COVID-19 myths, you can, too | Covid-19

Scientists at HudsonAlpha Institute of Biotechnology in Huntsville have seen a lot of incorrect information about COVID-19 passed around in the past month.

The nonprofit, which conducts genomics-based research to improve human health and well-being, busted a few of the myths Thursday, and it has also launched a series of educational videos to help people separate fact from fiction.

Here’s the truth about three examples of misinformation making the rounds on social media and elsewhere:

Truth

• Drinking hot liquid or breathing hot air from a hair dryer won’t kill the virus in your throat or prevent it from spreading to your lungs;

• There are currently no home tests being offered for COVID-19. These are scams; and

• The new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, does not frequently mutate, and mutations have not led to more dangerous strains. In fact, scientists at HudsonAlpha say the virus has mutated less than expected and multiple strains are not circulating around.

For those who want more of the lowdown on the virus, Dr. Neil Lamb, vice president of educational outreach for the nonprofit, will break down the science of COVID-19 over the next few weeks, explain how it spreads and reveal what scientists are doing to help diagnose and treat the disease, said Media Relations Specialist Margetta Thomas.

The series, called Shareable Science Beyond the Blog, builds on Lamb’s Shareable Science blog, which addresses the latest life science headlines, providing a clear understanding of how these discoveries and advances will affect your everyday life and health, Thomas said.

Visit https://vimeo.com/hudsonalpha to download videos for more information.

HudsonAlpha

In addition to conducting genomics-based research, HudsonAlpha says its mission is to implement genomic medicine, provide educational outreach to nurture next-generation researchers and entrepreneurs, and create a more biotech literate public.

About 5% of HudsonAlpha’s workforce — 10 people — live in Limestone County, Thomas said.

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