UPDATE 12 August 2021: This was post was originally published in August 2020. At that late date, I could not find a published report of either of the standard microbiology protocols being fulfilled entirely, which was the reason for the original post. There were pre-prints of research and claims to have fulfilled Koch’s or Rivers postulates, but I found all of them missing something. For example, they used RT-PCR to identify the virus, as I mentioned below, or they infected Vera cells to culture the virus, which was fine, but then did not follow through and infect a model animal with the cultured virus. Or, there was no chain of custody between the cause-effect steps, for example sample provenance was not provided. Some cause-effect link was missing in each publication, or entire steps absent.
For example, sequence homology and microscopy images of SARS CoV2 virus which was cultured in cells and then used to make mice sick does not satisfy cause and effect for Covid-19 when you do not have the provenance of the original SARS CoV2 sample. The sample could have been made in a lab, for example in gain-of-function experiments. You have merely proven that SARS CoV2 in the sample provided can make mice sick. But there is no link in this set of experiments to a sample from a sick human patient. There are many versions of this missing link problem in the literature.
As I said a year ago, SARS CoV-1 was confirmed following Koch’s postulates in 2003 by Dutch scientists. (2) Why is SARS CoV-2 not yet confirmed by Koch’s or Rivers postulates as the cause of Covid-19?
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As you know, COVID-19 (aka SARS CoV-2) is said to be affecting senior citizens (like me) more than any other group. But is that really true? Or, is SARS CoV-2 a follow-on infection after pneumonia or other disease which weakened the immune system?
As far as I can find, neither Koch’s postulates nor Rivers postulates (1), the standards for confirmation of cause (etiology) of infectious diseases, has been completed or published for SARS CoV-2. If you have done this virology, or if you can provide a reference to such a report, then please you would be helping us all by letting us know where it is published.
My literature search found no confirmation Koch’s or Rivers’ postulates has been fulfilled for SARS CoV-2, which is commonly called Covid-19, and merely associated with the deaths and disease in this so-called pandemic. A PCR test confirms that a specific sequence is found in the patient sample. An antibody test confirms that the patient has antibodies for a given pathogen. But, an association or correlation of a sequence or antibody with a disease is not equivalent and does not prove cause.
Do your own literature search. The scientists and papers usually mention justification or reason that Koch’s or Rivers’ postulates have not been fulfilled for CoV-2, for example the absence of a validated animal model is mentioned as well as the difficulties with animal models and cell culture media. (3)
SARS CoV-1 was confirmed following Koch’s postulates in 2003 by Dutch scientists. (2) But sequence homology between CoV-1 and CoV-2 has been reported at about 79%, while for example, homology between bat and CoV-2 is about 96%.
Without confirmation of cause following Koch’s or Rivers’ postulates, the world is probably doing extensive and expensive testing for sequence and antibodies and designing vaccines for exosomes or apoptotic bodies.
Time for some due diligence please.
(1) Viruses and Koch’s Postulates, Thomas M. Rivers. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC545348/
(2) Koch’s postulates fulfilled for SARS virus. Ron A. M. Fouchier, et al. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7095368/
(3) Amending Koch’s postulates for viral disease: When “growth in pure culture” leads to a loss of virulence, Joseph Prescott, Heinz Feldmann, and David Safronetz. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5182102/