“Do nothing out of selfishness or conceit, but with humility consider others as more important than yourselves, looking out not only for your own interests but also for the interests of others.”
Philippians 2:3-4 TLV
These verses seem especially fitting in our current circumstances. The pandemic continues to fill headlines around the world and impact each of our lives. A vital part of battling this virus is caring for others and finding ways to serve and help those in need.
Thankfully, Israel is seeing some good news in the midst of this second wave of coronavirus. The number of new cases appears to be going down. That trend will have an impact on the government’s decision-making concerning restrictions and whether to return to a more strict lockdown.
Also, scientists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have discovered that a drug, already approved by the FDA, shows promise as a way to stop the spread of the virus within patients – effectively rendering the virus inert or similar to a common cold. This could buy time for a vaccine and other treatments to be developed.
Researchers believe drug could turn COVID-19 into common cold
An FDA-approved treatment for cholesterol could be effective in dramatically easing the symptoms of coronavirus, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem reports.
Prof. Yaakov Nahmias, founding director of the Alexander Grass Center for Bioengineering, in collaboration with Dr. Benjamin tenOever of New York's Mount Sinai Medical Center, found that the drug Fenofibrate (called Ticor commercially) could inhibit COVID-19's ability to reproduce in lung cells.
The drug was effective in treating infected human tissue in the researchers' study in the Hebrew University's MicroTissue Lab. It will now have to be proven effective in human clinical trials.
The researchers found that the drug blocked the ability of the coronavirus to “hijack” the metabolism of the lung cells. That means it could inhibit the virus’ ability to reproduce and develop.
"Our discovery comes at just the right time because there are new indications that antibodies to the virus can only protect patients for a few months, whereas if our results are confirmed in clinical trials, then within a few months treatment with our drug could be turning Covid-19 into a type of common cold," Prof. Nahmias said, according to Globes, an Israeli business news publication.
This potential treatment is exciting news! Please be praying with me for more discoveries like this to help combat the ongoing pandemic.
Coronavirus cases appear to be trending down in Israel
According to Hebrew University, the doubling rate of coronavirus has dropped to every 24 days. At the peak of this second wave, the doubling rate was every seven days. And during the first wave, the number of infected patients doubled as quickly as every three days.
It appears that restrictions implemented over the past two weeks have already started to reduce the infection rate. Fortunately, these aren’t as severe yet as they were during the first wave.
Israeli coronavirus committee votes to keep beaches and pools open
On Monday, the government’s coronavirus committee voted to keep beaches and pools open.
“The decision to not close public pools and beaches is the right one … Mental and physical health are extremely important to all of us,” said committee chair Yifat Shasah-Biton, according to The Times of Israel.
Discussions regarding schools, restaurants and gyms are ongoing with decisions expected by the end of the week, if not before.
It looks like a new government policy could be forming that allows for activities in open spaces and closes events that take place inside, according to The Jerusalem Post.
Let us pray together for...
- Jewish people to seek their Messiah Jesus in the midst of these trials and discover His great love for them
- The approval and advancement of effective new technologies to help fight the pandemic and save lives
- Wisdom for Israel’s leaders as they decide what restrictions to implement and determine the steps needed to combat this crisis
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May we all look out not only for our own interests but also for the interests of others as we work together to battle the coronavirus. And let’s continue to pray for the Lord’s guidance and protection during these challenging times.