The Abstract Podcast

Covid-19: Staying ahead of the game

In this episode, we discuss how ”smart ring” technology and “human challenge trials” can emerge as key scientific tools.

Originally Published: 
Covid-19 coronavirus scientists
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As researchers work around the clock to develop a vaccine for Covid-19, the novel coronavirus that’s sickened over 15 million people globally, we’ve seen human, scientific, and technological resources mobilize like never before.

Faced with widespread economic losses and mounting public pressure, scientists are banding together in the global fight against Covid-19, doing everything possible to bring about a quicker end to the pandemic.

From smart-tech wearable innovations that monitor symptoms to the “human challenge trial” volunteers making sacrifices to save others from the virus, the coronavirus has us pulling out all the stops, experimenting with technology — and on ourselves — to stay ahead of the Covid-19 curve.

In this episode of The Abstract, we discuss how ”smart ring” technology and “human challenge trials” can emerge as key scientific tools.

Our first story is about Covid-19 tracking ”smart rings” that can monitor users’ heart rate, body temperature, and breathing patterns. With the NBA's restart offering players the option to use these wearable sensors, researchers hope this unique testing ground can provide Big Tech with new opportunities to shift gears and help fight the coronavirus.

Our second story is about a growing group of volunteers willing to take science into their own hands and deliberately get infected with the novel coronavirus. Would-be volunteers hope these “human challenge trials” can speed up the vaccine development process and offer a new sense of purpose amid uncertain times.

Read the original Inverse stories:

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Right now, facts and science matter more than ever. That's part of the reason for The Abstract, this all-new podcast from the Inverse staff that focuses exclusively on science and innovation. Three new episodes are released a week, and each covers one theme via two related stories. Each features audio of original Inverse reporting, where the facts and context take center stage. It's hosted by the Tanya Bustos of WSJ Podcasts. Because we're Inverse, it's all true but slightly off-kilter. It's made for people who want to know the whole story. Nick Lucchesi, executive editor, Inverse

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