Microsoft buys Bethesda / CD-Action

Nobody expected that. Microsoft has just announced that it has acquired ZeniMax Media, the industry giant to which Bethesda belongs. Thus, the company from Redmond became the owner of id Software, Arkane Studios, Tango Gameworks, ZeniMax Online Studios and of course Bethesda itself.

This purchase cost the company $ 7.5 billion. Thus, the number of Microsoft-owned studios has increased from 15 to 23. The existing Bethesda brands will go to the Xbox Game Pass, as well as future productions of the company – including Starfield. Does this mean PlayStation owners will miss some of them? It just hasn’t been said yet, but we don’t expect anything else.

Pete Hines summarized the acquisition as follows:

[…] The bottom line is, we’re still Bethesda. We’re still working on the same games that we worked on yesterday, made by the same studios we’ve worked with over the years – all of these games will be published by us.

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“Even asymptomatic people can have serious heart problems,” warns Marc Van Ranst

Din an article, le magazine « Scientific American, writes that in recent weeks the evidence has reinforced the hypothesis that heart damage can occur even in people who have never shown symptoms of the coronavirus. These frightening results help explain why America’s college and professional sports leagues exercise special caution when deciding whether or not to play.

Up to 7% of deaths from Covid-19 could result from myocarditis, according to some reports.

Virologist Marc Van Ranst reacted to the magazine’s analysis on Twitter: “This is one of the good reasons why many virologists choose not to ‘learn to live’ with the virus. Even infected people without symptoms can have serious heart problems ”.

Marc Van Ranst’s heart therefore leans towards a strategy of crushing the infection curve, “until we have a vaccine”.

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“Even headache and throat pain”

Three streets in Ville-Pommeroeul have had no drinking water for more than a week. In question: a bacterium of unknown origin. In total, 80 residents have to deal with this problem, which began on Monday, August 24 in the evening. “My neighbor sent me a message on the evening of August 24 to tell me that the water smelled bad. And indeed it was an infection

! The water really smelled like sewage throughout the house and was cloudy, ”says Corine.

The lady had to call SWDE several times. “I had“ stinky water ”. I even made the workers feel it, who replied: “What is this horror?” “. Then I started to have a headache and a throat pain ”.



She and dozens of other residents affected received a surprising response from the SWDE.

It would be a fecal bacteria … and the consequences are not pleasant

In the meantime, the Walloon Water Company is still looking for the problem: “It is quite unusual”


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“This is why we should not” learn to live “with the virus”

And while it appears that it is mainly the lungs that are the target of the virus, other organs are also being affected. According to the American magazine “Scientific American”, the virus could even cause damage to the heart of people who have contracted the disease. And not just to victims with symptoms. Even asymptomatic people could suffer from myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle.

This would explain why in the United States the American sports leagues are so cautious when it comes to resuming sports competitions. Because even the youngest athletes could be victims, without suspecting anything tonight.

According to some reports, up to 7% of deaths from COVID-19 could result from myocarditis.

Questioned by this analysis, the virologist Marc Van Ranst reacted on Twitter: “This is one of the good reasons why many virologists choose not to” learn to live “with the virus”. He continues: “Even infected people without symptoms can have serious heart problems.”

Marc Van Ranst therefore prefers that we “crush the curve” (daily for new infections) “until we have a vaccine”.


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The controversial hero of the film “Hotel Rwanda” arrested and extradited

«When the world closed its eyes, opened its arms to him», proclaimed in the subtitle the Hollywood film of which he was the hero. On Monday, Paul Rusesabagina, 66, appeared with his hands closed, handcuffs, in Kigali, capital of Rwanda. The photo and the announcement of his arrest had the effect of a bomb. Not only because the man, who inspired the film Rwanda Hotel, had lived in exile for more than a quarter of a century, but also because his arrest, preceded by his extradition from an African country, constitutes an important decision for the regime in place.

For at least ten years, the latter has accused Paul Rusesabagina of supporting rebel movements seeking to overthrow the power of Kigali by arms. Rusesabagina is “Suspected of having financed and created terrorist groups”, operating in the Great Lakes region, according to the Rwanda investigation office. What a strange end of course all the same for a man who, at the end of the genocide against the Tutsis in 1994, seemed, for a time, to have crowned the title of savior.

Heroic story

From April 12, 1994, he took charge of the famous Mille Collines hotel, a luxury establishment renowned in Kigali. It is a period of bloody chaos, soldiers and militiamen mercilessly hunt down all Tutsis. Many are those who, to avoid certain death, seek to hide in this hotel, belonging at the time to the Belgian airline company Sabena, but from which the Dutch manager quickly fled. He is replaced by Rusesabagina, who previously managed another hotel in the city. Therefore, two versions are opposed.

Read also Barely hotelier

On the one hand, the heroic story of a man who would have done everything to prevent the forces of the genocidal regime from entering the hotel, offering them money and drinks with each attempted assault. At the heart of the turmoil, 1,268 refugees will find themselves crammed into the grounds of the 113-room establishment. We sometimes sleep on the floor in the hallways and soon we will have to make up our minds to drink the water from the swimming pool, as the killers prowl endlessly in the area and the city is bombarded by the forces of the Rwandan Patriotic Front. (RPF), a rebel movement that will oppose the genocidal regime.

It is this version of the story that the director Terry George chooses to tell in 2004 in Rwanda Hotel. A real B-series melody, all the same selected for three Oscars. His “hero” becomes the darling of media around the world. He goes on tour after tour and receives, in 2005, the “freedom medalFrom the hands of US President George Bush, who welcomes him to the White House.

“Cynical Profit”

But little by little, another version of the story breaks out. Tongues loosen and paint the less flattering portrait of a manager who made the rooms pay and ransomed the refugees. «A cynical profiteer who built up capital thanks to the genocide», describes a witness in a survey published in 2012 by the German newspaper Southgerman newspaper.

Asked at the time by the journalist in his house in the suburbs of Brussels (he then owns another in Texas), Paul Rusesabagina does not deny having charged for the rooms, but emphasizes that it was for a limited time. For the rest, he rejects all the suspicions against him, claiming to be the object of a cabal because of his opposition to President Paul Kagame, the man who, at the head of the RPF, took power in 1994 and is still at the head of the country today. In 2015, a newspaper investigation the world will however underline the same ambiguities on the role of a decidedly very controversial “hero”.

Above all, the ex-manager who became an opponent in exile soon rubbed shoulders with the most extremist circles. In 2010, he was accused by Kigali of having financed the FDLR (Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda), a rebel movement initiated by former genocidaires, based in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), multiplied acts of terror there. , while aiming to reconquer Rwanda by arms.

Seven years later, the opposition party created by Rusesabagina launched its own armed wing, which openly claimed responsibility for attacks in southern Rwanda the following year. Kigali then triggers an international arrest warrant against him. In April 2019, the spokesperson for this movement, Major Calixte Sankara, was extradited from the Comoros and then imprisoned in Kigali. He pleads guilty and confesses, which would be damning for the former hero ofRwanda Hotel, speeding up his extradition. Now the fallen hero has returned to his homeland. And the film of his life begins a new episode, without glory or medals.


Maria Malagardis

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Only the color of this supercar costs the same as a Lamborghini

However, this is a base price. In fact, yesOnly the exterior finish can cost the same as a Lamborghini Aventador.

This information was disclosed by the eccentric millionaire Manny Khoshbin, owner of a unit. The Iranian rose a video to your account YouTube where it shows the different options and how the bill starts to rise

There are several exterior finish options, in addition to the 5 that come from the factory and have no additional cost. The most expensive of them is called KNC (Koenigsegg Naked Carbon) allows you to see the carbon fiber that dresses this supercar and costs $ 444,000.

KOENIGSEGG JESKO

Screenshot

But this is not all. A central band of gold paint can be added to this exterior finish, which raises the bill another $ 43,800.

The Koenigsegg Jesko is an exclusive vehicle of Swedish origin. It has a 5032 cm³ V8 biturbo engine, which is capable of developing a power of 1,298 hp (1280 HP; 955 kW).

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“I went up behind and touched my bra.” Details of the story about a Perm teacher who was given 9 years for harassing a student

– It is difficult to build forecasts, but I believe in the best. I feel sorry for mom, she is very worried, it has been going on for more than a year, – said “KP» 49-year-old math teacher Valery Syropyatov and, with a sigh, he entered the courtroom.

On Monday in the Ordzhonikidze court Perm the teacher was sentenced under the article “Violent acts of a sexual nature”. The sentence is 9 years and 6 months in a maximum security colony.

“The girl begged the three”

This ugly story happened in March last year in a Perm school. According to the teacher, she looked like this:

– In the seventh grade, where the girl studied, I taught mathematics for the first year. In the first quarter, she deceived me, I believed and put the “troika”. But there must be an educational moment. I told her that now she will hand over all the work in the sequence in which they are studied. And until we get to the control for the third quarter, the final mark at her will not be!

On that day, March 27, several students came to the mathematician to take the “tails”.

“Everyone sat at their desks and did the work, and once again she decided to slip away,” the teacher continues. – I began to ask myself, said that her stomach ached, her head … I insisted: “Decide the control, get your” threefold “and you can step on all four sides. If it’s inconvenient for you to study in the classroom – the children are noisy – let’s go to another office. ” We left, she stood at the table and again began to whine. I sit at the table and tell her: “Go, decide!” The man does not leave, I waved. I am sitting, she is standing – where will i get? Here in the belt on the side with the back of the hand and hit. It turned out cotton. I admitted this, and was removed by the director from teaching in this class. I apologized and believed that the incident had been exhausted.

Soon, the information got into law enforcement. First, criminal proceedings were instituted for Art. Art. 135 of the Criminal Code RF “Depraved actions”, and after six months the investigations were re-qualified as more serious, Art. 132 “Violent acts of a sexual nature.”

At each meeting, teachers supported

To the court – at each hearing in the Valery case Syropyatova – a support group gathered: former graduates, colleagues, parents of students … 17 of them acted as witnesses from the defense. They all said that they could not believe the guilt of their beloved teacher. He does not smoke, does sports, organizes excursions around the Perm Territory and cities for children Of Russiaorganizes competitions in rogain, tourist trips, alloys, fees …

Despite all the kind words spoken to the defendant, the state prosecution requested 13 years of imprisonment for him.

Valery Syropyatov on the day the sentence was announced, we met near the courthouse. He was light, without things. As the teacher himself explained, he believed that the court would figure it out and justify it.

“I’ve already checked in, now I’ll take a little walk, breathe in fresh air, mentally tune in and go,” he explained before entering the courtroom.

Despite the fact that the process was closed, the journalists and the support group were allowed to announce the verdict.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask. And the former graduates and colleagues who were present at the announcement somehow immediately went down. Someone could not hold back tears.

– Do you understand the verdict and the procedure for appealing against it?

“Yes, your honor,” the convict answered calmly.

At that moment, three escorts entered the courtroom. Knowing the rules of staying in places of deprivation of liberty — the teacher spent three days in a pre-trial detention center while the investigation was under way — the teacher began to unfasten his belt in order to remove it, took money from his pockets, a cell phone and gave it to a relative. The guards locked handcuffs on his hands, and asked all those present to leave the courtroom.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask.Photo: Vasily Vakhrin

I closed and he pushed my hands away

– The criminal case was considered in closed court, so we can’t explain the details, you heard the verdict, the evidence that the prosecution presented to the court was enough to plead guilty to a particularly serious crime against the sexual integrity of a minor, therefore the sentence so big – said assistant to the prosecutor of the Ordzhonikidze district of Perm, Dmitry Shishkin. – And that slap, and the version that the defendant himself told everyone about, including in the media, is a way of protection.

As it became known to “Komsomolskaya Pravda” from a source familiar with the materials of the criminal case, one of the evidence presented in court was the correspondence of the seventh grader with his girlfriend in social networks. Late in the evening on the day of math retaking, the schoolgirl wrote to her close friend that she was at school, and the teacher took her to a separate office, put her at her desk, walked up behind and began to touch her bra.

“I sat at the table, he was at the back and was pawing me,” she wrote. – I tried to close my hands, and he pushed his hands and touched me by the chest.

Experts examined the girl for bruises and the only thing found on her body was a small scratch on her finger.

The accusation was also based on the words of the girl, her mother and friend. Investigators also found a video from school surveillance cameras, which shows how one of the schoolgirls told Valery Nikolaevich that she had passed the debt, and he leaned over and began to say in her ear that she was good. This was interpreted later as a kiss.

During the investigation, a forensic medical examination was carried out, the biological traces of the teacher on the things of the victim were not found. The teacher was also tested for a tendency to pedophilia, but the result was negative.

READ ALSO:

“Sex scandal” in Perm: a math teacher shines 13 years for a slap on the priest of the seventh grader

In an interview with Komsomolka, the teacher told his version of events [видео] (More …)

In Perm, 17 graduates spoke at the trial in defense of a mathematics teacher who faces 13 years for a slap on the priest of a seventh grader

Among them were police officers and lawyers [видео] (More …)

“Having heard the verdict, he took off his belt.” In Perm, the teacher received 9 and a half years for a slap on the student’s priest

Valery Syropyatov was handcuffed in the courtroom (More …)

.

“I went up behind and touched my bra.” Details of the story about a Perm teacher who was given 9 years for harassing a student

– It is difficult to build forecasts, but I believe in the best. I feel sorry for mom, she is very worried, it has been going on for more than a year, – said “KP» 49-year-old math teacher Valery Syropyatov and, with a sigh, he entered the courtroom.

On Monday in the Ordzhonikidze court Perm the teacher was sentenced under the article “Violent acts of a sexual nature”. The sentence is 9 years and 6 months in a maximum security colony.

“The girl begged the three”

This ugly story happened in March last year in a Perm school. According to the teacher, she looked like this:

– In the seventh grade, where the girl studied, I taught mathematics for the first year. In the first quarter, she deceived me, I believed and put the “troika”. But there must be an educational moment. I told her that now she will hand over all the work in the sequence in which they are studied. And until we get to the control for the third quarter, the final mark at her will not be!

On that day, March 27, several students came to the mathematician to take the “tails”.

“Everyone sat at their desks and did the work, and once again she decided to slip away,” the teacher continues. – I began to ask myself, said that her stomach ached, her head … I insisted: “Decide the control, get your” threefold “and you can step on all four sides. If it’s inconvenient for you to study in the classroom – the children are noisy – let’s go to another office. ” We left, she stood at the table and again began to whine. I sit at the table and tell her: “Go, decide!” The man does not leave, I waved. I am sitting, she is standing – where will i get? Here in the belt on the side with the back of the hand and hit. It turned out cotton. I admitted this, and was removed by the director from teaching in this class. I apologized and believed that the incident had been exhausted.

Soon, the information got into law enforcement. First, criminal proceedings were instituted for Art. Art. 135 of the Criminal Code RF “Depraved actions”, and after six months the investigations were re-qualified as more serious, Art. 132 “Violent acts of a sexual nature.”

At each meeting, teachers supported

To the court – at each hearing in the Valery case Syropyatova – a support group gathered: former graduates, colleagues, parents of students … 17 of them acted as witnesses from the defense. They all said that they could not believe the guilt of their beloved teacher. He does not smoke, does sports, organizes excursions around the Perm Territory and cities for children Of Russiaorganizes competitions in rogain, tourist trips, alloys, fees …

Despite all the kind words spoken to the defendant, the state prosecution requested 13 years of imprisonment for him.

Valery Syropyatov on the day the sentence was announced, we met near the courthouse. He was light, without things. As the teacher himself explained, he believed that the court would figure it out and justify it.

“I’ve already checked in, now I’ll take a little walk, breathe in fresh air, mentally tune in and go,” he explained before entering the courtroom.

Despite the fact that the process was closed, the journalists and the support group were allowed to announce the verdict.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask. And the former graduates and colleagues who were present at the announcement somehow immediately went down. Someone could not hold back tears.

– Do you understand the verdict and the procedure for appealing against it?

“Yes, your honor,” the convict answered calmly.

At that moment, three escorts entered the courtroom. Knowing the rules of staying in places of deprivation of liberty — the teacher spent three days in a pre-trial detention center while the investigation was under way — the teacher began to unfasten his belt in order to remove it, took money from his pockets, a cell phone and gave it to a relative. The guards locked handcuffs on his hands, and asked all those present to leave the courtroom.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask.Photo: Vasily Vakhrin

I closed and he pushed my hands away

– The criminal case was considered in closed court, so we can’t explain the details, you heard the verdict, the evidence that the prosecution presented to the court was enough to plead guilty to a particularly serious crime against the sexual integrity of a minor, therefore the sentence so big – said assistant to the prosecutor of the Ordzhonikidze district of Perm, Dmitry Shishkin. – And that slap, and the version that the defendant himself told everyone about, including in the media, is a way of protection.

As it became known to “Komsomolskaya Pravda” from a source familiar with the materials of the criminal case, one of the evidence presented in court was the correspondence of the seventh grader with his girlfriend in social networks. Late in the evening on the day of math retaking, the schoolgirl wrote to her close friend that she was at school, and the teacher took her to a separate office, put her at her desk, walked up behind and began to touch her bra.

“I sat at the table, he was at the back and was pawing me,” she wrote. – I tried to close my hands, and he pushed his hands and touched me by the chest.

Experts examined the girl for bruises and the only thing found on her body was a small scratch on her finger.

The accusation was also based on the words of the girl, her mother and friend. Investigators also found a video from school surveillance cameras, which shows how one of the schoolgirls told Valery Nikolaevich that she had passed the debt, and he leaned over and began to say in her ear that she was good. This was interpreted later as a kiss.

During the investigation, a forensic medical examination was carried out, the biological traces of the teacher on the things of the victim were not found. The teacher was also tested for a tendency to pedophilia, but the result was negative.

READ ALSO:

“Sex scandal” in Perm: a math teacher shines 13 years for a slap on the priest of the seventh grader

In an interview with Komsomolka, the teacher told his version of events [видео] (More …)

In Perm, 17 graduates spoke at the trial in defense of a mathematics teacher who faces 13 years for a slap on the priest of a seventh grader

Among them were police officers and lawyers [видео] (More …)

“Having heard the verdict, he took off his belt.” In Perm, the teacher received 9 and a half years for a slap on the student’s priest

Valery Syropyatov was handcuffed in the courtroom (More …)

.

“I went up behind and touched my bra.” Details of the story about a Perm teacher who was given 9 years for harassing a student

– It is difficult to build forecasts, but I believe in the best. I feel sorry for mom, she is very worried, it has been going on for more than a year, – said “KP» 49-year-old math teacher Valery Syropyatov and, with a sigh, he entered the courtroom.

On Monday in the Ordzhonikidze court Perm the teacher was sentenced under the article “Violent acts of a sexual nature”. The sentence is 9 years and 6 months in a maximum security colony.

“The girl begged the three”

This ugly story happened in March last year in a Perm school. According to the teacher, she looked like this:

– In the seventh grade, where the girl studied, I taught mathematics for the first year. In the first quarter, she deceived me, I believed and put the “troika”. But there must be an educational moment. I told her that now she will hand over all the work in the sequence in which they are studied. And until we get to the control for the third quarter, the final mark at her will not be!

On that day, March 27, several students came to the mathematician to take the “tails”.

“Everyone sat at their desks and did the work, and once again she decided to slip away,” the teacher continues. – I began to ask myself, said that her stomach ached, her head … I insisted: “Decide the control, get your” threefold “and you can step on all four sides. If it’s inconvenient for you to study in the classroom – the children are noisy – let’s go to another office. ” We left, she stood at the table and again began to whine. I sit at the table and tell her: “Go, decide!” The man does not leave, I waved. I am sitting, she is standing – where will i get? Here in the belt on the side with the back of the hand and hit. It turned out cotton. I admitted this, and was removed by the director from teaching in this class. I apologized and believed that the incident had been exhausted.

Soon, the information got into law enforcement. First, criminal proceedings were instituted for Art. Art. 135 of the Criminal Code RF “Depraved actions”, and after six months the investigations were re-qualified as more serious, Art. 132 “Violent acts of a sexual nature.”

At each meeting, teachers supported

To the court – at each hearing in the Valery case Syropyatova – a support group gathered: former graduates, colleagues, parents of students … 17 of them acted as witnesses from the defense. They all said that they could not believe the guilt of their beloved teacher. He does not smoke, does sports, organizes excursions around the Perm Territory and cities for children Of Russiaorganizes competitions in rogain, tourist trips, alloys, fees …

Despite all the kind words spoken to the defendant, the state prosecution requested 13 years of imprisonment for him.

Valery Syropyatov on the day the sentence was announced, we met near the courthouse. He was light, without things. As the teacher himself explained, he believed that the court would figure it out and justify it.

“I’ve already checked in, now I’ll take a little walk, breathe in fresh air, mentally tune in and go,” he explained before entering the courtroom.

Despite the fact that the process was closed, the journalists and the support group were allowed to announce the verdict.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask. And the former graduates and colleagues who were present at the announcement somehow immediately went down. Someone could not hold back tears.

– Do you understand the verdict and the procedure for appealing against it?

“Yes, your honor,” the convict answered calmly.

At that moment, three escorts entered the courtroom. Knowing the rules of staying in places of deprivation of liberty — the teacher spent three days in a pre-trial detention center while the investigation was under way — the teacher began to unfasten his belt in order to remove it, took money from his pockets, a cell phone and gave it to a relative. The guards locked handcuffs on his hands, and asked all those present to leave the courtroom.

It was impossible to understand what the teacher experienced at that moment when the judge said “nine and a half years in a maximum security colony”, the teacher’s face was hidden under a mask.Photo: Vasily Vakhrin

I closed and he pushed my hands away

– The criminal case was considered in closed court, so we can’t explain the details, you heard the verdict, the evidence that the prosecution presented to the court was enough to plead guilty to a particularly serious crime against the sexual integrity of a minor, therefore the sentence so big – said assistant to the prosecutor of the Ordzhonikidze district of Perm, Dmitry Shishkin. – And that slap, and the version that the defendant himself told everyone about, including in the media, is a way of protection.

As it became known to “Komsomolskaya Pravda” from a source familiar with the materials of the criminal case, one of the evidence presented in court was the correspondence of the seventh grader with his girlfriend in social networks. Late in the evening on the day of math retaking, the schoolgirl wrote to her close friend that she was at school, and the teacher took her to a separate office, put her at her desk, walked up behind and began to touch her bra.

“I sat at the table, he was at the back and was pawing me,” she wrote. – I tried to close my hands, and he pushed his hands and touched me by the chest.

Experts examined the girl for bruises and the only thing found on her body was a small scratch on her finger.

The accusation was also based on the words of the girl, her mother and friend. Investigators also found a video from school surveillance cameras, which shows how one of the schoolgirls told Valery Nikolaevich that she had passed the debt, and he leaned over and began to say in her ear that she was good. This was interpreted later as a kiss.

During the investigation, a forensic medical examination was carried out, the biological traces of the teacher on the things of the victim were not found. The teacher was also tested for a tendency to pedophilia, but the result was negative.

READ ALSO:

“Sex scandal” in Perm: a math teacher shines 13 years for a slap on the priest of the seventh grader

In an interview with Komsomolka, the teacher told his version of events [видео] (More …)

In Perm, 17 graduates spoke at the trial in defense of a mathematics teacher who faces 13 years for a slap on the priest of a seventh grader

Among them were police officers and lawyers [видео] (More …)

“Having heard the verdict, he took off his belt.” In Perm, the teacher received 9 and a half years for a slap on the student’s priest

Valery Syropyatov was handcuffed in the courtroom (More …)

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Is it true that nicotine users contract Covid-19 less?

Hello,

Numerous case studies demonstrate this unequivocal : smokers who get Covid-19 have a risk greatly increased to develop severe forms of the disease. In this work, we find that the proportion of smokers is two to four times higher in severely ill patients than in those with a moderate form of the disease.

On the other hand, several publications relayed since the beginning of April report a counterintuitive phenomenon: in several countries, the proportion of smokers infected with SARS-CoV-2 would be lower than the proportion of smokers at regional or national level. The Minister of Health, Olivier Véran, recently mentioned this data.

In France, works being published conducted on a limited number of patients at the Pitié-Salpétrière, as well as a study in a school environment in Crépy-en-Valois (prepublished this April 23), also reported this statistical trend.

Many potential limits

Note now that the link between smoking status and propensity to be infected does not appear in all research. So in a recent study published in the Jama, involving 5,700 New York patients hospitalized for Covid-19, the proportion of smokers was analogous to that observed in the regional population.

The first studies were met with skepticism, not without reason. Indeed, many of these works have sometimes significant biases.

First limitation present in all studies (with the exception of French studies): the age parameter of hospitalized patients. Indeed, a significant proportion of patients with severe forms of Covid-19 are over the age of 65. The prevalence of smokers decreases very strongly with age (for example, in France, 65-75 year olds smoke 2.5 times less than the general population).

In the study conducted at Pitié-Salpêtrière, taking into account the age and sex of the patients, smokers nevertheless appeared to be four times less likely than non-smokers to be Covid +. A rate observed both in hospitalized patients and in patients treated on an outpatient basis. However, in order to draw more solid conclusions, these results should have been put into perspective with the smoking profile of patients who usually attend this hospital, at the same periods in previous years.

Another parameter that seems to be excluded from most analyzes: the socio-economic profile of the groups studied, which can strongly influence the expected proportion of smokers. A limitation mentioned by the authors of the French study, who established their calculations “Assuming that the population studied who lives in a limited area around a Parisian hospital has the same smoking habits as the French population in general”, and who note that “Healthcare workers were overrepresented in the outpatient group due to routine workplace testing when they became symptomatic”. The study conducted at Crépy-en-Valois seems to take this parameter into account. And its results are consistent with the Pitié Salpêtrière study.

Third important pitfall: the quality of the information collected is not always there … far from it. In some studies used by epidemiologists to conduct their analyzes, the smoking status of the sickest Covid + patients was simply not informed. Commentators have also noted that one of these studies considered individuals to be “non-smokers” less than 30 packages per year – preventing any comparison with national statistics which relate to all cigarette consumers.

For its part, the study conducted at Pitié-Salpêtrière seems to consider as “former smoker” any person who had quit smoking at the time of his hospitalization … without mentioning the hypothesis that patients may have stopped smoking because of the first Covid-19 symptoms! A point which would considerably influence the results. Requested by CheckNews, Zahir Amoura, author of this work, has not yet commented on this point.

Is the phenomenon biologically plausible?

The interpretation of these statistics, as well as the extent of the associated phenomenon, are still questionable.

Researchers, however, have begun to explore the hypothesis of a direct causal link between smoking status and primary SARS-CoV-2 infection. The question arises indeed: from a physiological point of view, is it plausible that lungs exposed to tobacco are less permeable to this coronavirus? Could nicotine be involved in the phenomenon?

A possible link with the ACE2 receiver?

SARS-CoV-2 infects cells by binding to the ACE2 receptor, abundant on the surface, in particular, the cells of the mucous membranes and the alveolar pulmonary tissue. The expression of the gene corresponding to ACE2 is not identical in smokers and in non-smokers. Based on animal models, smokers have long been considered to express less ACE2 – which suggests a simple explanation for the phenomenon: less ACE2 induces a lower propensity for infection.

But recent data, which seem to be corroborated by new researchsuggest that in humans, smoking is associated with a higher expression of ACE2. A higher propensity for coronavirus infection would therefore be expected. The epidemiological observations mentioned above, suggesting a protective effect of tobacco, would therefore raise a paradox.

Several explanatory hypotheses have been formulated. Some authors have advanced that in all patients, infection with SARS-CoV-2 would decrease the availability of ACE2 receptors in the lungs. The biological processes that usually mobilize these receptors would be hindered, leading to various symptoms of the disease. People with more ACE2, even if they were infected, would develop fewer symptoms. However, this interpretation is challenged by the Crépy-en-Valois study, where the diagnosis of infection was made on a blood test, and not on a simple clinical assessment of symptoms.

According to other works, the nAChR nicotinic receptor could modulate the activity of ACE2. Could stimulating nAChR make infection through ACE2 more difficult? This fact is not yet proven. “The possibility of a reciprocal modulation between ACE2 and the nicotinic receptor is an interesting scientific question for which we have no answer”, insists Professor Jean-Pierre Changeux, co-author of a scientific article inviting this hypothesis to be explored.

La Pitié-Salpêtrière has announced the launch of several clinical trials in this direction. The first, conducted on caregivers, aims to compare the infection rate between a group carrying nicotine patches and a group carrying placebos patches. More trials need to be done on Covid + patients in hospital to assess whether nicotine affects the course of the disease – especially in smokers who are forced to quit as a result of hospitalization.

Nicotine and vaping: preliminary data not very encouraging

The return of associations of electronic cigarette users does not seem to go in this direction, however. According to the analysis of a questionnaire sent in early April to several thousand members of the AIDUCE and SOVAPE associations, the rate of patients suspected of being Covid + was similar whether or not there was nicotine consumption – around 2.5 %. “Although it concerns nearly 10,000 people, this citizen survey is inconclusive on a major protective effect of nicotine, note the associations in a press release. The first data show no major positive or negative effect of vaping when faced with the risk of contracting Covid-19 for vapers and their entourage. ”

Tobaccoologist Bertrand Dautzenberg, who had encouraged these associations to explore this hypothesis, notes on Twitter that the data was not collected under conditions “Respecting all the obligations of scientific studies”. He nevertheless considers that they are not showing strong signs of a beneficial effect of nicotine in reducing Covid-19 levels. ” He invites an analysis of the Health Database to further explore this hypothesis.

No reason to start smoking

The tobacco specialist recalls “That tobacco certainly brings a negative effect greater than that of a small benefit which is not confirmed at all”. “This leads to encouraging all doctors to advise and support smoking cessation for all smokers.” The authors of the Crépy-en-Valois study abound in this sense, recalling that tobacco is responsible for 75,000 deaths per year in France. “Smoking cannot therefore be offered as a way of protecting oneself against the new coronavirus”, they insist.

Unsurprisingly, this finding is similar to that of the authors of a review on the complications of Covid-19 related to smoking. “Risk factors for severe forms of Covid-19 (pulmonary and cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, etc.) are more common in smokers. Smokers with comorbidities should quit smoking by all means. ” They also observe that confinement can lead to social isolation and psychological distress that increase the need for smoking. [En outre], smoking is more prevalent among the economically less advantaged groups, and they are potentially more at risk for Covid-19. ”

For its part, the association Alliance contre le tabac urged the greatest caution with regard to speculative information in circulation. In the absence of more evidence, nicotine users, “Should not expect to be more protected than the population from the current epidemic”, she recalls. In addition, she advises non-smokers to use nicotine substitutes. A warning also formulated by the promoters of the Pitié-Salpétrière study or by the Minister of Health.

In summary

Although well publicized, epidemiological observations associating smoking and the risk of developing the symptoms of Covid-19 are difficult to interpret at this time. Under the hypothesis of a real cause and effect link, the biological mechanisms mentioned in the press are still hypothetical. None have yet been formally tested.

Listen to the weekly behind the scenes podcast of CheckNews. This week: Covid-19: what are the real figures for deaths in intensive care?

Jérôme Salomon, the Director General of Health, mentioned a mortality of 10% in intensive care of patients hospitalized for Covid-19. In this episode, Luc Peillon explains why this figure is largely underestimated.


Florian Gouthière

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