[Q&A] COVID-19: What is a Super Spreader?

The latest Sivagangga cluster from Kedah was suspected of being caused by a super spreader strain of the COVID-19 virus that originated from Egypt and Pakistan. Health authorities believed there is a high probability that the cluster is a super spreader because of its higher transmission rate compared to previous COVID-19 clusters. We spoke to Associate Prof. Dr Chan Yoke Fun, Virologist & Senior Lecturer at the Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya to learn more.

[Q&A] Malaysia’s Best Science Communicator on Communicating Science

Science Media Centre Malaysia spoke to Atteleth Don, the winner of FameLab Malaysia National Final 2020 Championship recently on his win and what it takes to communicate science effectively. Don beat 11 other science communicators from across the country with his winning talk ‘Save our Homes by Saving our Mangroves.’

[Q&A] Know Your Microbiome: Your Questions, Our answers

We celebrated World Microbiome Day 2020 over the weekend by hosting a webinar "Gut feeling is real science: Know your gut microbiome!" with our expert speakers from Malaysia and Singapore who provided insights on the connection of gut microbiome to our health and mental state. During the live session, we received many questions from viewers but did not have time to get to everyone. So as promised, here are answers to some of the questions we did not get a chance to answer.

[Q&A] Bats, Pangolins and the Coronavirus

While bats have been put forward as the original host of SARS-CoV-2 nonetheless, the transmission of the virus from bats to humans requires intermediate hosts as well. Several studies have linked pangolins with SARS-CoV-2 infection where coronaviruses found in pangolin are highly similar to the novel coronavirus, which suggests that the mammal is the most likely intermediate host.

[Q&A] COVID-19, HIV and antiretroviral treatments

While there is a considerable amount of general information out there about the spread of COVID-19, very little is targeted at people who may be immunosuppressed, including people living with HIV. We speak to Dr Tommy Tong, Immunologist and Senior Lecturer at the Department of Biological Science, Sunway University to learn about the risks of infection and use of HIV antiretroviral drugs to treat COVID-19.

[Q&A] COVID-19 testing and treatment: What do we know so far?

As of today, the COVID-19 outbreak has soared past 1.5 million cases across 213 countries, with over 92,000 deaths. What do we know so far from testing for the novel coronavirus to available treatments? We speak to Dr Vinod RMT Balasubramaniam, Microbiologist & Senior Lecturer at Jeffrey Cheah School of Medicine & Health Sciences, Monash University Malaysia to learn more.

[Q&A] Behind COVID-19 test labs and processes

There are currently 43 laboratories in both public and private sectors that are involved in running COVID-19 tests, including universities labs such as Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS). We speak to Dr Tan Cheng Siang, Head of Centre for Tropical and Emerging Diseases UNIMAS to find out what goes on behind the labs.

[Q&A] Behind Oxford’s Team Developing COVID-19 Rapid Test Kits

A team of scientists from the University of Oxford’s Engineering Science Department and the Oxford Suzhou Centre for Advanced Research (OSCAR) is developing a rapid test kit for COVID-19. We speak to Lim Boon Chuan, a Malaysian PhD student, who is part of the team for the latest development.