The COVID-19 pandemic from the multidisciplinary vision of 28 University Professors of Nayarit, Mexico

G.A Toledo-Ibarra; J Arvizu-Gómez; L Cayeros-López; P Luna-Jiménez; K.S Barrón-Arreola; S.A Ávila-Ángel; M.P González-Villegas; M.T Ávalos-Ruvalcaba; C Prieto-Godoy; D Pérez-Pimienta; N Galván-Meza; R Morales-Rojo; A.R Medina-García; D Maldonado-Félix; P González-Ibarra; M.K Jalomo-Ortíz; D.A Girón-Pérez; G.H Ventura-Ramón; A Iriarte-Solís; B Quintero-Hernández; A Gómez-Gutiérrez; B.M Guerrero-Guerrero; J.S Palacios-Fonseca; M.G González-de Pablos; C Ron-Guerrero; J.A Pérez-Pimienta; M.I. Girón-Pérez*

Correspondence: *. Corresponding Author: In this manuscript, all authors participated in the same degree. The corresponding author organized the authors, integrated and edited the manuscript. e-mail: E-mail: .


Abstract:

This document is a paper of multidisciplinary academic opinion of 27 professors and researchers of the Autonomous University of Nayarit, Mexico. In the manuscript, the pandemic of the COVID-19 disease is approached from different perspectives, with the aim to approach this great problem that has paralyzed humanity in the beginning of the year 2020 in an interdisciplinary form (thus many of the research problems should be approached), on the other hand, with the aim to prove all the academic potential that Mexican public universities hold to respond to society. Professors of history, biology, medicine, biomedicine, nutrition, social sciences, law, psychology, economy, tourism, political sciences, education, communication media, engineering, technological innovation, and intellectual property take part in this paper. This document represents a groundbreaking exercise in the Autonomous University of Nayarit and performing multidisciplinary work is, perhaps, one of the major lesson and message that the pandemic of COVID-19 will leave us.

Received: 2020 April 17; Accepted: 2020 April 30

revbio. 2020 Jul 12; 7: e976
doi: 10.15741/revbio.07.e976


Some history to understand the present

Knowledge of diseases that have permeated history of some regions, countries or the whole humanity has grown within the last fifty years. As a result of this effort in which different academic organisms participate, clinical behaviors of these conditions in public health, and the economic and cultural contexts in which they generate, are disclosed. An approach to the epidemic and pandemic issue appoints that they have accompanied the history of the world populations, what has changed are the organization forms to face them. In the two millenniums of the Christian Era, pandemics that have struk Europe, Asia and Africa, thus governors of the time, pathologies of infected people or prominent figures in the mischance, named and gave identity to the misfortune. Thus, in the II Century of the Christian era, the Antonine Plague or Plague of Galen are named after the emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus and the greek physician that discovered it. The pandemic covered great part of Europe and Asia, and killed five million people. Likewise, the Plague of Justinian is remembered, which incorporated Africa, its infection epicenters were Mediterranean and East Africa cities. Nevertheless, the most destructive pandemic took place in the middle of the XIV century, it was known as the Black Death or Bubonic Plague, and in Europe more than 25 million of victims were recorded, and was spread by commerce routes between Europe and the East. Strategies that are still being carried out to avoid virus transmission, such as the use of masks, regional or domiciliary isolation and quarantining vessels, were the result of this experience. This calamity, with several isolated outbreaks, was extended to the end of the XV century, where new global scenarios in economic tasks and the revelation of these scourges to humanity were customized.

In Mexico, the first of these pandemic experiences was the smallpox, which arrived with Spaniards in 1520 and was soon a great allied in the conquest. From this country, slow but steady, it was dispersed to South America, which led up to an 85 per cent in the decrease of the original population. Likewise, measles gave a hard time to religious orders and fraternities that helped sick people in hospitals. This fear to unknown diseases and the belief of them being a divine punishment increased the cult to the wide calendar of Catholicism. The XIX century, filled with social conflicts, would live a perverse list of regional epidemic outbreaks, and the cholera pandemic in 1833. Most of the sick people, because of fear to contagion, would die alone. To fight the disease, firewood was burned in the streets, houses were fumigated, but above all, there was a lot of praying.

In 1851, the disease came back, but not with the previous magnitude; something similar can be told about the Yellow Fever in 1883, or the Bubonic Plague in 1902. In the XX century, time of the First World War and the revolutions of Russia and Mexico, the most destructive pandemic known as the Spanish Flu was recorded, which generated a bit more than one hundred millions of deaths around the world. It came to Mexico in 1918 and in the peak moments 60 000 contagions with 1 500 and 2 000 daily deaths were reported.

In Nayarit, such pandemics and epidemics have been cruel, and led to a decrease in the population and the emergence of social and cultural institutions. Between 1618 and 1621 there was great mortality. To the presence of comets, a locust infestation followed which destroyed all crops. After, the cocoliztli (the Nahuatl term for an unknown disease similar to salmonella) ended towns and there was a relocation of the surviving population. Finally, cattle ranches were formed in the wastelands. Little is known about the Cholera Morbus in 1833, however, this adversity caused a relocation of the cemeteries in Tepic, Ixtlan, Ahuacatlan and Xalisco. In 1850, when this terrible scourge came again, Xalisco reached 300 deaths, 800 for Santa Maria, 200 for Jala, and 265 for Tepic. Compostela was free given its location in the margin of the main roads; nevertheless, the Christian piety saw this situation as a miracle happening and the feast of the Christ of the Mercy is celebrated ever since. The Yellow Fever arrived San Blas, coming from Mazatlan, in 1883. An official record indicates that there were only 59 deaths thanks to the cordon sanitaire. It has been also said that there were about half-million victims, many of them workers from the Central Rail that went from San Blas to Guadalajara. The epidemic would be one of the factors why this important project was suspended. Later, the bubonic plague, malaria and Spanish flu, with repercussions in the most unprotected sectors have inherited religious devotions to the Doctor Saints, Our Lady of Remedies, Our Lady of Refuge, Virgin of Guadalupe and Our Lady of the Rosary, amongst others. Finally, in these times that talking about death is so common, that it seems life has been cheapen in exchange to the hardening of our hearts, it is important to look into the past so we can understand that this pandemic of the COVID-19 can only be faced with new proposals of local, national and global solidarity.

Biological and ecological aspects of viruses

Biology of the Virus SARS-CoV-2

Viruses, against what most people believe, are not living beings, since they do not own a metabolism nor the capacity to reproduce themselves sine qua non characteristics of life. Neither are they a synonym of a disease, nor exclusive etiological agents of human pathologies. In fact, most of the viruses are unknown by us, and those few that we have studied, only a small percentage cause a disease in humans, wild or breeding animals and plants. Even many of the viruses only infect fungi and bacteria.

Hence, a great majority of the viruses are apparently innocuous and present in all the ecosystems, and form an essential part of them. Actually, life would probably not be the same as we know it without the viruses, since these biological particles are essential, for example, transportation, recombination and mutation of genes between the different organisms, processes that have allowed evolution and adaptation of living beings to the planet changes.

From the viruses that cause pathologies, recently appeared in the planet (generated through a molecular transformation and evolutionary adaptation) the virus SARS-CoV-2, which according to the International Committee of Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) that belongs to the genus Betacoronavirus, family Coronaviridae. This virus was described in December 2019 through strategies of sequencing of nucleic acid and was identified as the etiological agent of the COVID-19 disease, a new pathology that was reported for the first time in Wuhan, China. But, ¿what do we know about this virus?

As a member of the genus coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 is a virus enveloped by a lipid membrane, with positive polarity, whose genome is of RNA nature of simple chain, and codifies 4 structural essential proteins: spike (S), envelope (E), nucleocapsid (N), and membrane (M) proteins. SARS-CoV-2 is the seventh coronavirus that is related to the capacity of infecting human beings and that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome same as the SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV coronavirus. SARS-CoV-2 is zoonotic, which means that the virus was originated in animals and then transmitted to humans. Comparative analyses at nucleic acid levels show that SARS-CoV-2 presents high similarity (80 percent) at a genome level with coronavirus of bats. However, based on the transmission of zoonotic coronavirus previously described, it is very unlikely that bats would transmit the virus directly to humans, since the intermediary reservoir has not yet been identified. In addition, the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is spread by transmission human-human. As part of its infection mechanism, SARS-CoV-2 recognizes the cellular human receptor ACE-2 through its S (spike) protein, similarly to SARS-CoV. Such variations could be related with the virulence and/or pathogenic potential of this virus. It is important to consider that as an RNA virus, SARS-CoV-2 carries the inherent characteristic of presenting high mutation speed, which widens the possibility that this new zoonotic pathogen can adapt resulting in a more efficient transmission form person to person, and even become more viral. There is still a lot to know about SARS-CoV-2 in relation to its origin, pathogenesis, genetic variability, etc. However, from the previous information it seems accurate to be aware what we are facing, not only the current scenario, but in relation to zoonotic viruses, which should be under monitoring and analysis of possible genetic variations.

Biomedical and health aspects of COVID-19

Physiopathology

The coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) disease is a type of acute viral pneumonia and mortal in some cases, provoked by the pulmonary physiological alteration. In scarce 4 months of scientific studies, evidence shows molecular mechanisms by means of which the virus infects cells of the lung. In this sense, it was discovered that protein S of the virus needs the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE2) to enter the cell of the alveolar epithelium, this join is a significant determiner for the pathogenesis. Once the virus is inside the cell, the viral genome is freed in the interior and begins to replicate until vessels containing particles of the virus fusion with the cellular membrane to release the virus. Meanwhile, immune system cells, particularly macrophages and other innate cells, will recognize the virus and generate the activation of T and B lymphocytes, the latter will produce neutralizing antibodies IgM and IgG from which currently there is no certainty of the effectiveness in the issue of immunological memory and long-term protection. In addition, immune system cells produce a phenomenon known as “cytokine storm”, which is the production in large amounts of pro-inflammatory molecules, that together with the signalization via of the renin-angiotensin, endothelial dysfunction, oxidative stress and cellular death, are the main means of pathogenesis of COVID-19, developing the acute respiratory distress syndrome, which is the main cause of death in the sick people.

The information generated so far, back in time it would have taken several years to elucidate, however, it has now been possible to obtain it in weeks, having a strengthen scientific production, however it is still not enough to generate specific medicine and vaccinations.

Public Health and Epidemiology

Emergent infectious diseases cause epidemic outbreaks with great impact in public health, and enormous social and economic consequences. Only in this century, three of the diseases with pandemic capacity are characterized for having a coronavirus agent: SARS in 2003, MERS-CoV in 2011 and currently SARS-CoV-19, not forgetting influenza H1N1pdm09, which was transcendent and originated an outbreak (Mexico) in 2009.

On December 31st 2019, sanitary authorities of Wuhan, Hubei, China, informed about the presence of a conglomerate of 27 cases of Acute Respiratory Syndrome of unknown etiology, having a connection with a market of seafood and animals (outbreak). On January 7th 2020, the presence of the new coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is confirmed, a betacoronavirus lineage B. Thailand notifies the first confirmed case in a 61 year-old patient, resident of Wuhan. The next day, on January 14th, Japan communicates the presence of a pneumonia case confirmed for 2019-nCoV with a precedent of trip to Wuhan (propagation amongst countries). One month after the announcement, on January 30th, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared an Emergency of Public Health of International Importance, and on February 11th, the WHO in coordination with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations announce the name of the disease as COVID-19. In the subsequent days, cases are notified not only in the Asian region, but also in several countries of the European continent. Brazil informs of the first Latin-American case on February 26th and Mexico communicates on the 28th of the same month its first case, a 35 year-old male, with precedent of trip to Italy (propagation to other continents and regions). On March 11, the WHO issues the pandemic declaratory.

The WHO has elaborated plans of pandemic response, characterized by four periods and six phases with general goals in matter of public health, which are: interpandemic period with phases 1 and 2; pandemic alert period and phases 3, 4 and 5; pandemic period phase 6 and post-pandemic period.

Within the current moments of the pandemic, information is insufficient and generates constant changes, in both the epidemiological evidence and the clinical aspects of the disease. It is known that it is a disease transmitted person to person, and because it is a new virus, humans do not have immunity, being susceptible to get the infection; it has been estimated that for COVID-19 a carrier, with or without symptoms, can infect 2 or 3 more people (R0), during the transmission period, which lasts from 2 to 14 days. It has been estimated that a lethal rate of 3 %, and a mortality rate of 0.2 %, with variations in different population groups, mainly in association to other diseases such as arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, smoking, cancer, VIH/AIDS. A confirmed case is defined as that patient with acute respiratory disease with fever and at least one of the following signs: cough and/or difficulty to breath and history of travel or residence in a location with report of communitarian transmission of COVID-19 during the last 14 days at the beginning of the symptoms.

Until April 19th 2020, 194 countries from the six regions of the WHO have reported cases. On April 18th 2020, at a worldwide level 2,160,207 cases of SARS-CoV-2 have been notified. 146,088 deaths, with a lethal global rate of 6.8 %. Mexico informs of 7,497 confirmed cases in laboratory; 12,369 suspicious cases and 650 deaths, and a rate of 8.67 %. Nayarit informs of 39 confirmed cases, 18 suspicious cases, 7 deaths with a rate of 17.9 %.

Preparation and response plans to the emergency are elaborated by groups of experts in diverse areas: health, economy, administration, law, bioethics, education, risk communication, with the assessment of academics that analyze the diverse mitigation, contentions and response measures to the emergency, and adapting them in accordance to the social determiners of the populations. The most effective mitigation and contention strategies of COVID-19 are: establishing sanitarian surveillance in all the territory or region, decreasing movility of the population by the establishment of quarantine periods in homes, isolation of patients, implementing the adequate measures for treatment, attention and control of sick people, and the most important, implementing preventive measures such as hand washing, sneeze etiquette, adequate management of tools, amongst others.

Pharmacological treatment

Up to this moment, there are no specific treatments to control this disease. Researchers have devoted their time and knowledge to look for a medication that brings hope to the thousands of patients who suffer the disease in this moment. The list of medication that have been chosen so far rank from the analogs of neucleosides, inhibitors of proteases, to activators of genes that manage to inhibit virus replication. The aim seems to be common in the election of those: avoid at all cost that the genetic material included in the virus gets replicated or avoid that it reaches the places within the cells that would allow its replication. Their actions, and the chosen substances, will now be briefly mentioned.

An analog of nucleosides, as the case of ribavirin, joins the viral RNA provoking a great number of mutations so that its replication is impossible, inhibiting the inverse transcriptase to decrease the viral load. On the other hand, a proteases inhibitor (such as Ritonavir and Lopinavir) will join these enzymes to hinder the release of proteins and the subsequent maturity of a viral particle to an infectious state. In different words, it will avoid the viruses to become infectious and so they cannot “attack” other healthy cells. The drugs belonging the group of aminoquinolines, such as chloroquine and its analog hydroxychloroquine, change pH within the cell to infect, hence interfering with its receptors in order to impede viral infection processes. The interferon will inhibit the function of the Protein Kinase R, key factor in the replication of the virus SARS-CoV-2.

As it can be observed, treatments studied in the assays are chosen with solid basis in the infectious mechanisms so far known as SARS-CoV-2, so that clinic research times can be considerably reduced and the possibilities to respond in a short term increase.

No drug is chosen arbitrarily or by sudden idea lacking scientific basis, hence as a result of these assays, a safe, efficient and accessible treatment that supports its election in new patients must be released. In this moment, two separate assays seem to be giving promising results, one of them using the remdesivir, especially for acute phase with clinical improvement of 84 %. Another assay clearly appoints its results as the use of azithromycin with hydroxychloroquine, mentioning that “there is a mortality of about 0.5 % with an extremely high healing rate”.

Nevertheless, specialists question the treatments, since they state that with no control group, it is impossible to prove the effectiveness of the medications. These results should work so that governments or the decision-makers of the institutions make a decision so it can have an impact on the health of the population.

Preventing Measures and Vaccinates

Without doubt, the best way to fight any disease is prevention. Hence, the most effective medicine is not healing medicine, which Mexicans are used to, but preventive medicine, the one that few people and educational and health institutions care for. This asseveration relies on the base of historical and scientific data, for example: the best way to fight gastrointestinal infections are not only antibiotic but the installation of drainage at homes or even just by covering stools.

In the case of COVID-19, it is a disease that started with an outbreak in China and rapidly was considered an epidemic and a pandemic. The sine qua non requirement for the transmission of a contagious disease is the closeness of the infected organism with the susceptible organism. Therefore, the most effective preventive measure to fight this disease is the isolation of individuals, in this sense, we all must be seen as suspects of being infected (we are all guilty until proving the opposite). Another preventing measure due to the nature of the virus is a simple well performed hand wash with water and soap, since the lipid nature of the virus membrane is highly susceptible to amphipathic properties of soap. Using chlorine and other “safe” sanitizers is not bad, but a good wash should be enough. Another measure, much more sophisticated and expensive, are the vaccinations. This product of science was discovered a little bit more than 100 years ago. Even though Chinese and other millennial cultures used empiric forms, rather rudimentary immunization forms.

Nowadays, it is not easy nor cheap to make a vaccination, due to the fact that in the topic of vaccinations, before proving they produce immunity (production of antibodies or lymphocyte activation), it must be assured that an innocuous pharmaceutical preparation is made for the individual who will receive it. To accomplish the latter, vaccinations must be elaborated using state-of-the-art biotechnological methods with the strictest manufacturing measures, the must algo go through an infinity pre-clinic and tests, controlled by the highest ethical standards before getting into the market. Thus, it is safe that currently (14/04/2020 date of writing of this opinion), there are already vaccinations to protect the organism against SARS-CoV-2; however, we will have to wait several months for them to be released by national and international health organisms.

Nutrition and Lifestyle as predisposition factors

In Mexico, the high incidence of overweight and obesity are mostly related to a culture of poor nutrition and physical inactivity. On the basis of the lack of availability of healthy food, combined with an over exposition of ultra-processed products and, on the other hand, the lack of physical activity or sports practice of the members of the society have caused us to be susceptible to develop cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes. Situation that rises the risk to be affected by a bad version of the COVID-19, increasing the risk of mortality in the Mexican population. It must be considered that the current physical isolation the society is, makes them susceptible to a high caloric ingestion, and the time in front of a screen increases, enhancing weight increase and its comorbidities.

It is well known that the adoption of healthy lifestyles has a great impact in the prevention, evolution and treatment of different pathological states, in particular the high nutritional quality feeding with the intake of vitamins, minerals, macronutrients and other bioactive substances. The importance of having food rich in quality nutrients for those who get COVID-19 is fundamental, especially in the evolution of the disease and the recovery capacity, from immunomodulation, as well as for those who do not get the disease, the maintenance of an optimal healthy state is crucial once everyday activities return to normal. Thus, health organizations at a worldwide level have delimited key diet aspects for the nations regarding feeding that must be promoted during this sanitary contingence. These aspects are to enhance: a) consumption of fresh food, specifically 400 gr of fruit and vegetables, 180 gr of legumes and full grains, 160 gr of meat and low-fat dairy, raw vegetables snacks, b) consumption of 8-10 glasses of fresh water a day, instead of sugar beverages, c) moderate consumption of oils and fats, d) avoid the use of ultra-processed food and other food rich in salt and sugar, e) cook healthy food at home, f) avoid the ingest of alcohol and use of tobacco.

As part of integrated health of the population, a complete state of well-being must be found, including physical, social and emotional health, to do so, fight inactivity is essential in this isolation period, recommendations from the WHO to remain active are at least 60 minutes a day, in young people, while for adults, 150 minutes per week, focusing suggestions in the advantages of performing them at home, such as: not needing special clothing, using house elements such as going up and down stairs, exercise routines online, jump rope, active individual and family games for children, dance, among others. Hence, benefits in the maintenance of health, increase of social abilities, improvement of self-esteem, anxiety, stress and depression reduction. Finally, the idea to establish these guidelines is to be better prepared to face a probable contagion by SARS-CoV-2.

Mental health

Mental health is defined by the WHO as a “state of complete physical, mental and social wellness, and not only the absence of affections or diseases”. Therefore, it must be an essential in any sphere, however, its importance is even higher when we talk health improvement, specifically in reference to epidemics. The XXI century has been marked by a long list of considerable infections, such as the influenza outbreak in 2005, Ebola in 2014 and a new epidemic that crash the world in 2019, the COVID-19, threatening and causing death to thousands of people.

Despite the fact that COVID-19 is a complete new infection and there is not a great number of investigations on its impact in the mental health of the population, it is useful to analyze the behavior and affectation of people with other epidemics, even if they have a different symptomatic chart, with the aim to prevent the development of psychological disorders. Some of the investigations about epidemics refer that regarding emotional reactions the most evident are fear, panic, anguish, stress, worry, and there is also evidence of exaggerated emotions such as collective hysteria and paranoia. Likewise, the immediate more frequent psychological disorders depression episodes, stress and increase in violent behaviors such as family violence are reported, as well as alcohol ingestion. In the case of the late effects: depression, anxiety, adaptation disorders, posttraumatic stress, psychosomatic disorders, alcohol abuse or addictive substances and pathological griefs. Pathological or complicated griefs are those that do not evolve naturally, massive deaths and caused by infections, makes it impossible for the relatives of the victim to have an adequate grief process, so that they can have an adequate expression of the grief, obstructing the recovery process, in addition to the possibility of living grief simultaneously.

Therefore, making emphasis in having more trained staff in the promotion of mental health in order to perform concrete actions for the improvement of the people's life quality, mainly to those who are more vulnerable to crisis during an epidemic, such as the survivors to the infection, relatives of a deceased infected person, people with defined mental disorders and vulnerable groups. First psychological aids or the intervention during a psychological crisis, could be a first response, giving these interventions within the first moments is crucial to protect life and mental health of people.

Social Implications

Social Pandemic

Not one thing of what is human is alienated from social science. Even the pathologies (including ethology, clinic, treatment and prophylaxis) can be object of study with the quality to define them as a social phenomenon and fact, hence, social, historical and culturally situated. Therefore, this social contingence of COVID-19 is one in the Far East, another in the Old Continent, and a different one in the American Continent. It is also differentiated intersectionally: by sex, race, ethnics, social class, even sexual preference and definitely political geography of the individuals.

We know that the Coronavirus Pandemic came late to Mexico. We were informed on time about its arousal and evolution; urgent callings to different governments have been made from different organisms to undertake actions to detect, performing tests, treat, isolate, track and mobilize their population in prevention. The aim is for the outbreaks not to become groups, groups do not cause community transmission, and this turns into pandemic. The main action: social distancing and isolation.

Why has social distancing/isolation been so difficult for Mexico? It can be speculated from several approaches. First, physical distance but also the cultural origin of the virus; even when collectively we are used to talk about the globalized world and the global village, truth is we individually are not aware of the so called “butterfly effect”: anything, no matter how small and insignificant at this distance (physical and cultural) seems, can and will have effects in our lives: until two months ago, it seemed almost impossible to become victims of COVID-19. We did not prepare mentally, socially, economically, moreover, in the prophylaxis: it just came one day and in places like ours, where the outbreak is only in a group, we still sense it as low risk or low danger that with the usage of chlorine, sanitizing gel and a salute in the distance, is covered. This will become a social sin, which beyond regret, we will have to deal with the consequences.

Second, why, even though we were informed, we did not prepare on time? Because in our country we lack proactive political leadership, where direction, proposition and planning are main issues, more than reaction and opportunism, and we lack solid and inclusive social and humanist leaderships, which could Universities, but the system has not allowed them to make a leap. Without reliable institutions, there are few actors with a strong enough voice to be heard by everyone, and no words that tremble in the center of this land are being heard either. We lack these threads that make it possible to elaborate and ling proposals, ideas or attitudes that allow to link, maintain or reinforce social fabric.

This weaken social fabric centralizes the third case of our resistance to the reclusion of the product of distancing/isolation. Weak leaderships propitiate weak societies and collectives; simulation of political actions causes simulation of civil society actions; disguising realities in oral, statistical and narrative speeches, propitiating soap-operas, satire and memes. It is not true that we have, it is not true that we won, it is also not true what we grow or that we advanced; we are not, not all of us, it is not enough, we do not considerate. Hence, we have no even conditions at the moment of performing the social confinement: with no gross private investments, with most Mexicans with no decent jobs, “rested” or “unworried” at the moment of the epidemic, labor precariousness, low income vs high consumption, savings in the minimum with no accumulation of goods to hold contingence, with no adequate housing to inhabit 24/7/365, with deep breaches in the access and quality of public services, social programs, digital capacities; in this country, the one with four rooms per house -in its majority those of social interest-, the proposal of “Stay home” makes no sense nor reference or possibility. And in this country with deep inequities, the richest decile of the population has no clarity of the conditions of the five deciles that are at the base of the pyramid, the second decile of the pyramid has the conditions to go through confinement in the best conditions, although for a definite time (two or three months, in accordance to the most positive perspectives for the business sector) and both groups do not understand the acting of the deciles in the medium, who must break their confinement every day in order to provide first and priority need articles.

Fourth. If -with all due reservoirs- we accept the premise that material conditions determine existence, ideology and consciousness, the social confinement gets complicated. The main, and up to this moment, only action before the pandemic “Stay Home” has forgotten that in Mexico only 3.8 books are read in average, that the average Mexican consumes 8 hours of internet a day, mainly in movie and video streaming, or social network, that 40 % of the population from 18 and older do not exercise daily, that 38% are considered believers of traditions and meditation is not rooted among the population, that 55 % of violence against women and little girls is caused at home, and 60 % of the abuse to minors is performed by a close relative (father, grandfather, brothers, uncles), that household chores are increased without the active participation of all family members, causing a work overload for women. At least, the confinement is in sync with the most identified hobbies: watching TV, listening to music, and surf on social networks. If, as it can be perceived, “Stay home” is the policy of state and federal governments, a proposal that considers the social superstructure must be guaranteed.

In fifth place, last but not least, Anthropology teaches us that the human being is social by nature and need; perhaps also by identity. A good explanation could be offered by Octavio Paz, in the beginning of chapter 3 in The Labyrinth of Solitude: “The solitary Mexican loves parties and public meetings. It is always a good time to get together. Any excuse is valid to interrupt time and celebrate with ceremony and parties, for man and happenings”, with a calendar loaded of parties and rituals. And we are from Nayarit, nothing from the Mexican is strange to us.

Labor Law

The pandemic we face is shaking the traditional social, economic and political organization forms. Labor is as ancient as humanity itself, but not the regulations that rule work relationships, since it is essentially with the raising of the industrial revolution in the XVIII century that the creation of employment regulations was intensified. However, it was until the early XX century -our Constitution from Queretaro in 1917 was the first in the world to include them, that constitutional rights of workers were added to the constitutions- working times of eight hours, social security, minimum wage, amongst others, and so the social dimension of labor rights, that has also taken and used in international labor agreements.

Nowadays, most of the constitutions in the world provides de right for all people to have access to dignifying and socially useful work, as established in article 123º from our Constitution; however, reality is that most of the countries in the world have not been able to guarantee the true scope of this right. The current sanitary crisis hinders the almost null employment growth at a worldwide level, since for the almost 188 million people that cannot find a job -according to a report from 2020 of the International Labor Organization (ILO), now they add the huge problem regarding the stop of the destruction of employment by protecting companies and caring for the rights of the 3300 million people that conform the world’s work force, from which 2000 million work in the informal economy, which constitutes the most unprotected before the pandemic.

The ILO has recommended that the respond of countries to the pandemic in labor matter must contemplate four pillars: 1) stimulate the economy and employment; 2) support companies, employment and income; 3) protect workers in their workplace y; 4) look for solutions through social dialogue. Nevertheless, each country is taking their own measures, attending particularities, mainly economic, and the strength of their social security systems and work protection. If it has been clear that the best measure to avoid propagation of the virus is social distancing and confinement, which are being applied in most of the countries because we are all at risk of having an infection, it is also clear that poor countries, with less resources to face the economic and social challenges of the pandemic will have more difficulties to conserve jobs and protect workers.

In the current circumstances, governments must implement extraordinary economic measures to support companies and maintain the most possible number of employments during and after the sanitary contingence. Within the next few weeks, when it is safer to open employment sources and workers can go back to their workplaces, a great transformation of labor law must be triggered, to boost public policies that crystalize traditional labor rights, especially the reinforcement of protection to employment and wage measures, such as an unemployment insurance for all workers and the regulations of work at a long distance, amongst others.

Human Rights

In the first months of the year, global economic powers were tested, where adopted measures to avoid spread of the virus were different, such as social distancing through intensive persuasive campaigns to the population, disaster declaration and/or sanitary emergencies, decrees that restrict all type of movability considered non-essential, curfews, and state decrees of constitutional exception, among other measures that somehow immerse the states in a democratic, economic, legal, social, ethical and moral dilemma, just to mention a few of the scenarios that exist, coexist and suffer an alteration with no precedent in the recent non-violent history.

Hence, adopted measures pretend to guarantee in the best possible way, the human right to health. Ironically, countries are forced to restrict the exercise of other human rights in diverse forms, from freedom of transit to free expression; the human right to obtain from governments objective and true information, as well as free press; economic, social, cultural and labor rights, such as human right to hold a job, access to electronic capitals that are hold in the world banking; to psychosocial health, that would allow to maintain the rhythm in a country with recovery hope; human right to maintain the education course at all possible levels, human right to being fed. However, the most important human right in this order, not forgetting the principle of interrelation between the ones in this list: the human right to live, that at the moment, depends greatly on the attainment of medical attention and health services of the higher possible level.

The latter summarizes Human Rights of higher importance, especially Economic, Social, Cultural and Environmental (ESCE) rights, in a perverse scenario where developing countries and third-world countries must take decisions that sacrifice their hope of economic growth at a short and medium term. The second mentioned countries have seen the first ones (the called “economic powers”) suffer the effects of COVID-19 with more setbacks than successes, and unfortunately, reproducing the same mistakes. In addition to the effects of the pandemic per se, this crisis exacerbates the evils of underdevelopment, such as poverty and malnourishment, and spotlights the other crisis: human ignominy, lack of democratic values which undermines our basic budget of social living in peace and justice, where the lack of empathy, solidarity and honesty, in both government and citizens, set path for despotism, discrimination, xenophobia, aporophobia, amongst other types of phobias and contravalues that obscure institutions and reach conquers in matter of Human Rights.

Economic Repercussions

The current pandemic COVID-19 holds very significant social, health and economic implications in a great number of countries. The basic premise has been to attend all those infected people and maintain a “healthy distance”, with the only aim of not to collapse health systems; obviously, this is generating intense affections in the worldwide economy. Having its origin in China -one of the main economic drivers-, the affectation in other countries has been felt before the virus arrived, evidencing the high dependence of value chains with China. Once the virus appears in the rest of the countries, the closing of non-essential companies of all sizes and issues have resulted in a considerable increase of unemployed people.

In Latin America, particularly in Mexico, economic structure is based in micro, small and medium size companies, which generate seven out of every ten jobs and around 60 % of the Gross Domestic Product; nevertheless, it is because of their size and the utility margins they generate, that they cannot face the commitment with their employees, hence, they have implemented strategies of wage reduction, discharges and layoffs.

Social isolation only allows companies dedicated to essential activities (health, food, transportation, etc.) to work “normally”; among the non-essential economic activities are those related to tourism (transportation, hospitality, restaurants and associated services), that are intensive in manpower and generate 1 of every 10 jobs worldwide. Tourism been one of the most affected sectors, due to the travel restrictions (forced or self-imposed) to travel destinations.

According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), these travel restrictions might be translated into a loss of around 75 million jobs around the world.

For Mexico, international tourism represents one of the great pillars of foreing exchange; in Mexico domestic tourism contributes 80 of each 100 pesos generated by this sector. Under such conditions, the Mexican Association of Hotels and Motels estimate that the loss of jobs associated to this “lockdown” COVID-19 in the sector for the country, will end up with a disappearance of 200,000 work sources, while in commercial aeronautics, the International Air Transport Association forecasts that the loss for Mexico will be 96,000 jobs.

With the gradual return to “normal” activities, companies will be able to initiate a process of recovery, making it easier for those organizations that can adequate to the recommendations of maintaining isolation (home service, streaming education, telemedicine, etc.), however, in the case of tourism, its recovery will go slow in destinations of high affluence; nonetheless, this crisis will also represent an opportunity for alternative tourism (ecotourism, agrotourism, gastronomic tourism) with personalized experiences for families and small groups, which will allow a redistribution of the benefits that the sector generates in the communities.

COVID-19 and Geopolitics

Geopolitics is defined as “the science and art or technique of knowledge application of geographic, political and historical factors, in reciprocal and joint action, for the political domain of space -with all the implications of such domain in the economic, social and cultural issues-”.

The world made a stop caused by COVID-19. The water of the rivers, oceans and lakes is now clearer, more transparent and crystalline in several regions of the world. What is the learning this pandemic leaves to humans? In my opinion, we must study and learn about history of geopolitics, the rise, boom and fall of the great powers so we can explain the fight over the hegemonic power that China imposes in the world scenario, mainly to United States. Millennial China is rising and wishing to overcome United States. For Chinese, time is their best ally.

The pressure China causes to the “worldwide status quo” and its regional influence is undeniable in the region of the Asian Southeast, in addition to its medium influence in Latin America and Africa. Its “medical-commercial” participation decided in Italy and Mexico to face COVID-19 are sample of influence and world propaganda. The negative attitude of France and Germany to support Italy allowed China to immediately act in order to settle in process and future mega-industrial projects in Italy, in exchange of medical cooperation. In Mexico, China is widely collaborating, since part of its manufacturing and financial services future is linked to commerce with United States and the financing of Mexican government infrastructure.

There are three immediate geopolitical effects that can be distinguished parallel to COVID-19: 1) The permanence and preponderance of the States, no matter the political regime, in trying to safeguard health and security of their population in spite of the collateral damages that they cause to other States; 2) The most visible pressure regarding health systems, employment loss, currency depreciation and fiscal discipline, is for the States and will contribute to impulse strategic changes in their internal functioning depending on the federal system and local governments. A setback in the democratic regimes and advance in the authoritative practices can be glimpsed; 3) The international financial system will maintain control over the countries in development, establishing new terms of external debt, interests and perennial indebtedness. These practices are being applied to individuals and SMEs (small and medium size enterprises) to extend the payment periods with interest accumulation, new purchases with deferred payments and banking and government credits.

The owners of geographical and political knowledge about the world are the owners of capital, natural resources, manufacturing, services and finances. Beyond the States, the fight over the hegemonic power of the world between two or the States, without forgetting the economic and financial conglomerates that are capable of inventing crisis, creating viruses and selling vaccinations to the world. Geopolitics brings these analysis elements to pinpoint the State from the responsibilities that capitalism agents must assume.

Education

Formal Education

In the last few weeks, the pandemic for COVID-19 has caused a series of changes in the population around the world, in many cases these have been hard, complex and irreparable. In the context of formal education, there is no exception, since even though there is a wide diversity in the models and educational modalities offered in Education Institutions (EI), the contingence represented a number of problems and challenges with impacts at a short, medium and long term.

In the world context, it can be observed that EIs have adopted different modalities to face the challenge that a contingence of this magnitude implicates, mainly in front of the cease of activities that imply presence. A great number of institutions have used all the resources at their reach in the academic, administrative, organizational, technological, physical and human aspects, working them out by contingence planes.

It is a moment of crisis from two perspectives. The first has been focused in giving immediate solution to the emergency with the incorporation of technological tools and calendar adjustments to continue with the academic development and formation of students. The second, forcing to visualize from this disruption, the innovation, creation and recreation of forms that education is offered, and the use of all technological resources and tools at hand to reach the aim.

To determine the type of institutional response in this situation, there must be a diagnose that allows the analysis of styles and learning and teaching forms of the community members, as well as their professional and academic profiles, and the conveniences that as institutions we have given and are giving for development. The respect to the characteristics and conditions of all actors will take us to become flexible and fair so that no disadvantage conditions are generated. The collaboration by the generation of learning communities might enrich multidisciplinary and interinstitutional growth.

No doubt, one of the situations that has been evident is the one referring to the great gaps that educational institutions have between each other, between educational systems, and between countries. Education is a social good, in an everyday changing context, and that requires us to form students for decision making; to do so, and to face this complexity, the first thing to defeat is change resistance.

Informal Education and Media

After the WHO came to the conclusion that COVID-19 could be considered as a pandemic, country leaders took preventive measures and required the aid of media to spread them, since society refers its attention to established issues, and, mainly, media can minimize or maximize a crisis situation. With the correct use, these could avoid wrong information called “infodemic”, and so society can follow the recommendations to reduce contagions and not to saturate capacity of health services.

The challenge for the media was to inform not having specialized journalists in the covering of science and health issues, since most of them have a conventional formation and even self-taught, especially in small cities. Before sending the message that could educate society, the issuer must understand that message, which carries to simplify terminology, understand the function of the human body, virus and vaccinations. The challenge increases due to studies and numbers that are continually being updated and it is necessary to reevaluate the situation and interview more than one expert to confirm information.

The learning process relates with the creation, emission, circulation and reception of messages. Uncertainty originates the proper mean to listen and learn. During phase one, media carried reflexive acting in society to adopt prevention measures. Creativity in the design of the messages helped in the re-learning of hand wash and data journalism by showing the effectiveness of social distancing. Through positive journalism, inspiring stories kept hope in society, awaking solidarity and attempting the avoidance of stigmatization from those who get the disease or those who work in the health sector.

Repetitive messages help solving doubts to sectors of the population who are integrated as users of the media that has gained their trust, and also to generate interest, value the level of importance to adopt or reject it, therefore the speaker of the health Ministry repeats three times “Stay home” during the press conferences.

The public health crisis started to expand to other sec-tors, this context drove into informal education not only to the population, but also for some media that started connecting to audiences, who had the opportunity to read and listen to them, understand their doubt, an incentive to increase the doses of ethics and social responsibility. The scoop stopped having value, and transnational collaboration through groups located in social networks was considered, in order to share with colleagues, and know the reaches and limitations of sanity measures and so to accomplish a solution journalism. Journalists learned to protect themselves to cover the note and those who stay home learn other internet tools.

The pandemic has re-educated globally and has conducted to reflection, what other learnings will it leave us?

Public communication of science

Thirty days were enough for the WHO to declare the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak an emergency of public health of international relevance. In a minor period of time and parallel to the virus, virtual networks worked to disseminate great amounts of news, ideas, videos, memes, images of known and unknown origins, that stated the precautions that should be implemented to avoid contagion and those that developed and justified, at their own style, the most unusual affirmations on the creation of the new coronavirus; the post-truth apparatus started to move.

The growing pandemic not only revealed the fragility of the health systems in different countries, but it also evidenced the need to have qualified personnel to inform veraciously and clearly, the challenge that COVID-19 represents. The sanitary crisis challenge of 2020 came to mobile devices of millions of people through the news, hundreds of these with no valid background nor scientific evidence that could corroborate the published information.

The proliferation of Fake News symbolizes a panic, hysteria, collective and desinformation pandemic, these publications are distinguished for submitting more about emotional rather than rational aspects, substituting the journalistic rigor for the demand of immediacy, which are linked to economic, ideological and political aims.

Nonetheless, in the center of the COVID-19 scenario the reflection and scientific work were placed as the most secure option before the uncertainty on public health, hence opening a discussion on the formation of scientists in communication matter, but also the training of journalists in the scientific area. The pandemic spotlighted the need of a new articulation between the communication, science and politics, where through the structures and practices of public communication of science, the disinformation, myths, half-truths and outbreaks of coronavirus are counteracted.

The sanitary crisis of 2020 is a valuable opportunity to pursue the commitment of the State and the educational institutions with the production of scientific knowledge and public communication of science, it has to be understood that the progress that nations require comes from societies that are capable to interpret and apply new knowledge. We must remember that social inequities that prevail in the world limits individuals to access homogenously to education, which converts communication projects of science in an approachable door for population to know and learn. The challenge consists in democratize knowledge in order to establish the basis of social transformations and hence construct a scientific culture for decision making.

Open Access and Open Science

Given the need to fight and stop COVID-19, the whole world has solidarized and from one moment to another, the main objective of Open Science Policy has been fulfilled. Most of the consortiums of Database and subscription magazines have freed their articles for consultation and open access information exchange. In context, research articles normally take several months in publishing, this means that to overcome the pandemic more than a decade to find a cure. However, open access data about COVID-19 are being given by federal agencies, public consortiums and private entities, available free of charge for world researchers. It has allowed an unprecedented exchange of data and faster research than in any other case in history. For having an idea on the amount of data that are now in open access, a centralized deposit of information at individual level with patients with COVID-19 including their travel history, location, symptoms and informed dates of initiation, dates of confirmation and basic demographic data. These data are openly available and regularly updated (around two times a day). On one hand, the CRUE, BUCLE, Bugalicia, CBUA, CSIC, CSUC, G9, Madroño Consortium and Uniris have signed the “Statement on open and sustainable knowledge” on March 27th 2020. In such declaration it is manifested that scientific knowledge is world heritage and the current world needs it to be accessible, understanding that scientific communication has its costs and that open does not mean free. On the other hand, the Committee on Data of the International Science Council (CODATA) along with GO FAIR, RDA and WDS (the four main data international organizations) freed the federate data repositories of COVID-19, called Virus Outbreak Data Network (VODAN) with the aim to optimize the new reality of science based on data. The White House and a coalition of leader research groups have together prepared the Open Research Dataset COVID-19 (CORD-19), a resource with more than 52,000 academic articles, including 41,000 of full text on COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 and related coronaviruses. Another example of open science on the pandemic is the NextStrain tool that uses genomic data to analyze evolution of organisms that cause disease in real time. Hence we are in front of a test, which the pandemic COVID-19 represents for our scientific system and for our investigation and data infrastructures. However, this open access has a deadline: the end of the pandemic, as it has happened in other time.

Technology and Innovation

We face a pandemic in a world that twirls at great speed, and it was propagated aggressively, giving us little time to be prepared. Fortunately, in Mexico we had a month to prepare prevention and safety regulations for the families.

Interconnected industry has been present and has set a historic milestone in the way information is shared for the production of inventions or improvement of products to treat infected patients. From a simple mask to technical plans and methods for the production of a respiratory ventilator and more.

In a complete globalized world, it is impressive how we can see the improvement of a product day after day, from Spain to Italy, Argentina and the USA, bouncing like a ball, transforming in the air as a more efficient and improved product, setting through the internet the prototypes and technological developments at the reach of all the world for its analysis and engineering in reverse.

The pandemic of COVID-19 has come to reinforce the idea that it is important to support the technological infrastructure since it represents an educational and productive investment in the future. Hence, businessmen in charge of technological developments and innovations have defined their priorities in three phases. Phase 1: Survival; Phase 2: Economic Recovery; Phase 3: habitual businesses in the new paradigm, after the crisis.

Potential Contributions of Chemical Engineering

Since the discoveries of Louis Pasteur with the development of the “germ theory of disease” of infectious diseases, it was possible to identify in certainty that bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoa are the cause of many diseases. So that when the agent causing the disease was identified, the development of chemical and/or biological compounds to fight against the pathogens such as vaccinations and antibiotics was possible. Nevertheless, the escalation of this processes is fundamental for the economic and technical viability of these chemical products, fundamental work of chemical engineering.

Fundamental processes such as the reproduction of the synthetic transferred route, optimization at laboratory scale of performance or selectiveness, evaluation of security parameters, transfer of process to pilot plant to evaluate the behavior in the scale-up and the implementation of necessary improvements to guarantee scalability. It is all performed within quality, security and hygiene regulations. In a research laboratory, a new product is being developed, the chemical engineer is the trained professional to carry out this new product to an industrial scale; analyzing reaction conditions and influence factors to define the necessary equipment and propose the mass production process. The task of process scale-up is one of the most important during the design of a plant and during its normal operation. Due to the fact that some production results are only known at low scale, but the process at great scale must be designed for the production to be profitable.

It is for sure, for the COVID-19 and other diseases, the use of disinfectants and the improvement in the quality of hygiene in water and food are in great part the responsible of the improvement in our life expectations. SARS-CoV-2, such as other viruses, have a lipid layer that covers and protects them. It has been identified that such virus can remain in surfaces such as metal, glass or plastic up to nine days. Some sanitizing and disinfecting agents can reduce inefficiency of the virus within 1 minute, such as ethylic alcohol (ethanol) at 62-71 %, hydrogen peroxide (0.5 %) or sodium hypochlorite (0.1 %). Even soaps eliminate the fat layer that covers the virus causing the destruction. Therefore, an effective disinfection of the surface can help assure an early contention and prevent a major viral propagation. So, efforts made by the government and superior education institutions to generate sanitizing products (antibacterial gel, for example) are crucial before the high demand of this products, with good quality and enough quantities.

Potential contributions of Electronic Engineering

Electronics is a branch of applied physics that studies the phenomenon of electrons movement and electronically charged particles in materials. In engineering, electronic is a specialization in charge of developing devices that perform different tasks. Amongst basic functions that an electronic device can perform, is the one of amplifying or softening an electric signal, allowing or blocking the passing of an electric current through a channel in function to a control voltage, storage of electric charge by a determined time, etc. In extended arrangements, electronic devices can perform complex functions, such as conversion and monitoring of physical variables, the mathematical treatment of signals and automatization of processes.

Electronic has found a source of development in the medical area and it has become into a fundamental tool that helps health personnel to become more effective in their work. To name a few examples, ultrasound systems have the capacity to scan the interior of the human body and form tridimensional images, or magnetic resonance machines for the detection of anomalies in the brain. In the pandemic for SARS-CoV-2 virus, electronic devices were used for control and mitigation of the disease, for example, measuring body temperature of people who were suspects is made through a thermal detector that uses bolometers to obtain punctual temperature or a thermal image, with no need of physical contact with the patient’s skin. Another example is the monitor devices in the ICU beds, where a precise control of vital essential signs of the patient and emitting automatic alarms in case of the vital signs measured are outside the secure ranges. In the analysis area, a fundamental equipment for the diagnostic of the COVID-19 is the thermocycler used in qPCR tests. Its function is to maintain temperature values during the whole analysis process of nucleic acids, RNA in the case of SARS-CoV-2.

The use of electronic in the health area is not only limited to the direct attention of patients, but it is also present in the systems that process information, their communication, data storage, projections, etc. All this infrastructure, which has been developed in the last century, is one of the best tools we have to face pandemics such as COVID-19.

Technology and Innovation in the diagnostic of laboratory

The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic has governments and biomedical research centers implementing necessary molecular diagnoses for the early detection of the severe acute respiratory syndrome of COVID-19. The task has not been easy, using bioinformatics, statistical methods, and standardization of molecular methods, enhancing the importance of science and technology in the development of new strategies for the control of this disease in a rapid and efficient way.

It was until January 2020 when the sequence of the genome of the new coronavirus was determined and known, starting the development of diagnostic tests based in the detection of RNA of this emerging virus. The most used method is the chain reaction of the polymerase in real time with retrotranscription (qRT-PCR), for being sensible and specific; however, this brought important challenges for laboratories, such as the supply of “primers” and probes, the acquisition of RNA extraction kits and the collection of positive controls necessary for carrying the test, due to the high demand of these, uncertainty in diverse laboratories about feasibility to perform these processes has been present.

Medical evaluation of individuals, high resolution computerized tomography (HRTC) and thorax X ray images have been invaluable tools for detecting false positives of the infection of COVID-19, and has had great use as complementary method to qRT-PCR, which up to this moment, is the only valid and accepted technology to diagnose the presence of SARS-CoV-2; in addition, high-throughput sequencing (HTS) has been used in different countries as diagnostic technology; however, it is a very expensive technique and mainly used for research, since it can detect several variants of SARS-CoV-2.

Serological tests of antibody detection can be used in a close future as rapid tests for the detection of antigens and antibodies anti- SARS-CoV2; however, they have not been valid, the main reason being that up to this moment, there are no monoclonal antibodies. Once this type of highly specific molecules are developed, they will be validated and used in tests like conventional ELISA or chips that would allow us to detect antibodies level type IgM or IgG in blood, serum or plasma against antigens of SARS-CoV-2. The advantages of these methodologies, unlike qRT-PCR is their low cost; besides, asymptomatic patients or those who had previous infection could be easily detected, and also the reliability of vaccinations developed against SARS-CoV-2 could be verified.

The molecular or serological diagnostic against the virus has proven to be a very powerful tool for the control of the disease, and has allowed the implementation of sanitary, economic and public policy measures to fight this pandemic.

New Technologies with application in health

The investigation and consulting firm Gartner performs every year and analysis on the technological trends that has the potential of a substantial disruption, and they are organized in two categories: spaces centered in people and smart species. Amongst these technologies we have artificial intelligence (AI), internet of things (IoT) and virtual and augmented realities. The current global pandemic tests emerging technologies to find practical solutions when using them. Examples are the use of artificial intelligence for interpreting X-Ray plates, applying neuronal networks, using deep learning techniques for image recognition, and distinguish pulmonary damage due to coronavirus that provokes common pneumonia, with a precision level of over 95 % Thanks to the IoT, thermal and great concentration cameras are used in public places in order to monitor temperature of users that surpass 37.3 °C of up to 100 people per minute, to prevent probable infection cases.

In the Chinese cities of Shenzhen, Chengdu and Shanghai, policemen are using helmets with a display of augmented reality, an infrared detector of temperature to analyze people with fever or high temperature, and Wi-Fi, Blutetooth and 5G to transmit data and report to the nearest hospital. They are also equipped with facial recognition technology, and the helmet can also show the name of the person in the screen, as well as his medical history. On the other hand, there is training by virtual reality to simulate the use of protection equipment to emergencies such as COVID-19, hence avoiding to exposing doctors. Because of the lockdown, virtual reality offers educational experiences at home, such as Google Earth VR or immersion 360 videos to perform virtual trips around the world. Besides, virtual reality allows us to have multiple solutions to create interactive telework, collaborative meetings and tele-education, to be present, although not physically, fulfilling health demands and stop the infection curve. The potential of all of these emergent technologies will be unblocked with the new 5G wireless net that will increase velocity, capability and connectivity, however, interdisciplinary collaboration will be more important, and it will help develop investigation projects and solutions to the great challenges we now face.

Importance of Intellectual Property

There is no doubt that scientific research is the engine that benefits innovation and technology in different knowledge areas, in this so called “Knowledge Society”. This generation of knowledge is susceptible to obtain Intellectual Property (IP) rights that allow the owner of any legal form (patents, utility models, branches, or author rights) to obtain an economic benefit from them. Legal protection that IP plays an important role in our society, which promotes progress and wellbeing of countries, and the investment of resources that support the new creations, this innovation and transfer of technology is promoted; and economic growth is stimulated, which translates into employment generation, industries and companies’ creation.

Currently, the world is living a pandemic that is causing industries, companies, pharmaceutical laboratories, higher education institutes, research centers and independent people, to be intensively working in the search of responses that give solutions to social problems that affect us with the presence of SARS-CoV-2.

The exclusivity of IP is great opportunity for creators to generate economic resources thanks to the contributions they are making. Many multidisciplinary groups are working in projects that help reduce the effects of this virus, making masks, ventilators, stretchers, Apps, diagnostic tests and many more. No doubt, these contributions are susceptible to protection and also will allow obtaining economic benefits. However, in the case of vaccinations patents, such as in the case of SARS-CoV-2, this exclusiveness must not be the barrier that stops possible solutions of the world sanitary emergency we are now facing. Industrial Property Law of Mexico is very noble, and in art. 77 mentions that due to emergency or national security causes, including serious diseases declared as priority by the Consejo de Salubridad General (CSG) and the Instituto Mexicano de la Propiedad Industrial (IMPI), will determine that the exploitation of certain patent areas must be made through the concession of licenses of public usefulness to guarantee and make accessible the production and distribution. In the cases of serious diseases such as national emergency cases, pharmaceutical accredited companies will be able to request a concession of the license of public usefulness to develop vaccinations before the IMPI, previous authorization of the CSG. In addition, a reasonable amount of the profits that belong the owner of the patent will be established.

The IP is the most important tool for the creators of these proposals, derived from the needs generated by the pandemic COVID-19, whether they are of great social impact, but mainly with legal certainty and the aim of activate the economy based in knowledge. Aspiring countries as Mexico go from one economy based in manufacture, with an economic model based on “mind-facture”. We hope the latter is one of the good things this health, socio-economic and humanistic crisis leaves us.


fn1Cite this paper: Toledo-Ibarra et al., (2020). The COVID-19 pandemic from the multidisciplinary vision of 28 University Professors of Nayarit, Mexico. Revista Bio Ciencias 7, e976. doi: https://doi.org/10.15741/revbio.07.e976

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Revista Bio Ciencias, Año 10, vol. 6,  Enero 2019. Sistema de Publicación Continua editada por la Universidad Autónoma de Nayarit. Ciudad de la Cultura “Amado Nervo”,  Col. Centro,  C.P.: 63000, Tepic, Nayarit, México. Teléfono: (01) 311 211 8800, ext. 8922. E-mail: revistabiociencias@gmail.com, revistabiociencias@yahoo.com.mx, http://revistabiociencias.uan.mx. Editor responsable: Dr. Manuel Iván Girón Pérez. No. de Reserva de derechos al uso exclusivo 04-2010-101509412600-203, ISSN 2007-3380, ambos otorgados por el Instituto Nacional de Derechos de Autor. Responsable de la última actualización de este número Lic. Brenda Isela Romero Mosqueda y Lic. Elvira Orlanda Yañez Armenta. Secretaria de Investigación y Posgrado, edificio Centro Multidisciplinario de Investigación Científica (CEMIC) 03 de la Universidad Autónoma de Nayarit. La opinión expresada en los artículos firmados es responsabilidad del autor. Se autoriza la reproducción total o parcial de los contenidos e imágenes, siempre y cuando se cite la fuente y no sea con fines de lucro.

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Fecha de última actualización 02 de Octubre de 2019

 

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