Article about gorillas and COVID-19 has been withdrawn
Researchers conducting the study on how COVID-19 can affect the population of wild gorillas have discovered an error within the study and has chosen to withdraw the scientific publication. Therefore, SDU has also chosen to withdraw the article about the study as of 6 December 2021.
The reason is that the researchers have been made aware of an important error in their analysis. Specifically, instead of using human infection fatality rates (IFRs) as a reference for their simulations, they used case fatality rates (CFRs) from studies published early during the pandemic in Wuhan, China, and Italy, adjusted to the longevity of the mountain gorillas.
Case fatality rates, particularly those early during the pandemic, have been found to be considerably higher than the actual infection fatality rates. After repeating their analyses with this updated information, the researchers have found that, by using the adjusted CFRs instead of IFRs, their published results significantly overestimated the chances of extinction of the population should a Covid-19 outbreak occur.
Although the revised findings are important for mountain gorilla conservation, they substantially change the conclusions of the study. In light of these important discrepancies, the authors deemed it necessary to retract this study.