Flus - who needs 'em?

Warning: this blog is not a pick-me-upper. It is all about disease, namely, the flu. Yes, the length and strength of any flu season is difficult to predict, but it looks like we've done an extra bad job this year. Plus, the bird flu is gaining steam as it pounds through Europe and appears in a human-to-human form in Indonesia, where the bird flu has killed a hundred. And for you history buffs, I've included a lil' piece on the 1918 flu pandemic. Have fun.

CDC: Flu Season Getting Worse

ATLANTA (AP) — The flu season is getting worse, and U.S. health officials say it's partly because the flu vaccine doesn't protect against most of the spreading flu bugs. The flu shot is a good match for only about 40 percent of this year's flu viruses, officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday.

Spread Of 1918 Flu Pandemic Explained
ScienceDaily (2008-02-19) -- Researchers have explained why two mutations in the H1N1 avian flu virus were critical for viral transmission in humans during the 1918 pandemic outbreak that killed at least 50 million people. The team showed that the 1918 influenza strain developed two mutations in a surface molecule called hemagglutinin, which allowed it to bind tightly to receptors in the human upper respiratory tract.

Bird flu confirmed in dead swan
BBC -- Preliminary tests have confirmed the H5 avian flu virus in a sample from a swan found dead in Fife, health officials have revealed.

Indonesia reports 104th bird flu death
A 16-year-old Indonesian boy who died last week had bird flu, the health ministry said Saturday, bringing the toll to 104 in the nation worst hit by the disease.

No comments: