News & Perspective

May 18, 2009

May 18, 2009

H1N1 FLU BREAKING NEWS: Surge in Japan, case counts, latest US death, trends in young, virus-like particles show promise

Japan reports spike in novel H1N1 casesHealth officials voiced concern over a surge in novel H1N1 influenza cases in Japan, particularly among young people, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today. Case numbers rose from 4 to 129 over the weekend, leading to more than 2,000 school closures. Many of the new cases are reported from Kobe and Osaka, where officials believe the virus spread during a high school volleyball tournament.

Feb 13, 2009

Feb 13, 2009

WHO picks new B strain for 2009-10 flu vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – Because of a suboptimal match between this year's flu vaccine and circulating influenza B viruses, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended changing one of the three strains used in flu vaccines for the Northern Hemisphere next fall and winter.

Nov 11, 2008

Nov 11, 2008

US to give FAO $44 million for avian flu control

(CIDRAP News) – The United States will contribute another $44.4 million to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO's) campaign to prevent and control avian influenza, the FAO announced today.

Oct 31, 2008

Oct 31, 2008

Encouraging results reported for injectable flu drug

(CIDRAP News) – BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc. reported encouraging results this week in two phase 2 trials of its injectable antiviral drug, peramivir, a potential new treatment for influenza.

Peramivir is a neuraminidase inhibitor, like the licensed antivirals oseltamivir (Tamiflu), which is taken orally, and zanamivir (Relenza), inhaled as a powder.

Jul 17, 2008

Jul 17, 2008

GAO looks abroad for food-safety oversight lessons

(CIDRAP News) – The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently released a report examining the results several developed nations and the European Union achieved when they consolidated oversight of food safety in a single agency, a step often advocated in the United State for solving some of the problems linked to contaminated imported and domestic food.

Mar 17, 2008

Mar 17, 2008

CDC pandemic exercise highlights drug, mitigation, travel issues

(CIDRAP News) – In the early stages of an influenza pandemic, cases are spreading among migrant workers in Michigan. The state's health department has a supply of antiviral drugs from the federal stockpile and is using them to treat the sick, but, concerned about breaking federal rules, is withholding them from others exposed to the virus—thereby missing a chance to help contain it.

Feb 01, 2008

Feb 01, 2008

Europe says Tamiflu-resistant virus seen in 9 countries

(CIDRAP News) – European officials yesterday reported more evidence that one of the three types of seasonal influenza viruses is showing resistance to oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and said this represents the first clear sign that the resistant variant can spread.

Nov 15, 2007

Nov 15, 2007

THE PANDEMIC VACCINE PUZZLE Can we vaccinate enough people in time to matter?

Maryn McKennaContributing Writer

(CIDRAP News) – This in-depth article investigates the prospects for development of vaccines to head off the threat of an influenza pandemic posed by the H5N1 avian influenza virus. Its seven parts put advances in vaccine technology in perspective by illuminating the formidable barriers to producing an effective and widely usable vaccine in a short time frame.

Mar 22, 2007

Mar 22, 2007

WHO: Six developing countries may get flu vaccine plants

Editor's note: Contrary to this story, information obtained Mar 23 from the World Health Organization and from another news report indicated that Thailand had no plans to withhold H5N1 virus samples. See link at end of story for more information.

Dec 08, 2006

Dec 08, 2006

Donors pledge $475 million for global avian flu fight

(CIDRAP News) – International donors at a conference in Mali today pledged US $475 million to battle H5N1 avian influenza, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Dr. David Nabarro, the UN's avian and pandemic influenza coordinator, said he was pleased with the amount, even though has been saying that $500 million to $750 million per year will be needed for the next 2 to 3 years.

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