News & Perspective

Dec 23, 2011

Dec 23, 2011

Fears about mutant H5N1 hinge on ferrets as flu model

(CIDRAP News) – In the influenza literature, it's a given that ferrets are the best animal model for influenza in humans. They show similar clinical signs of disease, such as fever, coughing, and sneezing, and flu viruses that spread among humans usually spread in ferrets as well.

Jan 23, 2012

Jan 23, 2012

Experts debate aspects of H5N1 transmission studies

(CIDRAP News) – More experts weighed in recently on various aspects of yet-unpublished H5N1 avian influenza transmissibility studies that have raised concerns about the risk of an intentional or accidental release of the mutant pathogens, as well as worries about scientific censorship.

Jan 31, 2012

Jan 31, 2012

NSABB: Studies show how H5N1 can jump natural barrier

(CIDRAP News) – The core of a US biosecurity advisory board's concern about two controversial, as-yet-unpublished studies on H5N1 viruses is that the studies have shown how to remove the apparent natural barrier that keeps the viruses from spreading efficiently in mammals, members of the board said in statements published today.

Feb 03, 2012

Feb 03, 2012

Live debate airs major divisions in H5N1 research battle

(CIDRAP News) – The controversy over research about potentially dangerous H5N1 viruses heated up last night in a New York City debate that featured some of the leading voices exchanging blunt comments on the alleged risks and benefits of publishing or withholding the full details of the studies.

Feb 08, 2012

Feb 08, 2012

Experts: Dual-use H5N1 studies may not hasten pandemic response

(CIDRAP News) – International experts say that, while experiments on H5N1 avian flu transmission in mammals are important, publishing full details of such "dual-use" studies likely will not speed up the vaccine response in a pandemic, according to a news report and editorial in Nature today.

Feb 15, 2012

Feb 15, 2012

Forum: H5N1 research tussle shows need for clear policies

(CIDRAP News) – The acute need for clearer policies concerning the handling of potentially risky life-sciences research was the main theme that came across today in a Harvard forum on the controversy over studies on H5N1 avian influenza viruses with increased transmissibility.

Mar 06, 2012

Mar 06, 2012

Research on contagious H5N1 viruses: Space suits needed?

(CIDRAP News) – Using the highest level of safety precautions for research on H5N1 viruses that can spread in mammals may slow the advance of science, but it's worth it in view of the grave risks involved, say some commentators writing today in mBio, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM).

Apr 02, 2012

Apr 02, 2012

Major players weigh implications of NSABB H5N1 reversal

(CIDRAP News) – A federal advisory board's reversal on publishing two controversial H5N1 studies is poised to shift discussions on the topic that continue in London this week, as more participants in the debate weigh in following the Mar 30 announcement.

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