News & Perspective

Jan 21, 2005

Jan 21, 2005

Smuggled animals may bring disease

(CIDRAP News) – The next infectious disease to enter the United States might cross the border taped to a traveler's leg or tucked snugly under a tourist's hat.

Smuggling of wild animals has always posed hazards to human health, but the stakes may be getting higher today, given the role of animal hosts in lethal outbreaks such as SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and avian influenza.

Mar 11, 2005

Mar 11, 2005

Vietnam avian flu cases spark concern as WHO gives numbers

(CIDRAP News) – The recent series of cases of avian influenza in a single province in Vietnam has increased concern about whether the nature of the illness is changing.

Mar 25, 2005

Mar 25, 2005

Two studies boost hopes for pandemic flu vaccines

(CIDRAP News) – Two new studies give reason to hope that vaccines prepared in advance could be of some help in combating an influenza pandemic.

May 19, 2005

May 19, 2005

World Health Assembly addresses pandemic flu

(CIDRAP News) – The world has an unprecedented warning that pandemic influenza may be imminent, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a report that urges swift action to prevent global illness and death.

A WHO report, "Strengthening pandemic influenza preparedness and response," is slated for discussion tomorrow at the organization's annual World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva.

May 26, 2005

May 26, 2005

Nature urges world to take pandemic threat seriously

(CIDRAP News) – The British magazine Nature trained a floodlight on the threat of an influenza pandemic today with a collection of 10 articles that explore the danger and possible remedies and demand a more serious global response.

"The level of current efforts is not commensurate with the threat we face," the editors write. "The time for diplomacy and denial is over. It is time for advocacy and action."

Jun 20, 2005

Jun 20, 2005

China's alleged use of human flu drug in poultry questioned

(CIDRAP News) – International health agencies are questioning China about a report that the country has used a human antiviral drug in poultry for years, thereby causing the H5N1 influenza virus to become resistant to the drug.

Jul 06, 2005

Jul 06, 2005

Wild birds could spread H5N1 virus beyond Asia, reports say

(CIDRAP News) – The recent outbreak of H5N1 avian influenza among wild waterfowl in western China could provide a launching pad to spread the disease throughout Asia and beyond, according to two reports published by leading science journals today.

Sep 16, 2005

Sep 16, 2005

US pushes international efforts to thwart flu pandemic

(CIDRAP News) – US officials this week promoted international efforts to prepare for a potential influenza pandemic, announcing an international flu surveillance partnership and promising aid to Vietnam for avian and human flu surveillance.

Oct 11, 2005

Oct 11, 2005

Experts cite differences between H5N1 and ordinary flu

(CIDRAP News) – A recent and extensive review of research on H5N1 avian influenza in humans shows the illness differs from ordinary flu in several ways, besides the most obvious fact that it is far more deadly.

The report by a World Health Organization (WHO) committee says avian flu may have a longer incubation period and is more likely to cause diarrhea than typical flu viruses are, among other differences.

Oct 18, 2005

Oct 18, 2005

Roche to build Tamiflu plant in US

(CIDRAP News) – The Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche announced today it would build a plant in the United States to make oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and also consider licensing other companies to make the drug in the face of a possible flu pandemic.

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