News & Perspective

Dec 30, 2005

Dec 30, 2005

H5N1 avian flu viruses: What's in a name?

(CIDRAP News) – Last month, officials in Italy and Canada aroused concern by announcing they had found an H5N1 influenza virus in wild birds. Neither country had previously been troubled by any reports of the virulent H5N1 virus that has been plaguing poultry and occasionally sickening and killing humans in Asia.

But in both cases, health officials said the virus was not dangerous and was unrelated to the H5N1 virus in Asia.

Dec 09, 2005

Dec 09, 2005

Human H5N1 cases reported in China, Thailand

(CIDRAP News) – Two more human cases of H5N1 avian influenza have been confirmed, one in a Chinese woman who has recovered and the other in a 5-year-old Thai boy who died Dec 7, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced today.

The cases increase the human toll of the virus over the past 2 years to 137 cases, including 70 deaths, according to the WHO. Exposure to poultry is the suspected cause in both of the latest cases.

Nov 22, 2005

Nov 22, 2005

Briton has second vCJD case found in US

(CIDRAP News) – A second case of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) has been reported in a US resident, although American authorities said he is thought to have contracted the illness in his native Britain.

Nov 11, 2005

Nov 11, 2005

Avian flu: human case in Thailand, infected bird in Kuwait

(CIDRAP News) – Thailand has reported its 21st human case of H5N1 avian influenza, while an infected flamingo was found in Kuwait and new poultry outbreaks surfaced in China, according to news reports today.

An 18-month-old boy in Bangkok was diagnosed with the H5N1 virus today, but he was already well on the way to recovery, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report quoting Thawat Sunthrajarn, Thailand's disease control director.

Oct 28, 2005

Oct 28, 2005

Chiron wins H5N1 vaccine contract; WHO says virus is changing

(CIDRAP News) – The US government has awarded Chiron Corp. a $62.5 million contract to make a vaccine for H5N1 avian influenza as part of efforts to prepare for a possible human flu pandemic.

Sep 23, 2005

Sep 23, 2005

Flu vaccination benefits for elderly called modest

(CIDRAP News) – Researchers who reviewed 64 studies report that influenza vaccination is only modestly beneficial for elderly people overall, with nursing home residents benefiting more than people living on their own.

Sep 13, 2005

Sep 13, 2005

Low-pathogenic avian flu viruses can infect humans

(CIDRAP News) – European researchers have reported what they call the first evidence that low-pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) viruses—not just highly pathogenic (HPAI) strains like H5N1—can infect humans.

Jun 27, 2005

Jun 27, 2005

Japan has H5N2 avian flu outbreak

(CIDRAP News) – A Japanese farm is expected to cull most of its 25,000 chickens to prevent the spread of a highly pathogenic avian influenza, identified as A H5N2, that has killed about 800 chickens, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today.

Apr 13, 2005

Apr 13, 2005

Pandemic flu virus from 1957 mistakenly sent to labs

(CIDRAP News) – The revelation that samples of the influenza virus that caused the flu pandemic of 1957-58 were inadvertently sent to thousands of laboratories has raised fears of a new pandemic and triggered an urgent effort to destroy the samples.

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.

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