News & Perspective

Dec 03, 2004

Dec 03, 2004

Departing HHS chief cites pandemic flu, food tampering as top concerns

(CIDRAP News) – In announcing his resignation today after 4 years as US Health and Human services (HHS) secretary, Tommy G. Thompson cited pandemic influenza and food biosecurity as two of his biggest worries.

Thompson, who presided over massive increases in federal spending for public health preparedness and biodefense research, said in response to a question, "There are two things that really worry me yet. The big one is pandemic flu."

Dec 02, 2004

Dec 02, 2004

Asian nations vow cooperation on avian flu

(CIDRAP News) – As public health ministers and officials from 13 Asian countries conferred in Bangkok last week on how to prevent the spread of H5N1 avian influenza, experts offered troubling predictions.

Nov 24, 2004

Nov 24, 2004

Recreated gene sheds light on lethality of 1918 flu virus

(CIDRAP News) – By recreating a key surface protein from the 1918 pandemic flu virus and testing its effects in mice, researchers have shown that the protein might have been an important reason for the virus's extraordinary ability to kill.

Nov 18, 2004

Nov 18, 2004

NIAID to map flu virus genomes

(CIDRAP News) – The federal government announced this week it is launching a campaign to map the genetic blueprint of thousands of human and avian influenza viruses in an effort to better understand how flu viruses evolve, spread, and cause disease.

Nov 17, 2004

Nov 17, 2004

Clinical trials of human H5N1 flu vaccine to start soon

(CIDRAP News) – Clinical trials of a vaccine designed to keep the H5N1 avian influenza virus from sparking a human flu pandemic will begin early in 2005, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) said this week.

Nov 15, 2004

Nov 15, 2004

Avian flu may portend a 1918-like pandemic, says Osterholm

(CIDRAP News) – The nature of the widespread avian influenza outbreaks in Asia points to the threat of a human flu pandemic that could rival the disastrous pandemic of 1918-1920, infectious disease expert Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, warned in a public forum in Minneapolis last week.

Nov 12, 2004

Nov 12, 2004

WHO says nations must fund work on pandemic flu vaccines

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization's top influenza expert warned at the end of a 2-day international meeting today that governments need to fund the development of vaccines to combat a feared flu pandemic that could kill millions of people, according to news services.

Nov 11, 2004

Nov 11, 2004

WHO: world has historic chance to gird for pandemic flu

(CIDRAP News) – The outbreak of H5N1 avian influenza in Asia gives the world its first opportunity to prepare a vaccine in advance for a potential pandemic strain of flu, the World Health Organization (WHO) said today as it convened a meeting of vaccine companies and health officials to consider the challenge.

Nov 01, 2004

Nov 01, 2004

WHO sets Nov 11 meeting on threat of flu pandemic

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) has called a Nov 11 "summit" meeting of health officials and vaccine companies to discuss how to confront what is seen as the growing risk that avian influenza will trigger a human flu pandemic.

Aug 31, 2004

Aug 31, 2004

Flu virus shows surprising resistance to oseltamivir

(CIDRAP News) – Influenza viruses in 18% of a group of Japanese children who were treated with oseltamivir (Tamiflu) developed resistance to the antiviral drug, which is viewed as one of the key defenses against pandemic influenza, according to a new report in The Lancet.

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