News & Perspective

Dec 19, 2008

Dec 19, 2008

With H1N1 resistance, CDC changes advice on flu drugs

(CIDRAP News) – Increased resistance to oseltamivir (Tamiflu), the leading influenza drug, has prompted federal health officials to change their advice about flu treatment, saying clinicians for now should consider using zanamivir (Relenza) or a combination of two drugs for patients suspected of having influenza A.

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.

Oct 29, 2008

Oct 29, 2008

Experts stress vigilance over emerging, unpredictable diseases

See related article posted today: "US urged to launch major campaign against emerging diseases"

– WASHINGTON, DC (CIDRAP News) – Health authorities must remain alert to new and renascent disease threats, experts warned this week at an international medical meeting.

Oct 28, 2008

Oct 28, 2008

Fifth case confirmed in South African viral outbreak

(CIDRAP News) – A fifth case has been confirmed in the recent outbreak of febrile illnesses caused by a mysterious virus in South Africa, and preliminary tests have supported earlier suspicions that it is new member of the arenavirus family, South African health officials announced recently.

Oct 27, 2008

Oct 27, 2008

Drug-resistant flu viruses cause growing concern

– WASHINGTON, DC (CIDRAP News) – Health officials worldwide are becoming increasingly concerned about influenza viruses' resistance to antiviral drugs, which can shut down a flu infection or mitigate symptoms. Flu antivirals are vital for reducing severe illness and death in average flu seasons and could be essential bulwarks against an influenza pandemic if one began.

Oct 13, 2008

Oct 13, 2008

Tests indicate an arenavirus in South African deaths

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) said today that preliminary tests indicate that an arenavirus—possibly a previously unknown one—is responsible for the mysterious febrile disease that killed three people in South Africa and has now sickened a fourth.

Oct 10, 2008

Oct 10, 2008

WHO: Mystery fever killed three in South Africa

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) today said a mysterious febrile disease that bears some resemblance to a viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF) has killed three people in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The WHO said the victims so far have tested negative for several VHFs and other infectious diseases, and no new cases have emerged since the latest death on Oct 5.

Aug 25, 2008

Aug 25, 2008

H1N1 flu viruses growing more resistant to Tamiflu

(CIDRAP News) – With influenza season well under way in the southern hemisphere, one of the three kinds of seasonal influenza virus is becoming increasingly resistant to the antiviral drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu), the World Health Organization (WHO) reported last week.

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