News & Perspective

Aug 21, 2012

Aug 21, 2012

H3N2v infections spark debate about barring pigs from fairs

(CIDRAP News) – The type of flu transmission occurring mainly in young people directly exposed to pigs at fairs this summer is unprecedented, and health officials should consider keeping pigs away from the events, according to one infectious disease expert who has gone on record with his concerns.

Aug 17, 2012

Aug 17, 2012

Public health officials respond to critique of BioWatch

In the wake of a newspaper investigation that questioned the value of the federal BioWatch program for detecting dangerous airborne pathogens, some public health officials familiar with the program acknowledge that it's far from perfect, but they say it's not time to scrap it.

Aug 09, 2012

Aug 09, 2012

Illinois confirms novel H3N2 case as national total hits 152

(CIDRAP News) – The number of recent human cases of swine-origin variant H3N2 influenza (H3N2v) in recent weeks climbed to 152 today as Illinois reported its first case and Indiana announced more infections.

Jul 31, 2012

Jul 31, 2012

Fauci urges continuing pause on risky H5N1 studies

(CIDRAP News) – The head of the US agency that funds much influenza research today called on scientists to continue their voluntary moratorium on certain kinds of potentially hazardous H5N1 research, saying they need to better address public concerns about the studies, according to news reports from a flu meeting in New York City.

Jul 27, 2012

Jul 27, 2012

Experts urge holding off on hazardous H5N1 studies

(CIDRAP News) – As leading influenza researchers prepare to meet in New York City next week, several eminent life-sciences authorities are calling for continuation of a moratorium on studies involving lab-modified H5N1 viruses with increased transmissibility, according to a story today in the British newspaper The Independent.

Jul 24, 2012

Jul 24, 2012

WHO offers some guidance on risky H5N1 studies

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) has offered some brief, general guidance on safety and security in research on laboratory-modified H5N1 viruses, mainly stressing that researchers should follow existing guidelines and gain authorization from their governments.

Jun 21, 2012

Jun 21, 2012

Fouchier study reveals changes enabling airborne spread of H5N1

(CIDRAP News) – A study showing that it takes as few as five mutations to turn the H5N1 avian influenza virus into an airborne spreader in mammals—and that launched a historic debate on scientific accountability and transparency—was released today in Science, spilling the full experimental details that many experts had sought to suppress out of concern that publishing them could lead to the unleashing of a dangerous virus.

May 04, 2012

May 04, 2012

NIH rejects charge it slanted the H5N1 agenda for NSABB

(CIDRAP News) – In a lengthy letter, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) official has rejected recent charges that the agency planned a biased meeting agenda in an effort to induce the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) to act as it did in voting for full publication of two much-debated studies on H5N1 virus transmissibility.

Apr 26, 2012

Apr 26, 2012

Senate committee seeks answers in H5N1 study debate

(CIDRAP News) – Spurred by events surrounding two controversial H5N1 transmission studies, a US Senate committee today questioned federal officials whose agencies have a stake in dual-use research of concern (DURC) about the procedures they use to spot possible bioterror threats.

Apr 20, 2012

Apr 20, 2012

NIH endorses recommendation to publish H5N1 studies

(CIDRAP News) – The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has endorsed the recommendations of its biosecurity advisory committee to publish the full versions of two studies describing lab-modified, mammalian-transmissible H5N1 flu viruses, NIH officials announced today.

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