News tagged with swine flu pandemic
Genetics of flu susceptibility: Researchers find gene that can transform mild influenza to a life-threatening disease
A genetic finding could help explain why influenza becomes a life-threating disease to some people while it has only mild effects in others. New research led by the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute has identified for the first ...
Genetics Mar 25, 2012 | 4 / 5 (4) | 0 |
Research at Imperial College London examining influenza transmission in ferrets suggests that the virus can be passed on before the appearance of symptoms. If the finding applies to humans, it means that people pass on flu ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Aug 29, 2012 | 5 / 5 (3) | 0 |
A swine flu vaccine used in 2009-10 is linked to a higher risk of the sleeping disorder narcolepsy in children and teens in Sweden and Finland, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said Friday.
Medications Sep 21, 2012 | 4.7 / 5 (3) | 0
(AP)—Health officials say the flu season is winding down, and it has killed 105 children—about the average toll.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Mar 22, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 0
A vaccine used in Sweden in the 2009-2010 "swine flu" pandemic is linked to a higher risk of the sleeping disorder narcolepsy among under 30s, and not just children and teens as previously thought, a Swedish study showed ...
Medications Mar 26, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 0
(Medical Xpress)—An international team of bio-researchers has found that a mutant strain of the H5N1 influenza virus (created in a lab) has a 200-fold preference for binding with receptors in human cells, ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Apr 25, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 0 |
(HealthDay) -- Only 29 human cases of a new strain of "swine" flu have been identified in two years, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is making sure it's prepared should the H3N2 strain ...
Medications Aug 04, 2012 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2 |
The swine flu outbreak of winter 2009-2010 was much more widespread than was previously realised, research suggests.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Jun 08, 2011 | 5 / 5 (1) | 1 |
At least 32 people have been infected in a flare-up of the H1N1 swine flu virus in Nicaragua over the last week, according to the health ministry.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Oct 14, 2011 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
Scientists from the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) have discovered that an antigen common to most influenza viruses, and commonly referred to as matrix protein 2 (M2), when administered under the tongue could protect ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Dec 08, 2011 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
(Medical Xpress) -- Researchers at the University of Southampton, University of Oxford and Retroscreeen Virology Ltd have discovered a series of peptides, found on the internal structures of influenza viruses that could lead ...
Medical research Jan 31, 2012 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
(AP) -- Mexico's federal health secretary says swine flu cases in January have surpassed the number for all of 2011, a year when the virus barely appeared worldwide.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Jan 31, 2012 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
(HealthDay) -- U.S. health authorities on Thursday reported a large jump in the number of H3N2 "swine" flu cases in humans.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Aug 10, 2012 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |
(HealthDay)—Many U.S. schools are not prepared for another pandemic, according to a new study.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Aug 30, 2012 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
'Evil' scientists, deadly viruses and terrorist plots are usually the preserve of Hollywood blockbusters. But when it comes to pandemic influenza, it is the stuff of real life. As controversy about research into the H5N1 ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes Jan 28, 2013 | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
2009 flu pandemic
The 2009 flu pandemic is a global outbreak of a new strain of influenza virus, identified in April 2009, and commonly referred to as "swine flu". It is thought to be a mutation—more specifically, a reassortment—of four known strains of the influenza A virus, subtype H1N1: one endemic in (normally infecting) humans, one endemic in birds, and two endemic in pigs (swine). Experts assume the virus "most likely" emerged from pigs in Asia, and was carried to North America by infected persons. There is also evidence that the new strain had been circulating among pigs on other continents for years before infecting humans. Virtually all transmission is human to human, with cooked pork products safe to eat as the virus cannot be transmitted by eating foods.
The outbreak began in Mexico, and there is evidence that Mexico was already in the midst of an epidemic for months before the outbreak was recognized. Soon after, their government closed down most of Mexico City's public and private offices and facilities to help contain the spread. In early June, as the virus spread globally, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak to be a pandemic, while also noting that the virus has so far been of "moderate severity." The virus has continued to spread worldwide, especially in the Southern Hemisphere which was in its winter flu season, and to many less developed countries with limited healthcare systems. In July, because the virus was spreading internationally with "unprecedented speed", WHO announced that it would no longer require countries to submit reports of cases, but would continue to monitor "unusual events", such as outbreak clusters or surges. Laboratories were also becoming overwhelmed simply testing for the flu which was putting healthcare systems under stress.
The virus typically spreads from coughs and sneezes or by touching contaminated surfaces and then touching the nose or mouth. Symptoms are similar to those of seasonal flu, and may include fever, sneezes, sore throat, coughs, headache, and muscle or joint pains. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that most hospitalizations have been of people that also had underlying conditions such as asthma, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, or a weakened immune system. In an attempt to slow the spread of the illness, a number of countries, especially in Asia, have enforced strict quarantines of airline passengers showing flu symptoms, including passengers seated nearby any infected persons. A number of airlines have also begun pre-screening passengers before they travel.
WHO does not expect to have a full vaccine before the end of 2009, and if any is available before that time the supply will be limited, while some countries are hoping to have vaccines earlier. The CDC states that two or three vaccine injections will be required for maximum immunity from both the swine flu and seasonal flu. There is also concern that the virus could mutate later in the year and become more virulent and less susceptible to any new vaccine.
Although most cases worldwide have been mild, experts are still very concerned, partly due to the memory of the 1918 flu pandemic, which is thought to have killed between 40 million and 100 million people, and was preceded by a wave of milder cases in the spring. In addition, Dr Anne Schuchat from CDC thinks, "this is a virus that's capable of causing a spectrum of illness that includes severe complications and death". "It's very important we take this virus seriously".
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