Category Archives: Influenza

Pandemic influenza | Avian flu | bird flu | Spanish flu | SARS
Include any kind of influenza where there may be a possibility of transmission to humans.

Herberton Hospital deaths: Disease control questioned amid hMPV outbreak

ABC News Jesse Dorsett 5 February 2016

Families of patients who have died amid a respiratory viral outbreak at far north Queensland’s Herberton Hospital say it has poor infectious disease controls.
Seven people have died at the 36-bed facility this year; one tested positive for human metapneumovirus (hMPV) while the others displayed symptoms, Cairns and Hinterland Hospital Service said.
The coroner is investigating who out of the seven died with the virus.
Another four in the hospital are also showing symptoms.

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Infant-friendly flu vaccine developed with key protein

(University of Missouri-Columbia 19 January 2016) According to the World Health Organization, influenza causes serious illness among millions of people each year, resulting in 250,000 to 500,000 deaths. Those most at risk include infants younger than six months, because they cannot be vaccinated against the disease. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri School of Medicine have identified a naturally occurring protein that, when added to the flu vaccine, may offer protection to babies during their first months of life.

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Hong Kong reports Avian Influenza case

BioPrepWatch 8 January 2016

The Centre for Health Protection of the Hong Kong Department of Health confirmed a case of Avian Influenza A(H7N9) in a 59-year-old patient on the mainland Jan. 1.

WHO advisory issued after China confirms bird flu cases

BioPrepWatch Reports 7 January 2016

The National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) of China reported two confirmed cases of avian influenza A (H5N6) to the World Health Organization (WHO) between Dec. 30 and Jan. 2.

The first reported case involved a 26-year-old female from Baoan District, Shenzhen City. Symptoms began Dec. 24.

A 40-year-old female from Duanzhou District, Zhaoqing City, was the second case. Symptoms first appeared on Dec. 22.

Both patients are hospitalized and in critical condition.

The WHO advises that the risk assessment for H5N6 has not changed for the areas indicated. Monitoring of the outbreaks continues.

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WHO details recent avian influenza cases in China

BioPrepWatch 23 December 2015

The National Health and Family Planning Commission of China (NHFPC) recently notified the World Health Organization (WHO) of two avian influenza cases.  According to the WHO, if this appearance of the virus follows the pattern of past outbreaks, there could be an increase of cases over the course of a few months.

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Why the flu vaccine is less effective in the elderly

(Cell Press 15 December 2015) Around this time every year, the flu virus infects up to one-fifth of the US population and kills thousands of people, many of them elderly. A study published by Cell Press on Dec. 15, 2015, in Immunity now explains why the flu vaccine is less effective at protecting older individuals. More broadly, the findings reveal novel molecular signatures that could be used to predict which individuals are most likely to respond positively to vaccination.

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A new approach to predict evolution of influenza viruses can enhance vaccine efficacy

(University of Helsinki 7 December 2015) New results from a study performed at the University of Helsinki, Finland, suggest that genomic information from circulating influenza viruses can help in producing more efficient seasonal vaccines. The researchers were able to develop a simple approach for reliable real-time tracking and prediction of viral evolution based on whole-genome sequences of influenza viruses.

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