Monday, November 13, 2006

November 13 Flu Update (Update)

Two new human cases in Indonesia, with a 2 1/2 year old boy dying of the disease.

ProMed on these Indonesian cases.

This is not the first report of its kind--Tamiflu causes delirium in some patients. As before, these reports are coming out of Japan, but they have caused the FDA to change the warning labels. (I wonder how this will effect Roche's marketing plan using children's movies for Tamiflu).

The added precaution comes after reports of more than 100 new cases of delirium, hallucinations and other unusual psychiatric behavior in children treated with the drug. Most were Japanese children.

Egypt expects more bird flu outbreaks this winter.

Effect Measure with an excellent article on a journal piece about how the flu spreads. As he writes...

The depths of our ignorance in this age of sophisticated molecular biology is truly impressive.

More warnings in Britain that say that companies in Britain are vulnerable to the bird flu.

Vets from Romania are in Delaware to study bird flu control at the University of Delaware, which has formed a group to lead the fight.

This news report says that governments are pledging to use the army to protect GSK vaccine plants in the event of a pandemic.

"People don't realise the disorder which comes from a scary event such as a true pandemic. It is not going to be the time to line up to your friendly pharmacist because there will be hundreds of people there. There will be panic episodes," Mr Garnier said.

Here's little profile on the guy in charge of the strategic national stockpile.


At 4:40 PM, Anonymous Wayne said...

On the comments that we don't know that much about the flu virus I would have to agree that this is true and the virus is in the drivers seat. In our attempt to create sophisticated flu vaccines we are succeding in creating sophisticatad flu strains whic evolve to pursue their relentless killing habits even more efficiantly.Recombinomics says that in Indonesia most of the h5n1 does not originate from birds and nobody know from where it originates. I believe that we are in a worse position than in 1918 and our only hope is if the virus mutates to a milder form. I look to see if there are any unusual epidemics among hospital staff. Then I will worry and untill then I will prepare.

At 7:50 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


My wife is really angry now. Especially after I informed her that if I have to take Tamiflu, I may be aggressive, suicidal and delirious, according to latest FDA warning. She believes my behavior is already somewhat abnormal (OCD), but my use of Tamiflu during a pandemic may push her over the edge. I'm in deep trouble because of the FDA. She's mad at the Japanese too. She insists that I sell my twenty year old Toyota truck, even though I pointed out that it was probably assembled in Kentucky someplace. I may have to tough things out with the recalled ibuprofen that I never discarded, instead of taking Tamiflu.

On a more scientific note, I have a little difficulty wrapping my brain around the real significance of the Revere Effective Measure article on the different modes and mechanics of influenza transmission. I'm not a physician or a virologist, but it seems to me that if the government would free up a bunch of grant money and tap into the biotech and nanotech incubator companies around the U.S. - fundamental issues like this might get resolved rather quickly.

But what do I know, I'm a simple sheep herder by profession. Wayne, I understand your frustration, if you want to hide out on my ranch if things get rough, give me a shout.


At 8:22 PM, Blogger Orange said...

The virus is always in the driver's seat--the humans are always playing catch up. That's the strange and terrible beauty of the whole thing.

Wulfgang, perhaps you should try sauerkraut in place of the Tamiflu.

At 8:44 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


I believe you're on to something with the kraut. Kimchi (pronounced kim'-chee) is a Korean spicy fermented side dish that has been getting a lot of press since the BBC published a report by scientists in Seoul, Korea who found that 11 of 13 chickens infected with the avian flu started to recover after they were fed an extract of kimchi.

The key ingredient is a natural organic acid called lactic acid, that's also found in sauerkraut. Although research hasn't yet shown that fermented cabbage is active against the avian flu, there is research suggesting that lactic acid in other forms activates the immune system against influenza and cold viruses. For example, a German double-blind, placebo-controlled study involving 477 people found that those who took a daily probiotic supplement had significantly less respiratory tract infections. People who caught the flu had fewer symptoms and shorter fever duration. No joke.



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