Tuesday, May 20, 2008

May 19 Flu Update

More on drug resistance in the flu. Excellent story, and really kind of chilling. This virus is very agile.

Birds in Siberia have bird flu antibodies.

State officials in Colorado are making plans for business continuity in a pandemic.

Experts welcome Indonesia's latest pledge to share data--CIDRAP reports.

CIDRAP also has the news of the prepandemic vaccine in Europe.

Expert says natural viruses like flu are more dangerous than bioterror.

More on business impact of agri-disease in South Korea.


At 7:16 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


You posted some extremely interesting and though provoking articles. You Reuters article about the H1N1 and H3N2 seasonal flu viruses rapidly developing global resistance to antivirals, is indeed creepy and foreboding. Suffice it to say, if future evidence show increasing H5N1 resistance, then reformulation of national bird flu pandemic strategies will be necessary. What is also very concerning are the local reports coming out of Indonesia that their Chinese poultry vaccines now appear to be rapidly losing their effectiveness. (sometimes, local media reports and comments reveal more details about real situations than MSM reports that are sanitized and summarized- just my opinion)

I see that Russian agricultural experts have discovered bird flu antibodies in migratory birds. No big surprise there, however, I will make a prediction that everyone WILL be surprised once the NIH finishes with their seroprevalence study of humans and animals in Vietnam. (that’s if they ever publish the research results publicly down the road). Based on the Vietnam results, I suspect if they ever move into India or Indonesia with these studies, they’ll hit the grand “mother lode”. Speaking of Indonesia, I see they still are refusing to provide actual H5N1 virus isolates, and only providing electronic sequencing data – figures – you can’t do much with just the sequences alone. The result of what they are doing in my view is very similar to forcing someone to study astronomy without a telescope.

I would like to point out that I believe UCLA Professor William R. Clark really missed a very important point in his interview about spending $ 50 billion preparing for potential “bioterrorism attacks”, when we should be channeling out expenditures toward the larger threat – an influenza pandemic. No argument there, however, the biggest bioterror threat is against our agricultural food and water supplies in my opinion. Most bioterror events are extremely localized event’s, or regional at most. However, if a deadly pathogen, say like hoof and mouth, anthrax, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease) were to be introduced in our food supply, we would all be defecating square bricks. That is where every country in the world is vulnerable – the food and water supply.

Finally, your very best article is the one (The Mountain Mail) which describes Colorado’s pandemic planning efforts to maintain their local economy, health system, trade and business, in the event their governor or the President, declares a pandemic emergency situation. I found the numerous potential problems they have identified, to be very realistic and in-line with federal emergency plans that numerous agencies have developed. Note: quick and decision local action will be required if a deadly pandemic ever happens, so we all don’t end up looking like a bunch of New Orleans, FEMA and Louisiana Katrina nincompoops (the natural disaster version of the Three Stooges, or vice versa).



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