There are e-mails in circulation stating that some magazines had surprisingly predicted the epidemic of Influenza A (H1N1) years in advance. I immediately remembered an excellent book, The Coming Plague by Laurie Garrett, a journalist who won the Pulitzer Award for his work in epidemics.
In this book, besides discussing a number of very dangerous epidemics, [...]
If you think that all problems are solved after you have read all about the long vaccine production, you’re wrong. There is still the issue of distribution:
As the vaccine manufacturing process is slow and continuous, it is not possible to produce enough doses for everyone. Nowadays, our yearly vaccine production is of 700 to 900 [...]
Vincent Racaniello is a professor at the Microbiology department in Columbia University. He is extremely engaged with scientific disclosure on virology. Racaniello is also one of the authors of the book “Principles of Virology” and he could not continue transmitting such content only in books.
His blog, Virology, contains regular texts [...]
In the next text we shall see how Influenza can be transmitted by air. Now we shall see the role of contact in its transmission.
Transmission of Influenza by contact can be direct or indirect. Direct contact occurs when we come in contact with the secretions of a sick person and we place our hands on [...]
Where do the name H1N1 and all the other names come from? What determines the number of H and N?
Established by WHO in1980 , the nomenclature of Influenza A consists of: type of host, in case the virus has not been isolated from humans; geographical region of origin; number of lineage; year of isolation and; [...]
In another comment to bring about important discussions on the flu Leonardo asked the following:
I was taking a look at the dates of pandemics: don’t you think these re-arrangements are a little bit connected to agriculture industrialization? Mainly to pigs and poultry farming? Packs full of antibiotics and vaccines? Isn’t it a favorable condition for [...]
I received a comment from Paulo Amaral with amazing questions, leading me to advance this post. As follows, you can find the questions and the answer explaining what is relevant:
Would the annual vaccination against flu be liable for the low number of reports in elders?
What is the efficacy of the vaccine produced by mettles of [...]
In the previous text, I addressed why it is difficult to develop antivirals, here we will understand the characteristics of the influenza virus that worries us.
Where do viruses come from and what makes them more or less dangerous?
The virus that infects us may already be with us during our evolutive history, [...]