Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Potential risks associated with widespread use of pandemic influenza drug

19.10.2006
Tamiflu, an antiviral flu drug, is recommended worldwide for the prevention and treatment of pandemic influenza infection, but extensive use by the human population could cause a serious environmental challenge as well as encouraging a new strain of avian flu to develop.

Reporting in the current issue of Environmental Health Perspectives, researchers at the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH) describe the likely effects of widespread antiviral treatment for a flu pandemic, on wildlife and the natural environment.

Lead researcher Dr Andrew Singer, said “An antiviral drug has never been widely used before, so we need to determine what might happen. During a flu pandemic, millions of people will all take Tamiflu at the same time. Over just 8 or 9 weeks, massive amounts of the drug will be expelled in sewage and find its way into the rivers. It could have huge effects on the fish and other wildlife.”

The build up of Tamiflu in rivers is likely to cause the avian influenza virus in ducks to become resistant to it, eventually resulting in a new wave of flu that is unaffected by the Tamiflu drug. People in south-east Asia, for example, could be more at risk from contracting the new strain of influenza because they have close and frequent contact with wildfowl.

Dr Singer said, “We hope that, in the short term, Tamiflu will slow the spread of the virus so that an effective vaccine can be produced. But we recommend that more research is done to identify the regions and people most at risk, to study how Tamiflu behaves in water, and to determine cheap and easy ways to break it down before it reaches the river.”

The CEH research has focussed on determining the effects of Tamiflu in rivers in the UK and the USA.

Marion O'Sullivan | alfa
Further information:
http://www.nerc.ac.uk
http://www.ehponline.org

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht A new indicator for marine ecosystem changes: the diatom/dinoflagellate index
21.08.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung Warnemünde

nachricht Value from wastewater
16.08.2017 | Hochschule Landshut

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

ShAPEing the future of magnesium car parts

23.08.2017 | Automotive Engineering

New insights into the world of trypanosomes

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

New Test for Rare Immunodeficiency

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>