Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Bird flu: call for antiviral drugs to be shared

23.01.2007
New predictions about bird flu, involving the use of a mathematical model, suggest that international cooperation to share antiviral drugs might be the best way to deal with an emerging pandemic.

‘Bird flu’(avian H5N1 influenza) has not triggered a worldwide human epidemic yet because it rarely passes between people. If it does acquire this ability, it would take 6-8 months to develop a vaccine effective against the new virus.

Public health officials therefore need to consider how they would protect people during the first few months of a pandemic. Measures might include the use of antiviral drugs and international travel restrictions. In a new study published in PLoS Medicine, researchers use detailed information on air travel to model the global spread of an emerging influenza pandemic and its containment.

They conclude that much will depend on the ‘reproductive number’ (a measure of how many people an infectious individual infects on average) of the new virus that emerges. If this number is low, it will take many months before the virus spreads w orldwide and there will be plenty of time to bring an effective vaccine into use. But if the number is high then it could be difficult or impossible to contain the virus with vaccination.

Other measures could therefore be crucial, but it is likely that only a few countries will be able to stockpile supplies of drugs active against the virus. In these circumstances, compared with a ‘selfish strategy’ in which countries use their antiviral drugs only within their borders, limited worldwide sharing of antiviral drugs would slow down the spread of a flu virus by many months, to the benefit of both drug donors and recipients.

Citation: Colizza V, Barrat A, Barthelemy M, Valleron AJ, Vespignani A (2007) Modeling the worldwide spread of pandemic influenza: Baseline case and containment interventions. PLoS Med 4(1): e13.

Andrew Hyde | alfa
Further information:
http://www.plosmedicine.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht World first: Massive thrombosis removed during early pregnancy
20.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

nachricht Therapy of preterm birth in sight?
19.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Stanford researchers develop a new type of soft, growing robot

21.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Vortex photons from electrons in circular motion

21.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>