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January 10, 2006

Is H5N1 far more common than we thought?

Via the Washington Times: Study questions bird-flu paranoia.

Dr. Anna Thorson of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, who led the study, said that although survey subjects were not tested for the H5N1 avian-flu virus, researchers think the participants had it. Researchers also said concern about a pandemic has been fueled by the fact that only the worst human cases have been reported to health officials since the 2003 outbreak in Asia.

"The verified human cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza in Vietnam may represent only a selection of the most severely ill patients," the study says.

But Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said yesterday that he has reservations about the study. He said that without blood tests it is impossible to know whether the people had influenza, much less avian influenza.

conclusion would seem to be a major survey in known H5N1 hot zones, to see if the general population has H5N1 antibodies.

Posted by dymaxion at January 10, 2006 07:23 PM

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