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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

H7N9 prompts fresh look at H7 pandemic potential

From Lisa Schnirring at CIDRAP

" Some of the US government's top influenza experts today weighed in on the threat from the new H7N9 virus, airing some unusual properties of H7 viruses that challenge the notion that they aren't likely to adapt to humans or cause pandemics.

The same experts addressed the H7N9 virus linked to China's recent outbreak more specifically in the Jun 20 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), but their report today looks at the pandemic potential through the lens of what's known about other H7 viruses.

The group's review appears in the latest issue of mBio, the online journal of the American Society for Microbiology. The experts are all from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). They are NIAID Director Anthony Fauci, MD, Dave Morens, MD, senior advisor to Fauci, and Jeffery Taubenberger, MD, PhD, section chief of NIAID's Laboratory of Infectious Diseases."

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