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bird flu virus

About microscopic forms of life, including Bacteria, Archea, protozoans, algae and fungi. Topics relating to viruses, viroids and prions also belong here.

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bird flu virus

Postby angel » Wed Apr 19, 2006 6:16 am

Well, I had a querry in my mind about the dreaded bird flu virus. Last yaer when the epidemic broke out, it was a panic all over , but in INDIA, it was declared that the Indian subcontinent conditions are not suitable for the virus to survive or propogate. But, this time, the flu was first reported in India and had very much potential of spreading.
My querry is, is this the same HV 9 virus that was last reported. If yes then how come it has adapted to diverse conditions. And if it has adapted, then it must be a different strain.
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Postby swatkat » Wed Apr 19, 2006 1:50 pm

yeah u r right
i live in india
and a lot of eggs have been destroyed and chicken consumption has gone down
i know this has nothing to do with ur question but i just wanted to share
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Postby i_r_e_d » Sat Apr 22, 2006 8:01 pm

The cold virus has adapted so many times. That's why anyone can still catch it no matter what. When it reenters your body, the body doesn't recognize it and you get sick... You already have the antivirus in you but your body doesnt figure out to use it until later. Not all viruses do it though... Aids and small pox and chicken pox and things like that don't adapt or change... I hope this helps..
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Re: bird flu virus

Postby pdavis68 » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:05 pm

angel wrote:And if it has adapted, then it must be a different strain.


The current avian flu is the H5N1. And the one in India is the more or less the same one. It has already mutated several times and will likely continue to mutate. That is actually the concern. Right now, the H5N1 isn't very contagious. You get it by coming into direct contact with infected birds, eggs, or people, but it's not airborne. There needs to be a mucosal contact, as far I know (for example, touching an infected bird and then touching your eyes, mouth, or nose. But it's not very contagious. It really requires close contact.

The concern is it'll mutate into a much more contagious variety which will then cause a pandemic (unless it's contained within 30 days which is very, very unlikely).

While it's not as contagious, yet, it is far more deadly than the Spanish flu which caused a pandemic in 1918. The Spanish flu had a mortality rate of 2.5-5% (and killed 20-40 million people) whereas this flu currently has a mortality of about 50%. Even if mutations making it contagious make it less deadly, it is still likely to be far more deadly than the Spanish flu and will probably kill on the order of hundreds of millions, if not, over a billion people. It will likely be absolutely devastating and I doubt there's a country in the world that won't get hit by it.

Not to be the voice of doom or anything. This strain may not become very contagious.

That said, a flu pandemic WILL happen at some point. They're not terribly uncommon. If it's not this avian flu, it may be the next one. There were 3 flu pandemics in the 20th century. The Spanish flu in 1918 (the worst), the Asian flu in 1957, and the Hong Kong flu of 1968. So it's not really a matter of will there be a flu pandemic. The question is, when will the next flu pandemic come.

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Postby pdavis68 » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:09 pm

i_r_e_d wrote:The cold virus has adapted so many times.<snip>


There isn't a cold virus. There are hundreds of "cold" viruses in at least 5 virus families. There are also many bacteria that cause cold-like symptoms. But you are correct, cold viruses mutate as well. But that's not the only reason that they're hard to find a cure for. The sheer volume of viruses is a huge impediment.
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Postby angel » Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:51 pm

Thanks for the information Pete. Sorry for wrongly addressing the virus. But its really dreadful to know about these biological disasters that claim so many lives and still we are not well prepared for them.
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Postby pdavis68 » Thu Apr 27, 2006 1:26 pm

There was a report released in the past few days that basically slams the U.S. preparedness for a flu pandemic. We don't have nearly enough flu medication (Tamiflu and drugs of that nature) to handle a serious outbreak.

The optimal level is considered to be enough to treat at least 25% of the population. With this amount, when someone gets sick, you can treat their family members as soon as the first person becomes symptomatic and by doing so, you can make a big dent in the spread, greatly reducing the overall impact.

France is currently one of the few countries that has this level of medication. The U.S. is looking at enough for less than 2% of the population. I mean, that's simply pathetic. That won't even make a dent in the spread.

What's really disappointing is, it's not like this is some nebulous, "it may come some day" kind of thing. This is something that anyone in medicine will tell you, is GOING to happen. When exactly? No one knows, but seeing as there's an average of about 30 years between pandemics and it's been almost 40 since the last, I'd say we're pretty ripe for one.

This is something the government (and not just the U.S. government, but all governments) should have been preparing for for the past 20 years, not the past 2 years.

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Postby rg » Fri May 05, 2006 11:23 am

bird flu virus like H5N1 cant survive in hot conditions .....india ideally hot weather ....so virus cant survive.....even if one cooks chicken beyond 70 degree the virus dies and cant infect....moreover not a single case of viral infection has been reported in india...
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Postby Inuyasha » Tue May 16, 2006 7:17 pm

the bird flu has actually jumped the species barrier recently.
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