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When seen through the lens of technology, few resources are truly scarce; they’re mainly inaccessible. 

 

Peter Diamandis

New flu virus found in seals concerns scientists

RATE THIS! +5
Posted in Science on 5th Aug, 2012 03:04 PM by AlexMuller

The H3N8 flu has been associated with the deaths of harbour seals in New England last year.

 

Researchers say the virus may have evolved from a type that had been circulating in birds.

 

They say the discovery highlights the potential for pandemic flu to emerge from unexpected sources.

 

Researchers were puzzled by the mysterious deaths from pneumonia of 162 harbour seals around the coast of New England last year.

 

Autopsies on five of the marine mammals indicate that they died from a type of H3N8 influenza A virus that is closely related to a strain circulating in North American birds since 2002.

 

One of authors of the research paper is Prof Ian Lipkin, from Columbia University in the US. He is a celebrated virus hunter who in the past has helped identify West Nile virus and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). He told the BBC that finding this flu virus in seals was an interesting "new jump".

 

"It's something that's been circulating for a while in birds, but we've not had this sort of die off relating to this virus in the past. As we've looked at it in some detail, we've found there have been mutations in this virus which enable it to bind to both bird receptors for flu as well as mammalian receptors for flu."

 

Cause for concern
 
As well as mutating to live in both mammals and birds the scientists say this flu has evolved to make it more likely to cause severe symptoms. The virus also has the ability to target a protein found in the human respiratory tract.

 

Dr Anne Moscona of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City edited the report and says that the new virus is a worry.

 



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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2012-08-05
+0
I hope this doesnt turn into a new swine flu Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2012-08-05
+0
I dont think this will be able to move to humans Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2012-08-06
+3
The problem with flu virus is that it is very good at crossing the species boundary - hence swine flu, bird flu. I agree that seal flu isn't very likely ... but I guess that is what they said before swine wiped out millions of people Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2012-08-06
+0
If this virus is similar to one that has been researched well, it could be possible to modify existing inhibitors and make drugs relatively quickly Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2012-09-07
+0
that we simply seek the Master scptulor who created all that beauty.Is the New Age movement still hot? It seems to be much less hot since the world decided not to end on 1/1/2000, but then again I'm probably out of the loop. I just remember reading about some of the New Age meccas out in Sedona and I think that's where Maurice Strong built his gargantuan mecca to himself. Anyhoo, looking forward to your second installment!Maryanne Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-10-25
+0
e1qF0i Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic article post.Thanks Again. Great. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-01-30
+0
1rLKG3 Really informative article post.Much thanks again. Cool. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-04-19
+0
xNZw29 Looking forward to reading more. Great article post. Want more. Reply


 

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