Jump to content

Mutation starting to show up...


Recommended Posts

The most dangerous wave of the flu in 1918 was the third wave. If we had our first in April, and the second is now waning, this may be bringing in the third wave...






H1N1 mutation found in some flu fatalities


Change in virus could cause severest symptoms, Norwegian scientists said



updated 1:10 p.m. ET, Fri., Nov . 20, 2009



OSLO - Norwegian health authorities said Friday they have discovered a potentially significant mutation in the H1N1 influenza strain that could be responsible for causing the severest symptoms among those infected.


"The mutation could be affecting the virus' ability to go deeper into the respiratory system, thus causing more serious illness," the Norwegian Institute of Public Health said in a statement.


The concern over mutation of the H1N1 virus came as health officials said the H1N1 virus is moving eastwards across Europe and Asia after appearing to peak in parts of western Europe and the United States, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.


There are "early signs of a peak in disease activity in some areas of the northern hemisphere," the WHO said in a statement Friday.


At least 6,770 deaths have been recorded worldwide since the swine flu virus emerged in April, according to the latest WHO update which showed 520 known fatalities in the past week.


Authorities added they had no reason to believe the mutation had any implication for the effect of flu vaccines or antiviral drugs made by groups such as Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis or AstraZeneca.


In Norway the mutation was found in the bodies of two people killed by the virus and of one person made seriously ill.


The two people infected by the mutated virus were among the first fatalities from the H1N1 pandemic in Norway, the institute said. The WHO is investigating samples of the virus in those two people.


It was unclear whether the mutated virus was transmitted among humans, the health authorities said.


"Based on what we know so far, it doesn't seem like the mutated virus is circulating in the population, but rather that spontaneous changes have happened in the three patients," director Geir Stene Larsen at the public health institute said in the statement.


In some later fatalities linked to H1N1 that were studied, the same mutation was not found. It had found other mutations in some other cases, but the mutations found in two of the first fatalities and one seriously ill patient had been of "particular interest," it said.


Norway has seen relatively more fatalities in the flu pandemic compared to the size of the population versus other European countries, with 23 confirmed deaths and 680,000 estimated to have been infected.


Public health authorities have said this could be due to the country being hit early in the pandemic's northern hemisphere winter wave, before a mass vaccination program got underway.


"Nevertheless, it is important to study if there's still something about the Norwegian fatalities that separate us from other countries, and that make us learn something that strengthens our treatment of the seriously ill," director Bjorn-Inge Larsen at the Norwegian Directorate of Health said.



Still widespread in U.S.


H1N1 flu is still widespread across the United States although it appears to have recently peaked in most areas except the northeast. But transmission continues to intensify in Canada, with the highest number of doctor visits by children.


Spread of the flu appears to have peaked in western European countries including Belgium, Britain, Iceland and Ireland after a period of intense outbreaks, the United Nations agency said.


Norway and countries further east including Georgia, Lithuania, Moldova and Serbia are reporting sharp increases in influenza-like illness or acute respiratory infection, it said.


Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and parts of Afghanistan — particularly Kabul — are reporting higher numbers of flu cases. Israel is also reporting sharp increases.


"Essentially what is happening is that it is spreading eastwards," Anthony Mounts, medical epidemiologist on WHO's influenza team, told Reuters. "Typically seasonal influenza always starts west and moves eastwards. It seems to be following that pattern except it is coming very early this year."


Flu transmission remains active in east Asia, the WHO said. "In Japan, influenza activity remains elevated but stable nationally and may be decreasing slightly in populated urban areas," it said.


Most countries in tropical areas of central and South America continue to report declining numbers of flu cases, with the exception of Peru and Colombia, it said.






Link to comment

And then I heard someone in a high position in a news blub who says this is the slowing of the *first* wave. What's with that??




**insert head in hands shaking head smiley here**





Link to comment
What were all the experts saying about it couldn't mutate....LIES!!


:o All Type A Influenza viruses are well known for their propensity to easily mutate over time.


Viruses, Vaccines, and Evolution of Influenza


Since viruses have such high mutation and reproductive rates, they can adapt to changing environments quite well. Indeed, since the only way they can reproduce is by infecting a cell they must be able to evolve faster the their hosts cells. If not, then the host cells would adapt/evolve to where a virus would no longer be able to infect. Cells change their surface receptors so viruses cannot attach; the viruses change their surface proteins so they can attach to the changed cell surface receptors. The viruses must always stay ahead of the evolution game. They are very, very good at this.



Link to comment

As far as I can tell, the mutation in the article I posted is different from the Tamiflu-resistant strain. That one has already been well documented, and shows up in pockets here and there.


I think any feel-good "don't worry about mutations" information that came from the government agencies was directed at the vaccine-making questions. The vaccines take a while to make, so any mutations of the viruses will eventually make the vaccine useless.


If they tell the public not to worry, mutations aren't likely, or whatever, people will still accept the vaccine. If they make it and pay so much and no one takes it, then that's another problem.


I can guarantee they're frantically changing the vaccine right now to fit the mutations. But it does take time.




Link to comment

Swine flu cases fall in U.S. but may rise with holiday travel


Mutated form of the virus detected in three Norwegians


By Rob Stein

Saturday, November 21, 2009



The level of swine flu activity in the United States appears to be declining, although officials are worried about another increase of cases during the Thanksgiving holiday when many people travel and families gather.


The number of states reporting widespread activity of the H1N1 virus dropped to 43 from 46 in the past week, and activity fell in all 10 regions of the country, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


But flu cases are still rising in some states, including Maine and Hawaii, and it is too soon to know whether activity will surge again, said Anne Schuchat, director of the CDC's Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.


"Influenza is unpredictable, and it is so early in the year to have this much disease. We don't know if these declines will persist, what the slope will be, whether we'll have a long decline or it will start to go up again," she said Friday.


The news came as scientists in Norway announced that they had detected a mutated form of the swine flu virus in two patients who died of the flu and in a third who was severely ill. It is the most recent report of mutations in the virus that is being watched closely for any change that could make it more dangerous.


In a statement, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health said the mutation "could possibly make the virus more prone to infect deeper in the airways and thus cause more severe disease," such as pneumonia.


The institute said that there was no indication that the mutation would hinder the ability of the vaccine to protect people from becoming infected or impair the effectiveness of antiviral drugs in treating people who became infected.


Scientists have been analyzing the H1N1 virus from "a number of patients as part of the surveillance of the pandemic flu virus" and have detected several mutations, the statement said. While the existence of mutations is normal, and most "will probably have little or no importance . . . one mutation has caught special interest."


The two patients who had the mutation and died were the first swine flu fatalities in Norway. The third patient found to have the mutated form of the virus also became severely ill.


"Based on what we know so far, it seems that the mutated virus does not circulate in the population, but might be a result of spontaneous changes which have occurred in these three patients," the statement said.


Schuchat said the mutation is no reason for alarm.


"I don't think it has the public health implications that we would wonder about," she said, noting that some patients have gotten severely ill, including developing pneumonia, after being infected with strains of the virus without the mutation.


The World Health Organization said viruses with a similar mutation had been detected in several other countries, including Brazil, China, Japan, Mexico, Ukraine and the United States. "No links between the small number of patients infected with the mutated virus have been found and the mutation does not appear to spread," the WHO said in a statement.


"Influenza is a mutable virus, and changes are to be expected," said Arnold S. Monto of the University of Michigan in an e-mail. "This is typical early in the spread of a pandemic virus."


Scientists around the world have been tracking the virus carefully for any signs that it had mutated into a more dangerous form. While a variety of mutations have been detected, most have not appeared to have affected the virus in any significant way. There have been some mutations that make the virus more resistant to antiviral drugs, experts said. But like the mutation that may cause more severe illness, those too seem self-contained.


The CDC is investigating a cluster of four cases of patients at the Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C., who were found to be infected with H1N1 virus that was resistant to the antiviral drug Tamiflu.


William Schaffner, a medical professor at Vanderbilt University, said mutations that make episodes of swine flu more severe are most dangerous only if they are "easily transmissible."


"That would make it a more severe disease. Apparently this has that capacity. But in order for it to become really quote dangerous to the population it also has to be easily transmissible," he said. "That's a different characteristic. And apparently that does not appear to have happened to this virus. It does not seem to be spreading in the general population."


Detection of the mutation should be reassuring, Schaffner said, because it shows the intensity of the global effort to monitor the virus. "The virologists are keeping an eye on H1N1 and this is evidence of that," he said.




I read somewhere...and not sure if it is true but....they said that because it is going further down into the lungs the swabs are coming back as negative for H1N1..I'm not sure if that is true but thought I'd pass it on.



Link to comment


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.