Tuesday, August 09, 2005

A Vaccine Against All Flus

BBC News reports on a UK company that's developing a one-time vaccine against all flu strains:
Current flu vaccines work by giving immunity to two proteins called haemagglutinin and neuraminidase, which are found on the surface of flu viruses.
However, these proteins keep mutating which means doctors have to keep making new vaccines to keep up.
Scientists at Acambis' laboratory in the US, together with Belgian researchers at Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology, are focusing their efforts on a different protein, called M2, which does not mutate, as well as other technology that they cannot disclose yet for commercial reasons.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Pig Strep

CNN reports on the mysterious outbreak of Streptococcus suis among humans in China:

While not uncommon in pigs, streptococcus suis is seldom seen in people and never dozens of cases all at once -- raising bigger questions about whether the germ has mixed with some other bacteria or virus.

Thanks to JAD for the tip.