Speakers: Peter Palese (Mount Sinai School of Medicine), Adolfo García-Sastre (Mount Sinai School of Medicine), Stephen Morse (Columbia University), Isaac Weisfuse (NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene), David Nabarro (United Nations), Menno de Jong (Oxford University Clinical Research Unit, Vietnam)Presented by the Emerging Infectious Diseases Discussion Group
Reported by Marilynn Larkin | Posted February 23, 2007
Will the avian influenza virus H5N1 cause the next human pandemic? We don't know, but we must be prepared nonetheless, stressed experts participating in a briefing on influenza preparedness sponsored by the Emerging Infectious Diseases Discussion Group and held at the New York Academy of Sciences on October 23, 2006.
The prospect of an influenza pandemic is daunting, but there is some reason for optimism. Studies of the 1918 pandemic virus suggest it is sensitive to currently available vaccines and antiviral therapy. And lessons learned from that pandemic suggest that, even in the face of vaccine and antiviral shortages, a variety of nondrug interventions, from social distancing to hand washing, can help control a pandemic and limit its spread. Moreover, if H5N1 is, indeed, the culprit, humans may have partial immunity because of prior exposure to H1N1 viruses.
These themes were echoed throughout the meeting, with each speaker providing data and insights from different perspectives.Log in or Join Now to continue