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Welcome to the conversation Forum of Flu Wiki

This is an international website intended to remain accessible to as many people as possible. The opinions expressed here are those of the individual posters who remain solely responsible for the content of their messages.
The use of good judgement during the discussion of controversial issues would be greatly appreciated.

Illness as vaccination and questions about re-infection

by: magdelaine

Fri Aug 28, 2009 at 18:41:36 PM EDT

I've got a question that has been percolating for the last week or so. In my town, the swine flu is going around. Just about all of my friends have had a "flu" this summer. I have had it myself. Most of the cases have been very mild, although some of them have been more like seasonal flu. Often in one family one person will have diarrhea, a fever, and runny nose, another will have no fever, a deep cough, and crushing tiredness, so it sure seems to be different in various individuals.

I'm wondering, does having the illness grant the same kind of immunity as vaccination? How often can you get this or any flu if the flu virus remains stable? Once a month? Once a wave?

FWIW, not one of my friends is going to get the H1N1 vaccine; they don't trust it.

Discuss :: (8 Comments)

Is Flu influenced by both historical and current living conditions?


Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 14:06:01 PM EDT

I had a long talk with my mother last night.  She lived through the 1918 Flu pandemic, WW-1, Great depression, WW-11, among other events.

She stated that what scared her and all others who lived in 1918 is flu, not war, or economic conditions; it is flu.  

There's More... :: (5 Comments, 245 words in story)

Science from BirdFlu2008 Oxford UK conference

by: UK - Bird

Mon Sep 15, 2008 at 03:56:16 AM EDT

This diary is for the science discussed at the BirdFlu2008 Conference held in Oxford between the 10th and 11th of September 2008.

I went to the conference and exhibition in Oxford with SusanC. She will have more coherent opinions of the conference than mine, but here's my beginners eye view. The notes I will relate are not a complete picture of the conference for three reasons 1) Some of it we already know well and/or have discussed it before or 2) Some of it was too far beyond my understanding to offer any sensible comment. 3) I can't guarantee that my grasp of what was reported is accurate for which I apologise to the fine scientists at the conference.

The conference was small (about 130) but attended by many of the stars of the flu world. It was a wonderful if challenging opportunity to be there. My thanks to Susan for giving me the opportunity :-)

There's More... :: (146 Comments, 75 words in story)

How might the recent 1918 findings effect today's H5N1 situation?

by: ssal

Tue Aug 19, 2008 at 19:36:31 PM EDT

This question is directed primarily, but not necessarily exclusively, to each of the Wiki's M.D.'s.  What are your overall thoughts about how today's approach to the H5N1 threat could (should?) be affected by the recent findings about bacterial pneumonia infections in the 1918 pandemic deaths?  
I'm guessing you're going to get more than a few specific questions from everyone else, but I'll go ahead and start with these:  
My understanding is that so far, autopsies on human H5N1 deaths have been sparse. I also understand that the average time between onset of symptoms and the human H5N1 deaths that have occurred so far has been on the order of 8 to 10 days, with a lot of variance. How compatible is this with deaths being caused by secondary bacterial infections?
Have many of the human H5N1 cases so far been treated (aggressively or otherwise) with antibiotics? The results?
What changes, if any, do you think you might make in your own preps?  
Discuss :: (57 Comments)

Influence and influenza

by: Poppy

Sat Apr 26, 2008 at 12:01:43 PM EDT

Tracy Press Publisher emeritus Sam Matthews remembers Dr. Allan Powers of Dr. Powers Park fame, the physician who guided Tracy California through the lethal 1918 flu epidemic.

Some interesting bits in this brief newspaper story of a small town doctor and the trials he faced in protecting the public health in 1918.
The city later named a park after his doctor which has since been swallowed up by the local hospital expansion. Being from Tracy, I played in that park as a child.

Discuss :: (5 Comments)

This year's flu is circulating, folks. I have it.

by: Sick_Of_It

Sat Oct 20, 2007 at 22:08:49 PM EDT

I'm surprised that it's going around this early in the season.  But after discovering I have it, I checked current stats, and lo and behold, it's circulating.


It's interesting that the highest death rates from the 1918 pandemic were in October/November.


I would imagine that when a pandemic hits, it will hit hard and heavy early in the season.

I currently see a bout with the flu as an opportunity to trial my anti-viral concoctions against a live virus.  We'll see how that goes this year.

Have any of the rest of you encountered this year's flu yet?  If so, what's the best treatment you've found to knock it down?

Discuss :: (18 Comments)

Could an alien infection cause an epidemic on earth?

by: Bronco Bill

Fri Oct 12, 2007 at 23:50:29 PM EDT

History Channel, October 16, 9pm Eastern time

Mega Disasters: Alien Infection
Could an alien infection cause an epidemic on earth? Some experts believe that spacecraft returning from Mars could bring back a harmful sample or comet dust falling into our atmosphere could cause pandemics. One astronomer believes that the Influenza of 1918, which killed between 50-100 million people, was one such outbreak and that another "infection" could decimate the world's population. Astrobiologists are now poised to bring Mars samples back to earth to examine them in a Bio 4 level safety lab. In a hypothetical future disaster scenario, track how comet dust would seed the earth with a virulent virus. Quarantine measures don't work and panic ensues. 

There's More... :: (24 Comments, 26 words in story)

1918 first-wave virus

by: gs

Fri Aug 24, 2007 at 23:04:59 PM EDT

this was reported here last last year by SusanC,
that a group around Taubenberger had a sample
with the 1918 first wave virus and that they
were examining it.
Now, I haven't heard anything about this in the media.
Is it true ? What has happened in the meantime ?
Do they have fragments of the virus ?
Will it be published ?

Does someone remember the information policy
of the Taubenberger-group wrt. the Brevig
sequences ? Was it announced that they were working on it, did they publish fragments,
how long did it take until they published
the sequences ?

Can we assume that the US-government already knows something about the sequences and maybe
included it in their decision to delay the current
panflu-budget ?

Discuss :: (65 Comments)

cost of sequencing(2)

by: gs

Sun Aug 05, 2007 at 02:35:21 AM EDT

why do we often only get partial sequences or only one segment ,
is it too difficult and expensive or is it secrecy ?

Is the sequencing of old conserved viruses more difficult ?
What does it cost, any estimates ?

I get these from before 1918, only small fragments,
exept for the 1902 chicken with about 9000 nucleotides
out of about 13500.
(the 1909,1911 sequences, are they date-errors ?)

But viruses before 1918 should be particularly interesting,
so why can't we get them ? What would it cost ?


  AF497556 978 Avian 4 (HA) H7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/440b/1902(H7)) 
  U20471 66 Avian 4 (HA) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  L37795 1027 Avian 7 (MP) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  L37798 890 Avian 8 (NS) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  CY015058 2341 Avian 1 (PB2) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  CY015057 2233 Avian 3 (PA) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  CY015055 1565 Avian 5 (NP) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  CY015054 1027 Avian 7 (MP) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  CY015056 890 Avian 8 (NS) H7N7 Italy 1902 Influenza A virus (A/chicken/Brescia/1902(H7N7)) 
  EF473519 1091 Human 4 (HA) H3 USA 1909/12/07 Influenza A virus (A/Connecticut/3/2003(H3)) 
  EF473606 1806 Human 4 (HA)  China 1909/12/07 Influenza B virus (B/Jiangsu/10/2003) 
  EF473522 1068 Human 4 (HA) H3 USA 1911/12/07 Influenza A virus (A/District of Columbia/4/2003(H3)) 
  EF473546 1103 Human 4 (HA) H3 USA 1911/12/07 Influenza A virus (A/Missouri/12/2003(H3)) 
  AY220475 151 Avian 5 (NP)  USA 1916 Influenza A virus (A/cinnamon teal/Utah/1/1916) 
  AY095226 166 Avian 4 (HA) H1 USA 1917 Influenza A virus (A/Brant Goose/1/1917(H1N?)) 
  AY095227 288 Avian 4 (HA) H1 USA 1917 Influenza A virus (A/Brant Goose/1/1917(H1N?)) 
  AY095228 151 Avian 5 (NP) H1 USA 1917 Influenza A virus (A/Brant Goose/1/1917(H1N?))

Discuss :: (15 Comments)

1918's 2nd wave virus survived ?

by: gs

Wed Jul 25, 2007 at 12:39:31 PM EDT

I'm wondering whether the virulent virus
from the 2nd wave died and was replaced by the one from the 3rd wave,
and whether we do have any descendants of 1918
2nd wave HA today ?
The 3rd wave could have been quite a different virus, reassorted or recombined.
Indeed, the next available viruses from
the 30s seem too far away from 1918 2nd wave
in HA (not in the other genes).
There's More... :: (4 Comments, 125 words in story)

Presentations Resource List

by: Bronco Bill

Thu Jun 21, 2007 at 15:42:57 PM EDT

( - promoted by Bronco Bill)

What I'd like to do here is compile an ongoing list of web resources for those who are putting presentations together, whether they be printed or oral or digital. The majority of these sites are not blogs or wikis, but static content that has been posted by states, news feeds, government archives, etc. I'm not trying to point anyone away from FluWiki, but instead making people aware of other resource sites (many of which may have already been posted here or on the old forum).

Listed below are some of the websites I've found using nothing more than Google and various search words and phrases. Most of the searches include "Spanish Flu, and many of the pages have links to other resources.

Please feel free to add to this list...

There's More... :: (12 Comments, 43 words in story)

failure to infect "volunteers" in 1918

by: gs

Wed Jun 20, 2007 at 12:26:24 PM EDT

(replaced with a better readable similar text,
20.June 2007,21:25 MESZ)

Modes of Transmission
While it is presumed now, just as it was before the pandemic, that the causative agent of influenza is transmitted from person to person, either directly or indirectly, by moist secretions or fresh discharges from the mouth and nose no proof of this has been forthcoming. It
may be assumed that the disease is highly communicable and that it spreads both by direct and indirect contact of healthy persons with patients. It may be that the virus is carried by healthy persons, but this can neither be proved nor disproved at the present time. Many of the cases of influenza are so mild that the infected individual is able to go about his business and is thus capable of spreading the disease.
Just after the crests of the earlier epidemics were reached two series of experiments were authorized by the Navy Department under arrangements made by the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery in cooperation with the United States Public Health Service for the purpose of determining, if possible, the mode of transmission of influenza as well as the causative agent.

There's More... :: (12 Comments, 1662 words in story)

good webpage about 1918

by: gs

Fri Jun 15, 2007 at 07:49:33 AM EDT

Discuss :: (8 Comments)

Philly, St. Louis, & the 1918 Flu

by: jsanderson

Thu Apr 26, 2007 at 21:02:38 PM EDT

Thanks to all of you who responded to my initial query. 
There's More... :: (0 Comments, 70 words in story)

St. Louis vs. Philly (are we missing something?)

by: jsanderson

Wed Apr 25, 2007 at 16:30:31 PM EDT

Regarding the two independent studies funded by the National Institutes of Health comparing public-health responses to the 1918 epidemic: 

"If St. Louis had waited another week or two, they might have fared the same as Philadelphia," says the lead author of one of the studies, Richard Hatchett, M.D., an associate director for emergency preparedness at NIAID.  But did these two studies miss something when they sought to shed light on this deadly epidemic?  I'm gonna throw this out there: are there some yet to be analyzed factors that made St. Louis less prone to the spread of influenza than other major US cities? 

Discuss :: (5 Comments)

Non-pharmaceutical Interventions - Lessons from 1918

by: SusanC

Wed Apr 18, 2007 at 21:21:12 PM EDT

( - promoted by Bronco Bill)

What do we have today that we didn't have in 1918?  Hindsight!

Exploring 2 studies on efficacy of NPI in 1918
There's More... :: (41 Comments, 1703 words in story)

Exhumation of UK diplomat

by: The Pilot

Wed Apr 11, 2007 at 12:16:05 PM EDT

Has anyone got any recent news on the plans by Prof John Oxford of London to exhume a 1918 flu victim Sir Mark Sykes to carry out tests?
Discuss :: (7 Comments)

High Impact - High Probability - Why the Risk communicators are wrong

by: pablo escobar

Tue Feb 13, 2007 at 12:18:44 PM EST

An H5N1 pandemic outbreak has been described as a High Impact - Low Probability event.  I would argue that in fact, Pandemics are High Impact - Medium Probability events, and current developments imply that it may now be a High Impact - High Probability event worthy of immediate change in policies, spending, and communications.
There's More... :: (175 Comments, 465 words in story)

CDC release: Small Changes in 1918 Pandemic Virus Knocks Out Transmission

by: big critter

Wed Jan 31, 2007 at 14:14:01 PM EST

Press Release

Embargoed Until 2 p.m. ET:
Contact:  CDC Media Relations
Feb. 1, 2007

Small Changes in 1918 Pandemic Virus Knocks Out Transmission
Research Provides Clues for Assessing Pandemic Potential of New Influenza Viruses

There's More... :: (2 Comments, 541 words in story)

1918 Way Back Machine

by: Blue Coyote

Sun Jan 21, 2007 at 14:37:21 PM EST

NY Times, 1918 edition: Dr. Copeland Controverts the Theory that Dress Is Responsible for Ill-Health. Does Balk at Hair Dyes.
There's More... :: (0 Comments, 446 words in story)
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