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Thread: Bird, Seasonal & Swine Flu

  1. #1
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    Red face Bird, Seasonal & Swine Flu

    Brits don't believe Tamiflu works...

    British medical journal slams Roche on Tamiflu
    12 Nov.`12 — A leading British medical journal is asking the drug maker Roche to release all its data on Tamiflu, claiming there is no evidence the drug can actually stop the flu.
    The drug has been stockpiled by dozens of governments worldwide in case of a global flu outbreak and was widely used during the 2009 swine flu pandemic. On Monday, one of the researchers linked to the BMJ journal called for European governments to sue Roche. "I suggest we boycott Roche's products until they publish missing Tamiflu data," wrote Peter Gotzsche, leader of the Nordic Cochrane Centre in Copenhagen. He said governments should take legal action against Roche to get the money back that was "needlessly" spent on stockpiling Tamiflu.

    Last year, Tamiflu was included in a list of "essential medicines" by the World Health Organization, a list that often prompts governments or donor agencies to buy the drug. Tamiflu is used to treat both seasonal flu and new flu viruses like bird flu or swine flu. WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl said the agency had enough proof to warrant its use for unusual influenza viruses, like bird flu. "We do have substantive evidence it can stop or hinder progression to severe disease like pneumonia," he said.

    In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends Tamiflu as one of two medications for treating regular flu. The other is GlaxoSmithKline's Relenza. The CDC says such antivirals can shorten the duration of symptoms and reduce the risk of complications and hospitalization. In 2009, the BMJ and researchers at the Nordic Cochrane Centre asked Roche to make all its Tamiflu data available. At the time, Cochrane Centre scientists were commissioned by Britain to evaluate flu drugs. They found no proof that Tamiflu reduced the number of complications in people with influenza. "Despite a public promise to release (internal company reports) for each (Tamiflu) trial...Roche has stonewalled," BMJ editor Fiona Godlee wrote in an editorial last month.

    In a statement, Roche said it had complied with all legal requirements on publishing data and provided Gotzsche and his colleagues with 3,200 pages of information to answer their questions. "Roche has made full clinical study data ... available to national health authorities according to their various requirements, so they can conduct their own analyses," the company said. Roche says it doesn't usually release patient-level data available due to legal or confidentiality constraints. It said it did not provide the requested data to the scientists because they refused to sign a confidentiality agreement. Roche is also being investigated by the European Medicines Agency for not properly reporting side effects, including possible deaths, for 19 drugs including Tamiflu that were used in about 80,000 patients in the U.S.

    http://news.yahoo.com/british-medica...--finance.html

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    Georgia Bulldogs come up with vaccine for multi-strain swine flu...

    Early success in vaccine against multiple strains of influenza
    Wednesday 30th March, 2016 - Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of Sanofi, in collaboration with University of Georgia has developed a vaccine that protects against multiple strains of both seasonal and pandemic H1N1 influenza in mouse models.
    The study, ‘Design and Characterization of a COBRA HA vaccine for H1N1 influenza viruses’, to be presented Wednesday at the World Vaccine Congress US 2016 in Washington, D.C., raises potential for a flu vaccine that covers more than a few strains at a time, and is not affected by the careful guesswork currently used to determine the strains each year's vaccine contains. "One of the problems with current influenza vaccines is that we have to make predictions about which virus strains will be most prevalent every year and build our vaccines around those predictions," said Ted Ross, director of UGA's Center for Vaccines and Immunology and Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar in Infectious Diseases in the College of Veterinary Medicine. "What we have developed is a vaccine that protects against multiple different strains of H1N1 virus at once, so we might be able to one day replace the current standard of care with this more broadly cross-protective vaccine."

    The H1N1 influenza virus caused a worldwide pandemic in 2009. When it was first detected, it was called swine flu because the virus was similar to those found in pigs, but the virus now circulates as a seasonal form of influenza. The study, published in the Journal of Virology, states that the vaccine has been developed using a technique called Computationally Optimized Broadly Reactive Antigen, or COBRA, UGA researchers Donald Carter, Christopher Darby and Bradford Lefoley, along with Ross, created nine prototype synthetic compound vaccines constructed using genetic sequences from multiple influenza virus strains.


    The COBRA vaccines were designed to recognize H1N1 viruses isolated within the last 100 years, but many of the experimental vaccines produced immunity against influenza strains not included in the design. This means that scientists may be able to produce a vaccine that not only protects against recognized seasonal and pandemic influenza strains, but also strains that have yet to be discovered.

    While the newly developed vaccine has only been tested with mice, success in the lab has raised expectation of a universal vaccine being developed at some point in the future. "We still have some work to do before we get a truly universal flu vaccine," said Ross. "But the COBRA vaccine we've developed for H1N1 virus subtypes is a major step in the right direction." The scientists said the strategy for designing and using the vaccines could provide a model for designing much more broad, potentially multi-year protection for people.

    Additionally, the scientists emphasized the need to identify strains posing the greatest threat as the process of stopping, tweaking and restarting production of the vaccine slows down its production. With a broadly-applicable vaccine, it could be produced continuously and more cheaply, while protecting more people from infection. "What we have developed is a vaccine that protects against multiple different strains of H1N1 virus at once, so we might be able to one day replace the current standard of care with this more broadly cross-protective vaccine," said Ross in a statement.

    http://www.bignewsnetwork.com/news/2...s-of-influenza
    Last edited by waltky; 03-30-2016 at 04:48 PM.

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    The flu shot is useless.
    Alea iacta est

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    Cool

    Granny says, "Dat's right ladies - get yer flu shot an' protect yer baby...

    Study: Flu Shot While Pregnant Protects the Baby
    May 03, 2016 - Getting a flu shot while pregnant appears to “significantly” reduce the risk of the baby getting influenza in its first six months, according to a new study.
    Writing in the journal Pediatrics, researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine found babies, whose mothers were vaccinated while pregnant, had a 70 percent reduction in laboratory-confirmed flu cases and an 80 percent reduction in flu-related hospitalizations. The study's lead author, Pediatrician Julie H. Shakib said, "Babies cannot be immunized during their first six months, so they must rely on others for protection from the flu during that time. When pregnant women get the flu vaccine there are clear benefits for their infants."


    Getting a flu shot while pregnant protects the baby, too.

    Researchers say their findings are important because “pregnant women and young infants are among those at highest risk for dying from flu.” The researchers came to their conclusions based on data from more than 245,000 health records of pregnant women and more than 249,000 infant records covering flu seasons from December of 2005 to March 2014. The data also showed that from among the 658 babies who got the flu, 97 percent came from mothers who had not been vaccinated during pregnancy. Of those babies 151 were sick enough to require hospitalization, and 148 of those babies were born to women who had not been vaccinated.

    To make sure the results were “not related to change” the researchers also examined cases of another sickness, respiratory syncytial virus, which often occurs in colder weather. They found that flu vaccinations had no effect on the number of babies getting sick with RSV. The researchers said only about 50 percent of pregnant women reported getting flu shots last flu season and that these findings reveal more expecting mothers should get vaccinated. "We just really hope more pregnant women get the vaccine," Shakib said. "That's the take-home message of the study."

    http://www.voanews.com/content/mht-a...y/3313837.html

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    Sure give your baby a does of mercury.
    Alea iacta est

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    Granny says get yer flu vaccination ladies, so's ya'll have happy, healthy babies...

    Study: Pregnant Women Pass On Flu-fighting Antibodies to Newborns
    July 12, 2016 | WASHINGTON — Your muscles ache. Your nose is stuffed up. You don’t want to get out of bed. You can’t get warm. You have the flu.
    Expect to be out of commission for a couple of days if you get hit with this nasty virus. Most of us can get a vaccine to lower our chances of infection, but there is one population too young to get this protective shield - newborn babies. For the first six months of their lives, babies born during flu season are at high risk of contracting the disease. Flu shots are always recommended, but doctors say they're even more important for anyone who will be in close proximity to a newborn.


    Flu vaccinations for pregnant women protect their newborns, as well

    Doctors also recommend pregnant women get vaccinated to protect themselves. Pregnancy is already tough but having the flu on top of it can have serious effects, and even lead to hospitalization. Now, research shows that the benefits of flu vaccines not only protect mom, but are transferred to her baby through the placenta and protect it from flu during the vulnerable first two months of life outside the womb.

    Passing on protection

    Marta Nunes, a research scientist at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, focuses primarily on protecting newborns from vaccine-preventable diseases. Since the flu vaccine is not recommended for babies younger than six months, she is very interested in ways to protect them until they can receive a vaccine. “Vaccinating pregnant women is a strategy that we wanted to study, if it could work to protect these babies during the early period,” Nunes explained to VOA.


    Babies of vaccinated moms are highly protected from contracting the flu during the first two months of life

    In her study, published in JAMA Pediatrics, she looked at the number of antibodies present in women who received a flu vaccine and those who received a placebo. After their babies were born, Nunes followed them for six months, comparing the number of antibodies in the mothers to those in their infants. She found that babies born to vaccinated moms were “highly protected” during the first two months, a much higher level than she had seen in a previous study.

    Vaccination recommendations

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    Lightbulb

    Good reason for diabetics to get flu shot...

    Flu vaccine may help keep diabetics out of the hospital
    July 25, 2016 - People with diabetes who get the flu vaccine may be less likely to wind up hospitalized for cardiovascular or respiratory problems, a recent study suggests.
    “The potential impact of influenza vaccine to reduce serious illness and death highlight the importance to renew efforts to ensure that people with diabetes receive the flu vaccine every year,” said lead study author Dr. Eszter Vamos, a public health researcher at Imperial College London. Vamos and colleagues examined seven years of data on almost 125,000 people in England with type 2 diabetes, which is associated with aging and obesity and accounts for most cases of the disease. Vaccination was associated with a 30 percent lower hospital admission rates for stroke, 22 percent lower rates for heart failure, and 15 percent lower rates for pneumonia or influenza, researchers report in CMAJ.

    “Research shows that in addition to severe chest infections, flu may also lead to heart attacks and strokes,” Vamos said. “Most severe influenza complications occur in the elderly and people who suffer from long-term conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and asthma,” she added by email. To understand how flu vaccines may influence the odds of hospitalization and death for diabetics, researchers examined data on patients’ age, weight, smoking status and gender and looked at whether patients had a diagnosis or prescription for conditions for a variety of other medical conditions.

    They looked at records both during the flu season and during summer months when influenza cases were less common. Patients who got the flu vaccine had 24 percent lower death rates from all causes during the study period. They also had lower rates of hospitalization for heart attack, but the difference wasn’t big enough to rule out the possibility that it was due to chance. One limitation of the study is that researchers weren’t able to assess the possibility that some people had undiagnosed diabetes, the authors note. It’s also possible that people who get vaccinated are healthier in other ways than people who skip their annual flu vaccine, the authors also point out.

    Even so, the findings highlight the benefits of vaccination, said Dr. Laura Rosella, a public health researcher at the University of Toronto who wasn’t involved in the study. “It is well known that people with chronic conditions, including cardiovascular disease, are more likely to suffer complications from the flu,” Rosella said by email. “For this reason,” Rosella added, “the best protection among people with chronic conditions is preventing the flu in the first place, which can be achieved by receiving the influenza vaccine.”

    https://www.yahoo.com/news/flu-vacci...78.html?ref=gs

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