A week has passed since the World Health Organization convened its first emergency meeting to deal with menacing new flu virus thought to have sickened thousands and killed dozens of young Mexican men. New cases continue to tally up around the world (15 countries so far) and the virus is spreading person-to-person. The outbreak has been ranked at an unprecedented level 5 (out of 6 ) on the WHO’s pandemic scale. But for now, at least, it appears the world has dodged a bullet. Most cases are non-lethal, if not exactly mild. This is not 1918 Spanish flu redux. Yet. And if it does mutate into something more dangerous, we now have viral “seed stock” and a battalion of scientists working around the clock on a vaccine.
So what has been learned by this apparent near-miss? (more…)
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