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An Atlanta hospital set up a mobile ER to deal with the large number of flu cases. AP Photo/David Goldman

Why did the flu kill 80,000 Americans last year?

Part of the problem was a mismatch between the influenza strains circulating and the vaccine available. Here's how annual flu shots are formulated.
Could the yearly flu shot become a thing of the past? AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File

Influenza: The search for a universal vaccine

Flu virus mutates so quickly that one year's vaccine won't work on the next year's common strains. But rational design – a new way to create vaccines – might pave the way for more lasting solutions.
Every year in Canada, there is an average of 23,000 cases of lab-confirmed influenza, 12,000 people who need to be admitted to hospital and 3,500 flu deaths. (Shutterstock)

The flu shot: Who should get it and why

As influenza season begins in North America, many people wonder whether to get a flu shot. Our expert delves into the pros and cons of the vaccine and how it works.
What if it wasn’t back to the drawing board every year for a new flu shot? Andrew Kelly/Reuters

Influenza: The search for a universal vaccine

Flu virus mutates so quickly that one year's vaccine won't work on the next year's common strains. But a new way to create vaccines, called 'rational design,' might pave the way for more lasting solutions.

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