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Articles on Pandemic flu

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‘The Scream,’ by Edvard Munch, hand-coloured lithograph version from 1895. (Munchmuseet)

Why ‘The Scream’ has gone viral again

Artist Edvard Munch depicted despair provoked by disease in turn-of-the-century works. In these coronavirus times, his iconic image speaks to our anxieties about illness and societal collapse.
People and animals live side by side – and can have pathogens in common. Nichola Hill

Influenza’s wild origins in the animals around us

No one then knew a virus caused the 1918 flu pandemic, much less that animals can be a reservoir for human illnesses. Now virus ecology research and surveillance are key for public health efforts.
Computers may play an important role in preparing us for the next viral outbreak – whether flu or Ebola. UW Institute for Protein Design

Designing antiviral proteins via computer could help halt the next pandemic

This antivirus software protects health, not computers. Researchers are beginning to combat deadly infections using computer-generated antiviral proteins – a valuable tool to fight a future pandemic.
Huge swathes of Tasmania have burned this year. Warren Frey/Tasmania Fire Service

After Tasmania’s year of disasters, bushfire tops the state’s growing list of natural hazards

A comprehensive analysis of Tasmania's natural disaster risks has identified bushfire as the biggest threat, alongside emerging issues such as disease epidemics and heatwaves.
As part of pandemic preparation, in the early 2000s many countries amassed large stockpiles of the influenza neuraminidase inhibitor Tamiflu. Tony Hisgett/Flickr

Controversies in medicine: the rise and fall of the challenge to Tamiflu

One of the biggest recent controversies in medicine involves the effectiveness of the antiviral drug Tamiflu. Governments have stockpiled the drug but many have raised doubts about its usefulness.
The pandemic flu virus spread around the world in several waves, causing illness in 20% to 50% of infected people and death in 1% to 5%. British Red Cross/Flickr

World War One’s role in the worst ever flu pandemic

The great influenza pandemic of 1918-19, often called the Spanish flu, caused about 50 million deaths worldwide; far more than the deaths from combat casualties in the World War One (1914-18). In fact…
Pandemics produce an extraordinary outpouring of emotion which is out of proportion to the number of actual cases and deaths. EPA/Wu Hong

No evidence H7N9 spreads between humans – but fear does

It’s ten years since SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) upset our complacency about infectious diseases and now we are faced by another “new” disease. H7N9 bird flu is currently spreading through…
Does Tamiflu work the way its manufacturer claims?

Drug trial results must be made public

A team of public health experts has called for the release of all clinical drug trial results for independent analysis following…

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