Archive for May 27th, 2012

Pandemic 2009 H1N1 vaccination produces antibodies against multiple flu strains

27 May, 2012

See on Scoop.itVirology News

“The pandemic 2009 H1N1 vaccine can generate antibodies in vaccinated individuals not only against the H1N1 virus, but also against other influenza virus strains including H5N1 and H3N2.”

 

And a possible reason for this could be that the H1N1pdm virus’ haemagglutinin is a natural “ancestral” sequence – the kind that HIV vaccine researchers are looking for for gp120/160, which have been shown to elicit a wider spectrum of cross-reacting antibodies than “evolved” proteins, or ones that have been selected for antigenic escape in humans for a good few viral generations.

 

Flu vaccine graphic by Russell Kightley Media

See on www.eurekalert.org

Risk factors for West Nile virus – by Dr Pandula Siribaddana – Helium

27 May, 2012

See on Scoop.itVirology News

“The disease is more common in temperate and tropical geographical areas and usually the disease is said to be found in Africa, Middle East and West Asia. But, from recent times, almost all American states have got affected and from time to time there are outbreaks of large number of patients with West Nile Disease.”

 

Useful little review on the how/why/what of WNV.  Including the fact that we Africans have been living with it forever…B-)

See on www.helium.com

Trends in Intussusception Hospitalizations Among US Infants Before and After Implementation of the Rotavirus Vaccination Program, 2000–2009

27 May, 2012

See on Scoop.itVirology News

“A small increase in intussusception rates was seen among infants aged 8–11 weeks, to whom most first doses of rotavirus vaccine were given, but no sustained population-level change in overall intussusception hospitalizations rates in US infants was observed after implementation of the US rotavirus vaccination program. Although an association between intussusception and rotavirus vaccination cannot be established by this ecologic analysis alone, even if the low risk with the first dose exists, it is outweighed by the well-documented benefits of vaccination of US infants”

This is a big deal- a very important, big deal: human rotavirus kills more than 500 000 people a year (mainly very little), and rotavirus vaccines have been bedevilled with the suspicion that they cause telescoping of the intestine, or intussusception.  Which can be fatal, and is not something you want happening to your healthy baby.

However, and however: I have taught my students for years to be aware of relative risks when talking about vaccines, and there is absolutely no doubt that even the Wyeth vaccine could have been considered “safe” in a developing country environment, where the threat of death due to diarrhoea and dehyderation caused by rotavirus, would have been far greater than any threat from the vaccine.

I thank Rusdsell Kightley Media for the rotavirus graphic

See on jid.oxfordjournals.org