After a high-level meeting this week, work on the avian influenza H5N1 virus will probably continue by people who are not NIH funded. This is in the wake of a global debate about the risks and benefits of such research and a voluntary moratorium on the experiments lasting nearly a year.
A new vaccine strategy, which uses synthetic messenger RNA (mRNA) instead of proteins purified from viruses, could make flu shots cheaper, safer, and easier to produce. German scientists have shown that they have been able to protect mice, ferrets, and pigs against influenza.
It’s been reported that fruit bats in Guatemala are hosting a new type of the influenza A virus, according to a new study published in the journal PNAS. The novel subtype has been designated H17 and has diverged from known influenza viruses long ago.