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Avian Flu Roundup

May 19, 2006

Scientists are also preparing for a possible flu pandemic. We report on a hopeful new finding concerning avian flu.

Transcript

BOB HIRSHON (host):
A vaccine for bird flu. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Researchers at St. Jude Hospital in Memphis have announced that a new flu vaccine designed for use against human flu protected lab animals from avian flu as well. Avian flu can be passed from birds to humans and other mammals and may reach the United States in the coming year. Health officials fear that a mutated form of the virus will be able to spread from human to human and are attempting to develop preemptive measures.

Also, this week we have correction. Recently, in some markets we ran a story about how virus infection rates in birds can affect people. We meant to say that robins are major carriers of West Nile virus, but instead said that they carry avian flu. Robins are not known to be important carriers of the avian flu virus, and Science Update regrets the error. I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.