bird flu

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  • Bird Flu 'could mutate to cause deadly human pandemic.'
    • deadly to humans.
      • only transmitted by close contact with infected birds.
        • 332 people died since 2003.
    • could mutate into a form that could be spread through human coughs and sneezes.
      • could cause lethal pandemic that could kill millions of people
      • Prof Fouchiers team proved the theory correct after testing on ferrets.
      • five key differences between the genetic structure of bird flu virus and earlier human flu pandemic.
    • airbourne mutation of H5N1 unlikely.
      • Prof Derek Smith thinks more analysis is needed to make it likely.
        • Prof Smith says Fouchier's work enables them to prioritise particular experiments to obtain the info.
    • NSAAB believe the study's publishing could be used by terrorists to create a bioweapon.
      • wants to allow only a selected access to any info omitted from a scientific publication.
      • Prof Fouchier thinks the findings should be made freely available so wider scientific community can build on the research.

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