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Lethality of H1N1 Influenza Virus Increasing According to Latest Analysis of Virus Peptide Genomic Data
Date:6/10/2009

Boston Biotech Firm Reports First Rise in 76 Years of Replikin Count* of H1N1 Lethality Gene

BOSTON, June 10 /PRNewswire/ -- An analysis of the latest peptide genomic data for the H1N1 influenza virus indicates that the current global outbreak of H1N1 is increasing in its capacity for lethality. The new sequence data on PubMed of the past two weeks through June 10, 2009 showed an increase in the Replikin Count* of the Replikin Lethality Gene in the pB1 genomic area from a mean of 2+/-0.2 in 2008 to a mean of 3.2+/-3.7 in 2009 (p<0.001). The Replikin Count of the Lethality Gene in 836 previous H1N1 influenza virus isolates has remained essentially unchanged (at 2) since 1933.

These analyses were conducted by the Boston-based biotech firm Replikins, Ltd. (http://www.replikins.com) using its FluForecast(R) software. A year ago (4/7/08), using the same software, the firm predicted the current H1N1 virus outbreak, and last month (5/23/09) an increase in the Replikin Count of the Replikin Infectivity Gene in the hemagglutinin area indicated a marked increase in infectivity of the evolving H1N1 virus.

"Last month the H1N1 genomic data indicated some bad and some good news. While it indicated an increase in the infectivity of the H1N1 virus, its lethality appeared to remain relatively low," noted Sam Bogoch, MD, PhD, chairman of Replikins Ltd. "However, the FluForecast(R) analysis of new data of the past few weeks, through June 10th, on 144 new specimens published on PubMed, indicate an increase in the current H1N1 outbreak's capacity for lethality. Since the software also permitted the automated analysis of all sequence data available on PubMed for all previous years, it was noted that this is the first such significant increase in the Replikin Count of the H1N1 Lethality Gene in 76 years. This is cause for concern and an accelerated vaccine effort."

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SOURCE Replikins Ltd.
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