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K-State Researcher Finds That the 1918 Spanish Flu Virus Can Infect Swine and Resulted in Current Lineage of H1N1 Swine Influenza Viruses
Date:4/30/2009

p>For the study, the researchers used the 1918 pandemic virus and a 1930 H1N1 influenza virus for experimental infections in swine. The 1930 virus was chosen as a virus because it is thought to be a descendent of the 1918 virus, Richt said.

The researchers did not find a significant difference in effects from the 1918 and 1930 viruses in infected pigs. This was surprising, since the 1918 virus killed more than 20 million people and was lethal to ferrets, mice and macaques. Another surprising finding from the study was the rapid antibody response in the animals infected with the 1918 virus, which is not typically reported for the swine influenza virus.

Richt said he plans to conduct a follow-up project that will study what makes a swine flu virus a pandemic flu virus.

The researchers conducted the study in the biosafety-level 4 laboratory and animal cubicle at the National Centre for Foreign Animal Disease in Canada.

Source: Juergen A. Richt, 785-532-4408, jricht@k-state.edu

http://www.k-state.edu/media/mediaguide/bios/richtbio.html

News release prepared by: Kristin Hodges, 785-532-6415, khodges2@k-state.edu


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