Posted by: tristar3research | June 1, 2009

$1B for Swine Flu Virus- More Pharmaco Feed to Come!

Companies poised for swine flu vaccine drive, reports PharmaFocus, in a $1B Obama-led drugmaker support program:

Hey, Glaxy, I smell dollas!

Hey, Glaxy, I smell dollas!

Pharmaceutical manufacturers now have access to the swine flu seed virus that can be used to start full-blown production of a vaccine. But companies are still awaiting the go-ahead from public health agencies. The seed virus has been developed by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and sent to various drugmakers, including Sanofi-Aventis and GlaxoSmithKline. Open-ended federal contract: Sanofi is among a group of companies that are the recipients of a $1 billion contract awarded by the US Dept of Health & Human Services to manufacture vaccines against the H1N1 flu strain.

Do NOT call me Swine Flu!

CDC: Do NOT call me "Swine Flu"!

Turns out, this “Novel Flu A” virus has origins in European swine flus from the early 1990s, according to the Columbia University College of Physicians, writing in the New England Journal of Medicine this month.

Geographic Dependence, Surveillance, and Origins of the 2009 Influenza A (H1N1) Virus: In April 2009, a new strain of human H1N1 influenza A virus was identified in Mexico. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), as of May 25, 2009, the virus had spread to 43 countries, with 12,515 reported cases and 91 associated deaths, and it has been assessed as having pandemic potential. Genomic analysis of the 2009 influenza A (H1N1) virus in humans indicates that it is closely related to common reassortant swine influenza A viruses isolated in North America, Europe, and Asia The segments coding for the polymerase complex, hemagglutinin, nuclear protein, and nonstructural proteins show high similarity with the swine H1N2 influenza A viruses isolated in North America in the late 1990s. H1N2 and other subtypes are descendants of the triple-reassortant swine H3N2 viruses isolated in North America. They have spread in swine hosts around the globe and have been found to infect humans. The segments coding for the neuraminidase and the matrix proteins of the new human H1N1 virus are, however, distantly related to swine viruses isolated in Europe in the early 1990s.

Nucleotide Identities of Human and Swine Influenza A (H1N1) Viruses from within and outside North America, Europe, and Asia

NEJM.org: Nucleotide Identities of Human and Swine Influenza A (H1N1) Viruses from within and outside North America, Europe, and Asia

Bad News: According to researchers at Berkeley, “viruses are sneakier than we thought.” Viruses are molecular marauders, plundering cells for the resources they need to multiply. Of central importance for viruses is the ability to commandeer cellular gene expression machinery. Several human herpesviruses put the breaks on normal cellular gene expression to divert the associated enzymes and resources towards their own viral genes (a process that is normally protective, called polyadenylation). Cells decode genetic information in a process called transcription, during which the DNA is unzipped and read by enzymes. It’s going to be an interesting fall flu season…

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