Thursday, May 7, 2009

This one slipped under my radar

I was watching Dr Chan of the WHO the other day give a rundown on the swine flu. It was the usual don't run for the hills cyoa don't panic the general population type of presentation. I almost fell asleep listening because I've heard and read so many of those types of presentations. But one thing slightly peaked my interest. She said that this virus could go away for a while and come back in a mutated form and be much worse than the initial outbreak. Now I'm thinking it would be some stronger form of the same virus that combination of swine, bird and human. Then I came upon what their real concern was about in all this:

The genetic building blocks of the swine flu virus come from pigs, humans and birds. Scientists believe that the virus mutated into its present version in pigs which may have been exposed to an avian version of the flu, which then mutated into its present form. Disease experts are especially concerned that the ability to mutate seen so far in the virus could eventually see it combine with the human immunodeficiency virus, which causes AIDS.

We were lucky with the last outbreak of bird flu which is about 82% fatal. The bird flu was rather difficult to spread from bird to human then human to human. That is no longer the case. With the possibility of swine flu combining with HIV there is also the thought of it joining with other nasty viruses like ebola, marburg or other hemoragic virus. Even though that might be highly unlikely due to the locations where the latter viruses are found it may just be something to consider. With ebola there is no treatment or cure and it's always fatal. How would we deal with such combinations? There would be quarintines and like Mexico did the shutting down of entire cities. This could be much like the black plague that wiped out 2/3 the population of Europe with trucks and haz mat crews traveling the streets to bag and pick up the dead. Scary thoughts for sure.


Wayne said...

I'm just a happy clam being locked away in my office with my laptop.

wot? Me worry?

an average patriot said...

I heard that they thought this started in Mexico but now they think it was started in California first and the kicker if that that it was a human that gave it to the pigs.

Anyway they are concerned with mutation as this friggen thing keeps doing the same but in 1918 they they beat in when it died in the spring but came back in the winter and killed 150 million.

Tom Harper said...

Maybe I'm just jaded or have my head in the sand, but I'm getting burned out on all this nonstop hysteria from the CDC.

They might as well just cut to the chase: the common cold virus will merge with the AIDS virus, so that every time somebody with AIDS sneezes, everybody in the vicinity will have AIDS. Oh, and it'll merge with distemper, so all our pets will die too. And of course if your dog or cat with distemper sneezes or coughs, you'll get AIDS.

I'm not saying these concerns aren't valid or that the CDC's predictions aren't possible. But it just seems like they're more concerned with scaring the public and keeping everyone on edge 24/7.

End of rant.

BBC said...

This could be much like the black plague that wiped out 2/3 the population of Europe with trucks and haz mat crews traveling the streets to bag and pick up the dead. Scary thoughts for sure...

Ah, population reduction and employment for you. I don't see any down side in this for you.

Unless of course it gets you also, but lets face it, something is going to get you sooner or later.

Roger Owen Green said...

I HAD heard this, and it's the reason I don't think the govts are overreacting.

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