posted on Jul, 26 2009 @ 11:40 AM
I did some research into flu viruses and found out a few interesting facts. Unlike other viruses such as polio or smallpox, which have DNA that
mutates very slowly, flu viruses have RNA which is much more prone to mutation during reproduction. Like other viruses, flu virus RNA is surrounded by
a protein shell that has specificly shaped proteins sticking out of the shell. Think of a soccer ball with spikes sticking out of it. These spikes,
because of their unique shape, are able to attach themselves to a particular kind of receptor that in the case of flu, exist on lung cells. When a flu
virus comes in contact with the right kind of receptor, it then injects it's RNA into the attached cell, and that RNA then cannibalizes that cells
genetic material in order to make more spiked soccer balls. Eventually the cell dies from being taken apart from the inside but by then many, many
copies of the virus have been released. Antibodies are different kinds of proteins that also have unique shapes and when the right kind of antibody
comes into contact with the right kind of virus, it attaches itself to one of the spikes, thereby preventing that spike from 'docking' with a
cell's receptor. When the body makes millions of copies of the same antibody, than all of the spikes on a virus are blocked.
Flu viruses have 8 genes. If a host cell has two different viruses inside it at the same time, then it's possible for those two viruses to swap genes
or pieces of genes from each other to produce a completely new strain. The 1918 spanish flu was a combination of human and swine flu. Not all
combinations are viable. In other words, some combinations of genes are incapable of reproducing. It therefore stands to reason that the more strains
of flu are present in the same host cell, the more possible combinations of genes you could get and the less likely it is that a particular new strain
would be viable and able to reproduce itself instead of disappearing.
So this new swine flu strain that started in Mexico (by the way, almost all new flu strains start in the far east and move westward), has been
determined to have genetic material from three different swine flus(from different parts of the world), one human flu and one strain of (asian) bird
flu. That means that all five viruses had to have been in not only the same (human/animal) body at the same time but also the very same cell at the
same time AND have combined in just the right way so that the new virus is capable of reproducing itself. ON the face of it, pretty unlikely to have
occurred naturally. Extremely so in fact.
Flu vaccines made from last winter's flu strains are only partially effective against similar strains because some but not all of the antibodies
produced by the vaccine will actually block the spikes from docking with the receptors. But antibodies generated from ordinary flu vaccines, will be
almost useless against completely new strains such as this new swine flu. Healthy immune systems produce more antibodies(of various shapes) all the
time (compared to weak systems) and therefore may have enough of the right kind to nip a new infection in the bud or at least slow it down so that the
symptoms are mild.
Typical symptoms of a flu are a) high fever, b) muscle or joint pain c) headaches d) congestion. There is a growing body of anecdotal evidence as well
as clinical evidence in Europe, that high fevers have a beneficial side effect of killing off any cells in the body that are cancerous. At least one
clinic in Germany has been curing cancer patients for years by inducing a temporary fever using high frequency radio waves(along with other therapies