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SCI/TECH: 1918 killer flu virus to be tested in UW lab

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posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 03:57 PM
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The Spanish Flu epidemic of 1914-1918 was reputed to have infected upwards of 1 billion people & killed an estimated 30 to 50 million during the Great War, Now, scientists in the US have recieved a grant of $12.7 million to study the virus, which is part of a $1.7 billion budget in biodefense.
 



seattlepi.nwsource.com
University of Washington scientists plan to infect monkeys with a killer flu virus grown from tissue exhumed from victims of the 1918 epidemic.

They hope the insight they gain will unravel the mystery of why tens of millions of people worldwide died from the virulent flu strain and lead to development of better vaccines and drugs that may save lives in the future.

"This was the most deadly infectious disease in the history of mankind, killing at least 40 million people," said Dr. Michael Katze, a UW microbiologist and principal investigator for the local arm of the project.



Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Saving Humanity from Pandemics or creating "Man Made viruses for population control"?
Why the continual rehashing of this article over a 5 year period?
Indeed, the first supporting URL is dated October 2 '04, however the further I delved into what I thought was a breaking news story, the stranger the overall picture of this story emerged. After researching the 1914-18 Spanish Flu epidemic, it quickly became apparent that as far back as 1999 this virus had been extensively studied.


CNN
February 15, 1999: ...Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, which reported Monday that researchers for the first time have completely analyzed a critical gene from the killer influenza virus.

Many of the older articles on the study of the 1914-18 Spanish Flu epidemic are linking back to this article posted on September 18, 2004.

Related News Links:
www.tribnet.com
news.bbc.co.uk
www.cnn.com


[edit on 1-10-2004 by Banshee]



posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 04:40 PM
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This news disturbs me.

Messing with viruses always fills me with fear. Doesn't help countless films show your dumb @ss human messing with something then unleshing it unknowingly into the population.

AIDs was enough, not again pleeease!



posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 04:54 PM
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The story is interesting to me in that I was not aware that we actually ever had the virus itself. I have seen several documentaries on the pandemic and the "rub" was their failure to obtain a viable sample. If I remember correctly they even went to Alaska to dig up bodies in the permafrost - hoping that the conditions would preserve the virus.

While you see the potential misuse of such research - I see an opportunity to understand avian influenza better and possibly find more effective vaccines or treatments. Considering the increase in deadly influenza outbreaks over the last year or so, it's is only a matter of time before we have our next signficant pandemic. I just wish there was more money available for research.

Really interesting article - glad you posted it.



posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 04:54 PM
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Well...seems the goverments are gonna start messing with biological warfare huh!

Spanish Flu, also called the Spanish Lady, was one of the major diseases that wiped out many in the recent centuries...passed through europe like wildfire by rats and fleas on infected wool etc.

All they have to do is splice the sequence for SF onto something like a easy contacted disease...say chicken pox...and woolaaa...perfect bioweapon.

1918 spanish flu

Wikipedia

spanish flu as bioweapon

Having been trained in biowarfare and outbreak scenarios.....this isnt good.



posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 06:22 PM
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There was already a thread posted on this subject, although it didn't really go anywhere.
Previous thread



[edit on 1-10-2004 by cimmerius]



posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 06:37 PM
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None of this ever directly worries me, as I live and work in a fairly remote location. These pandemics really pose the greatest threat to those who live in highly populated areas. I haven't even had a cold in years lol. I've always thought that living in metropolitan areas was a bad idea. From what I understand, many nomadic cultures that live in regions with arid climates often out-live those of us in the western world, with a life expectancy upwards of 80 years lol(and that's on a diet primarily composed of dairy and meat). Last I heard, the popular theory as to why this happens is the fact that they live in groups no larger than 25 and rarely have any contact with "outsiders".

The real problem is... this place is getting far too freakin' crowded. Viruses don't need to be created as a method for pop control because old mom nature takes care of that for us lol. It's just a matter of time.



posted on Oct, 2 2004 @ 12:09 AM
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what a coincidence that this comes about with flu season right around the corner. keep an eye out for spanish flu outbreaks.



posted on Oct, 2 2004 @ 01:12 AM
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We seemed to have been genitically able to resist the virus after that time and it probably mutated instead of being wiped out. They should leave that crap in the ground. Great book on this subject: Wolfhour by Robert R. McCammon.

doctorduh



posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 01:49 AM
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Originally posted by Gryffen
Well...seems the goverments are gonna start messing with biological warfare huh!

Spanish Flu, also called the Spanish Lady, was one of the major diseases that wiped out many in the recent centuries...passed through europe like wildfire by rats and fleas on infected wool etc.

All they have to do is splice the sequence for SF onto something like a easy contacted disease...say chicken pox...and woolaaa...perfect bioweapon.

1918 spanish flu

Wikipedia

spanish flu as bioweapon

Having been trained in biowarfare and outbreak scenarios.....this isnt good.



First off, when did governments stop working on biowarfare?

Secondly, since when is influenza transmitted via rats, fleas and wool?

Thirdly, why do they need splice "the sequence" (for what gene exactly?) into something else? Influenza is airborne and highly transmissible already. What good is a hemmagglutinin gene going to do in chicken pox?

Fourth, how is a chicken pox with say HA and NA genes somehow a perfect bioweapon? Assuming your bizarre genetic engineering turns it into a highly virulent airborne strain (because, you know, obviously influenza is not a highly virulent airborne virus....), how is that perfect? It will not infect only certain genotypes. It will spread beyond borders. It is an indiscriminate killer. So what good does that do? Let us assume we release the 1918 version of Influenza virus again, what happens? Probably 200 or 300 million people die this time. All over the world. In every country, including millions of Americans. How is that a good bioweapon exactly?

Fifth, if you don't actually know any of this, how were you trained in biowarfare and outbreak scenarios? I mean besides all the movies you watched.

Lastly, this isn't a doomsday scenario here. Microbiologists have been playing with stuff as nasty or nastier in labs around the world for many decades and the world has not ended. Smallpox has not re-emerged. There haven't been outbreaks of Ebola from the CDC labs in Atlanta. The worst that has happened was the Russians killing a few hundred people with anthrax. The virus is not going to escape from UW and run rampant across the world, it isn't a bioweapon and I'd worry more about how the over- and misuse of antiobiotics is leading to untreatable bacterial infections before I'd worry about influenza wiping us out. Hell, I'd worry about the vanc-resistant bacteria Maxygen engineered a few years back a whole lot more than I'd worry about influenza. Some people actually died within hours of being infected with the 1918 influenza strain--that beats the hell out of the slow death from necrosis by a vancomycin resistant Staph in my book.



posted on Oct, 23 2004 @ 11:05 PM
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From NewScientist.com: Experts fear escape of 1918 flu from lab

The 1918 flu virus spread across the world in three months and killed at least 40 million people. If it escaped from a lab today, the death toll could be far higher. The potential implications of an infected lab worker and spread beyond the lab are terrifying, says D. A. Henderson of the University of Pittsburgh, a leading biosecurity expert.

Yet despite the danger, researchers in the US are working with reconstructed versions of the virus at less than the maximum level of containment. Many other experts are worried about the risks.


Click link for the full article...

This is crazy

It seems like there is just a question of time before we got a worldwide deadly plague to deal with, deliberately or not...



posted on Dec, 1 2004 @ 08:33 AM
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Originally posted by Hellmutt

It seems like there is just a question of time before we got a worldwide deadly plague to deal with, deliberately or not...


...Yep. Very soon. And it's been predicted since the 1970's - although the change in virus filaments was first documented in 1949...

my research into a disease called fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD) suggests that it's linked to the 1918 flu - and shows that it's definitely linked to the current avian flu H5N1 strain

...FMD pathology started showing up in the early 1990's - it looks to me like it resulted from a scrapie contamination of the WWI soldiers' mass vaccinations, then mutated quickly into the killer flu. [No proof except the pathology]

...FMD first was acknowledged officially in 1938, after it was found to be spreading congenitally. It has been spreading and mutating since, and first appeared in domestic turkeys in the USA in 1980. It turned up in quail in Japan in 1996 - and researchers in Brazil described the pathology in avian reovirus... [Full verifiable documentation available]

...The 1918 flu strain receives much attention because it is unique - and involves a mis-folded actin protein that directly infects connective tissue stem cells. ...Also, it is linked to a huge variety of secondary and infectious chronic diseases that usually progress very slowly before causing stroke, heart attack or kidney failure. ...Looks like the 1918 flu is the evolutionary link between scrapie and now epidemic 'fibrosis' diseases.

...The new H5N1 strain has been predicted since the 1970's and is likely a mutation resulting from the original form bouncing back and forth between humans and animals.

...H5N1 bird flu is not the only new disease mutation that's suddenly 'appeared' in the world - there are many, many more - and they will interact and spiral soon.



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