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Avian flu pandemic could be brought under control in three weeks

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.331.7513.367-a (Published 11 August 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:367
  1. Jane Parry
  1. Hong Kong

    An avian influenza pandemic could be prevented but only with swift and targeted intervention at an early stage, say two research papers published online on 3 August in the journals Nature and Science (http://www.nature.com/, doi: 10.1038/nature04017 and http://www.sciencemag.org/, doi: 10.1126/science.1115717).

    Both studies assumed that each person infected would transmit the disease to fewer than two people. Although H5N1 avian flu has very low virulence, no one can predict the reproduction number of any future flu pandemic strain as it could recombine with an existing highly virulent human flu strain. Assuming a reproduction number of less than two, however, both models predict that an outbreak …

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