Influenza virus image — FluWeb Historical Influenza Database — Spanish Flu 1918-19

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NMRC urgent research into a potential avian influenza-induced pandemic

The project is headed by Professor John Mathews and involves contributions from a number of top researchers in the areas of infectious disease modeling and vaccine testing. Mathematical methods will be used to analyse historic and contemporary data, so as to provide better understanding of the spread of influenza, and of the likely effects of social and medical measures for its control.

An important theme of the project is to consolidate our knowledge about how past exposure to non-pandemic influenza could provide short-lived protection against any new pandemic, and to explore the implications of this for prevention today. Another theme is to explore the severity of influenza during pandemics, and to identify social and medical factors that might reduce the dose of virus transmitted, or otherwise reduce the severity of infection.

The insights from the modeling will also help to identify gaps in knowledge and understanding about the basic biology of influenza, stimulate new research to fill those gaps, and thus offer the prospect of more effective vaccines and treatments for the future control of influenza.

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FluWeb Historical Influenza Database,, accessed [date]

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Some of the PDF files linked to the database will contain text that has been generated through an OCR (optical character recognition) scan of original documents. This greatly reduces this final size of the files and allows for the searching of text contained in the documents.

Wherever an OCR file is available it will be clearly labelled, and an unprocessed image file will also be available.

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