Vaccine developers are already adapting first-generation COVID vaccines to get ahead of new variants could possibly evade them. While variants have been shown to reduce the effects of antibodies, it’s unclear how much that impacts the vaccine’s overall power.  

117 pages of leaked documents reveal that early in the pandemic, China offered the world a partial picture of what they knew and a more optimistic forecast than what was evidenced on the ground.   Despite the virus’s novelty, there was “evidence of clear missteps” and “a…

This season’s flu vaccine isn't a good match for the severe strain hitting children across the US, the CDC reported.   For the first time in nearly 3 decades, influenza B—which hits kids harder than the elderly—is the dominant strain as opposed to influenza A. 21 of the 32…

A universal flu vaccine just became a bit more possible.  That’s big news as concern grows over when—not if—the next global pandemic will hit, and what strain it will be.   Researchers discovered a powerful antibody in a patient sample that proved effective against decades…

Predicting what fast-mutating influenza viruses will do is never easy, but the evidence so far indicates that North America should brace for a bad year. Flu season, which can start as early as October and typically peaks in January or February, kills between 12,000 and 79,…

How do flu super-strains happen? When 2 or more strains have the opportunity to convene within one cell. Such an opportunity is created when migratory birds mix with local fowl—as when red knots from Argentina arrive on New Jersey’s Delaware Bay, a hotbed of avian…

Some 12 years ago, surges in deadly H5N1 bird flu cases sparked a flurry of activity—experimental vaccines tested, antivirals stockpiled. Then it faded into obscurity; no one quite knows why. Certain things about influenza “don’t quite add up completely,” says Nancy Cox,…

The latest fix for the ultra-hacked lifestyle: Vaev, the tissue that lets you schedule your winter cold. At $80 a box, ultra-chic  tissues claims to enable getting sick “on your own schedule.” The “tissue that carries a human sneeze”—or at least a cocktail of ingredients…

Trust in vaccines is eroding to the point that they could become useless, warned an important editorial in The New York Times this past weekend.   Online, “anti-vaccine propaganda has outpaced pro-vaccine public health information”—and defense against the onslaught is too…

Before it went on to take 50 million lives worldwide, Boston’s 1918 flu outbreak started with military personnel returning home to overcrowded barracks from the Great War. The city health commissioner William Creighton Woodward had seen flu outbreaks before, but not like…