West Nile and Bird Flu: Two Increasingly Dangerous Viruses

"I can't imagine anything more catastrophic effecting the human race today than a pandemic of H5N1 influenza around the world. ...Anywhere from 180 to 360 million people could die from this particular strain of virus."

- Michael T. Osterholm, Ph.D., University of Minnesota

June 2, 2005   Minneapolis, Minnesota - 

West Nile Fever Virus

Left: Photomicrograph of West Nile Fever Virus. Right: Photograph of Culex pipiens female mosquito, carrier of West Nile Fever Virus, courtesy Entomology Image Gallery.
Left: Photomicrograph of West Nile Fever Virus. Right: Photograph of Culex pipiens female mosquito, carrier of West Nile Fever Virus, courtesy Entomology Image Gallery.

     
Dr. Henry Masur at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Washington, D. C., told Associated Press this week that the West Nile Fever Virus working its way through the United States is more virulent than its viral cousin in Europe, Asia and Africa and "has caused more cases of paralysis than there were in many years of polio." By 2005, it has spread to nearly every state. 

 

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