ANTC67H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 3: Chemical Warfare, Influenza A Virus Subtype H2N2, Case Fatality Rate

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Published on 19 Apr 2013
School
UTSC
Department
Anthropology
Course
ANTC67H3
Professor
Chapter 3: The Influenza Case Study
1
Influenza Pandemics
- global spread of influenza dates back to 1889-90
When the Asiatic flu spread out from Russia to Europe and
eventually North and South America
- CAUSE of DISEASE = the A variant of the virus, subtype H2N2 or H2N8
- Estimate = one million people died at the close of this pandemic
Contextualizing the Disease
- 1918 influenza pandemic:
The 1918 “Spanish flu” = caused by a virus H1N1 strain that had its
origins in the avian world
There was no medical cure + there were concomitant respiratory
complications (pneumonia or broncho-pneumonia)
Depending on the community = the level of morbidity could be
strikingly high with as much as 1/3 of the population suffering from
this “novel” flu caused by antigenic shift
[antigenic shift = Large fragments of genetic material are replaced with genes
from other influenza types from other species. Associated with occasional /
periodic world-wide outbreaks of influenzas]
* The H1N1 strain was novel in 1918, becoming highly virulent and easily
transmissible and consequently is classified as a pandemic strain as opposed to a
seasonal strain (caused by antigenic drift). Mukherjea, 2010.
The ease of long distance transportation via ships (e.g. soldiers during
WWI) = facilitated the spread of influenza around the world
In only a few locations = physical isolation provided protection to
residents allowing them to escape this deadly scourge
Unfortunately, our knowledge regarding this particular epidemic is
limited owing to a variety factors:
It occurred at the end of WW I = the disease was poorly
understood at the time
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Document Summary

Global spread of influenza dates back to 1889-90. When the asiatic flu spread out from russia to europe and eventually north and south america. Cause of disease = the a variant of the virus, subtype h2n2 or h2n8. Estimate = one million people died at the close of this pandemic. The 1918 spanish flu = caused by a virus h1n1 strain that had its origins in the avian world. There was no medical cure + there were concomitant respiratory complications (pneumonia or broncho-pneumonia) Depending on the community = the level of morbidity could be strikingly high with as much as 1/3 of the population suffering from this novel flu caused by antigenic shift. [antigenic shift = large fragments of genetic material are replaced with genes from other influenza types from other species. Associated with occasional / periodic world-wide outbreaks of influenzas]

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