A French study of the 1918-1919 influenza pandemic, which analysed mortality rates in approximately three-quarters of the European population, has concluded that it is unlikely that the virus, often described as Spanish Flu, originated in Europe.
Published in the May issue of Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses, the research shows a high degree of synchronicity in the 14 countries studied, including Spain, with the flu peaking in October to November 1918.
The study, carried out by a team from INSERM, the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research, provides invaluable background briefing for clinicians and media during the current pandemic alert.
Other useful background information in the paper includes the start and finish dates of the pandemic outbreaks in the 14 countries studied, with graphs showing the peaks in each country.
Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses is the first journal to specialise exclusively on influenza and other respiratory viruses and is edited by one of the world's leading flu experts, Dr Alan Hampson. It is the official journal of the International Society for Influenza and Other Respiratory Virus Diseases, an independent scientific professional society promoting the prevention, detection, treatment, and control of influenza and other respiratory virus diseases.
Materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.
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