Scientists create hybrid flu that can go airborne

  title={Scientists create hybrid flu that can go airborne},
  author={Ed Yong},
  • E. Yong
  • Published 2 May 2013
  • Biology
  • Nature
H5N1 virus with genes from H1N1 can spread through the air between mammals. 


Airborne Transmission of Influenza A/H5N1 Virus Between Ferrets
Avian A/H5N1 influenza viruses can acquire the capacity for airborne transmission between mammals without recombination in an intermediate host and therefore constitute a risk for human pandemic influenza.
H5N1 Hybrid Viruses Bearing 2009/H1N1 Virus Genes Transmit in Guinea Pigs by Respiratory Droplet
Transmission studies showed that the H1N1 virus genes encoding acidic polymerase and nonstructural protein made the H5N1irus transmissible by respiratory droplet between guinea pigs without killing them, suggesting that avian H5n1 subtype viruses do have the potential to acquire mammalian transmissibility by reassortment in current agricultural scenarios.
Experimental adaptation of an influenza H5 haemagglutinin (HA) confers respiratory droplet transmission to a reassortant H5 HA/H1N1 virus in ferrets
Results indicate that H5 HA can convert to an HA that supports efficient viral transmission in mammals, and will help individuals conducting surveillance in regions with circulating H5N1 viruses to recognize key residues that predict the pandemic potential of isolate, which will inform the development, production and distribution of effective countermeasures.
Lack of transmission of H5N1 avian–human reassortant influenza viruses in a ferret model
It is suggested that H5N1 viruses may require further adaptation to acquire this essential pandemic trait, and the complexity of the genetic basis of influenza virus transmissibility is highlighted.
Increased Pathogenicity of a Reassortant 2009 Pandemic H1N1 Influenza Virus Containing an H5N1 Hemagglutinin
Reassortment between cocirculating human pH1N1 and avian H5N1 influenza strains will result in a virus with the potential for increased pathogenicity in mammals, suggesting that these viruses easily adapt to humans and become more virulent.