Scientist Recreates Spanish Flu Virus

    circa 1918:  Doctors giving treatment to an influenza patient at the US Naval Hospital in New Orleans.  (Photo by MPI/Getty Images)


    Despite warnings from scientists around the globe that such an attempt could be dangerous, an international team of scientists announced Wednesday that they had created a virus that is only 3 percent different from the 1918 Spanish flu. That virus, which still mystifies global health experts, is believed to have killed more people than the Black Death and is described by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as “the mother of all pandemics.” The team was led by Yoshihiro Kawaoka, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin at Madison who studies the influenza virus and Ebola. His team used reverse genetics from extant bird flu genes to create a single new virus. The recreated virus, according to the study, “may have pandemic potential.” Oh, great.

    Read it at The Washington Post