H1N1 immunity—without the shot - Macleans.ca

H1N1 immunity—without the shot

Exposure to seasonal flus may help fight the pandemic virus


Scientists at the La Jolla Institute Center for Infectious Disease in California have found that previous seasonal flus may have primed our bodies to combat H1N1. This may explain why the pandemic flu hasn’t been as deadly as health authorities originally anticipated. The researchers discovered that some of the cells responsible for attacking the flu virus in our bloodstream recognize H1N1 because they’ve been exposed to other influenzas. The cells then create antibodies to fight the virus before we become sick. But the scientists aren’t sure how immune to the pandemic flu this makes us, so they are still encouraging people to get vaccinated against H1N1.

Healthy Day

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