Pandemic influenza: its origin and control

Microbes Infect. 2002 Nov;4(13):1309-16. doi: 10.1016/s1286-4579(02)00013-8.


A "new" influenza virus will appear at some time in the future. This virus will arise by natural processes, which we do not fully understand, or it might be created by some bioterrorist. The world's population will have no immunity to the new virus, which will spread like wild-fire, causing much misery, economic disruption and many deaths. Vaccines will take time to develop and the only means of control, at least in the early stages of the epidemic, are anti-viral drugs, of which the neuraminidase inhibitors currently seem the most effective.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use
  • Birds
  • Chickens
  • China / epidemiology
  • Disease Outbreaks / prevention & control*
  • Drug Resistance, Viral
  • Humans
  • Influenza A virus / classification
  • Influenza A virus / physiology
  • Influenza, Human / drug therapy
  • Influenza, Human / epidemiology*
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control*
  • Influenza, Human / virology
  • Models, Molecular
  • Neuraminidase / physiology
  • Orthomyxoviridae / genetics
  • Orthomyxoviridae / immunology


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Neuraminidase