Scientists Warn of Potential Flu Virus Pandemic

The flu virus can become a pandemic

The flu virus can become a pandemic

Leading scientists are sounding the alarm on the likelihood of the next global pandemic being triggered by the influenza virus, according to an upcoming international survey. Conducted by Jon Salmanton-García from Cologne University, the survey reveals that 57% of senior disease experts view influenza as the most probable cause of the next deadly infectious outbreak.

The concern surrounding influenza stems from its constant evolution and mutation, making it a perennial threat. While current outbreaks are relatively controlled due to less virulent strains, experts warn that this may not remain the case indefinitely.

The survey, comprising inputs from 187 senior scientists, will be presented at the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) congress in Barcelona. Apart from influenza, 21% of respondents highlighted the potential of an unknown virus, referred to as Disease X, to spark the next pandemic. This hypothetical microorganism could emerge unexpectedly, similar to the Sars-CoV-2 virus responsible for Covid-19.

Despite the ongoing battle against Covid-19, 15% of scientists still view Sars-CoV-2 as a significant pandemic threat. However, other deadly pathogens like Lassa, Nipah, Ebola, and Zika viruses are deemed lesser global concerns, with only 1% to 2% of respondents expressing alarm.

Recent reports from the World Health Organization (WHO) have raised concerns over the spread of the H5N1 strain of influenza, causing widespread avian flu cases globally since 2020. The virus's transmission to mammal species, including domestic cattle in the US, has heightened fears of potential human risks.

Daniel Goldhill from the Royal Veterinary College emphasizes that as the virus infects more mammalian species, the likelihood of evolving into a dangerous human strain increases. The appearance of H5N1 in cattle, previously unaffected by avian flu, underscores the unpredictable nature of viral evolution.

while efforts are underway to combat current infectious threats, vigilance against potential future pandemics, particularly from influenza, remains paramount. The findings underscore the importance of ongoing research and preparedness to mitigate the impact of emerging infectious diseases on a global scale.


পাঠকের মন্তব্য