Swine flu goes deeper in lungs than flu

Swine flu can infect cells deeper in the lungs than seasonal flu resulting in more severe lung infection, research suggests.

The researchers, from Imperial College London, say that the findings could explain why people infected with swine flu in the current pandemic suffer more severe symptoms than those infected with seasonal flu.

For the study, the researchers compared the way seasonal and pandemic flu viruses infect cells by identify which receptors each virus binds to.

Lead researcher Professor Ten Feizi said: ‘Receptor binding determines how well a virus spreads between cells and causes an infection.

‘Our new study adds to our understanding of how swine-origin influenza H1N1 virus is behaving in the current pandemic and shows us changes we need to look out for.'




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