A new challenge study for the virus Influenza A/H3N2 was conducted by the investigators, but it failed to meet its expectations. Some investigators say that it can still be helpful in finding new and better influenza-vaccines.
To individualize a virus called Influenza A/Bethesda/MM1/H3N2 – the investigators from the national institute of health thought of inserting the virus in increasing doses to 37 individuals who volunteered for this challenge study. During this they were always closely monitored.
A staff clinician in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Ms. Han told that in the study of the national history – the patient first notices the symptoms of the disease and then they are diagnosed by the doctor. In this way the investigators cannot include the patient in their study. She says: “By then, we have missed the ability to study the beginning part of the illness that may include the initial symptoms, initial shedding, and initial immune response”.
Whereas, through this new study method – the patients are given the virus through their nasal paths and then they are monitored at the NIH clinical centre for about 9 days. From those 37 patients: 12 patients were diagnosed mild to moderate influenza disease, 16 experienced viral shedding, and 27 developed the virus symptoms. The viral shedding occurred during the first two days and on the third day the symptoms started to show.
Han told that the results were less than the MMID rates which were achieved through a previous challenge study using an H1N1 challenge virus. Although the results didn’t meet their expectations, Han told us that the researchers can still use it in the flu-vaccination studies by doing a better calculation of the study population and the results. Furthermore, they will also find out the reasons why this challenge study did not work out.
This will help them in a long-term perspective as their knowledge of the influenza virus will improve by a great deal.
According to a study which was published in Clinical Infectious Disorders; the study shows that Oseltamivir should be inserted into the patients who are critically ill and are suffering from the influenza virus including the virus A/H3N2 – which is spreading around now a days. This study shows that Oseltamivir is very effective against this virus but doesn’t remove all its aspects.
In this study 1330 patients were treated for influenza in the hospital’s ICU. In which patients that were > 18 years old were only given Oseltamivir and mechanical ventilation. Out of the 1330 participants that were in the ICU – 622 died during the treatment, patients that had influenza A/H3N2 had lower rates of death when given early treatment with Oseltamivir. Individuals which were given early Oseltamivir had lower death rates then those that were given late treatment. They also had a shorter ICU stay (12 to 15 days) compared to others.
Influenza type B and A/H1N1 did not determine a relationship between Oseltamivir and its effects.
From this study the investigators concluded that they had lack of information of Oseltamivir’s treatment, dosage, outcomes and the study analysis. They also concluded that “In the absence of randomized trials, our study provides strong and important new evidence about oseltamivir use in critically ill influenza patients. It also changes current thinking, by indicating that oseltamivir effectiveness may depend on influenza type”, “Our findings support the recommended practice of promptly treating with oseltamivir (in) severely ill patients with suspected influenza, particularly when subtype A/H3N2 is in circulation”.
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