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Study Shows Why the Flu Likes Winter

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Filed: Country: Philippines
Timeline

By GINA KOLATA, NYT

Researchers in New York believe they have solved one of the great mysteries of the flu: Why does the infection spread primarily in the winter months?

The answer, they say, has to do with the virus itself. It is more stable and stays in the air longer when air is cold and dry, the exact conditions for much of the flu season.

“Influenza virus is more likely to be transmitted during winter on the way to the subway than in a warm room,” said Peter Palese, a flu researcher who is professor and chairman of the microbiology department at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and the lead author of the flu study.

Dr. Palese published details of his findings in the Oct. 19 issue of PLoS Pathogens. The crucial hint that allowed him to do his study came from a paper published in the aftermath of the 1918 flu pandemic, when doctors were puzzling over why and how the virus had spread so quickly and been so deadly.

As long as flu has been recognized, people have asked, Why winter? The very name, “influenza,” is an Italian word that some historians proposed, originated in the mid-18th century as influenza di freddo, or “influence of the cold.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/05/health/r...no_interstitial

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Filed: Timeline
I wonder what that study cost :blink:

Ahahaha I wonder too.

I thought there is a solution against the virus. I just remember my younger brother (5 years old) telling his friend that she will get flu cause it's cold outside!

“It was a really interesting paper, the first really scientific approach, to answer a classic question that we’ve been debating for years and years,” he said.

I wonder what are the aspects they are debating for?! :wacko::blink:

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