Influenza Pandemic (1918)
How to build a better flu vaccine
How to build a better flu vaccine

The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-19 killed 583,135 Americans, according to public health authorities at the time. Although we no longer suffer such a high rate of flu deaths, during a non-pandemic season, flu still kills on average thousands each year in this country. From the 1976-77 season to the 2006-07 season, flu-associated deaths ranged from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000, according to the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vaccination is the key to prevention. According to recent estimates from the CDC, in six influenza seasons, starting in 2005-06, flu vaccination against a variety of strains prevented 13.59 million cases (and as a result, 5.8...