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View Diary: Where We Stand With Pandemic Preparedness, and Where We Need To Go (106 comments)

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  •  the cheaper and more readily available (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shadan7, AmericanRiverCanyon

    alternatives are statins.

    The next influenza pandemic may be imminent. Because antiviral agents and vaccines will be unavailable to people in most countries, we need to determine whether other agents could offer clinical benefits. Influenza is associated with an increase in acute cardiovascular diseases, and influenza viruses induce proinflammatory cytokines. Statins are cardioprotective and have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects, and they thus might benefit patients with influenza. This hypothesis should be evaluated by using administrative databases to search for reduced rates of hospitalization and death due to influenza-related conditions among people taking statins. These studies should be followed by laboratory studies of statins in animal and cell-based models of influenza virus infection and, later, by clinical trials. Positive results from such studies would provide physicians in all countries with something to offer patients for treatment and prophylaxis of pandemic influenza. Generic statins will be widely distributed and inexpensive. They might be the only agents that could alter the course of a global pandemic.

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Sun Jun 01, 2008 at 06:44:47 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  My guess is that statins are anti-inflammatory (0+ / 0-)

      to a degree (which helps prevent cardiac disease), but that they aren't potent enough for a systemic inflammation, like that from pandemic influenza. This inflammation involves an overwhelming total body response that lowers the blood pressure and fills the lungs with fluid. I can't imagine statins making a big difference.

      But I could be wrong.

      An eye for an eye and the whole world will be blind.

      by rini6 on Sun Jun 01, 2008 at 07:12:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  true (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fla1sun, AmericanRiverCanyon, rini6

        but the questions comes "what if you are already on them?" rather than using them in extremis.

        http://www.nature.com/...

        Immunomodulation: a new role for statins?

        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

        by Greg Dworkin on Sun Jun 01, 2008 at 07:19:18 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Still no data on infection (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DemFromCT

          The article seems to be more about auto-immune disease and transplant (two situations where you would definitely want to suppress the immune system.)

          But interesting. It's funny that statins were developed to decrease cholesterol but may work though an entirely different mechanism. Although, isn't this the way science often works? What was it that Bob Ross (that hilarious painter) said? "Happy accidents."

          An eye for an eye and the whole world will be blind.

          by rini6 on Sun Jun 01, 2008 at 07:24:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Outstanding diary! (0+ / 0-)

          Ode magazine has run a series of articles that are quite interesting.  One of those articles addresses the  1918 pandemic and the successful use of homeopathy.  Very informative....
          http://www.google.com/...
          Ode mag bird flu homeopathy - Google Search

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