CDC LOWERS ESTIMATE OF BIRD FLU PANDEMIC
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has decided that the likelihood of an avian influenza pandemic is less than previously thought.
CDC scientists reached the conclusion after conducting a simulation of one of the two main ways the H5N1 virus might follow in adapting to humans. In that simulation the virus did not create a lethal version that could infect humans. But scientists cautioned a pandemic might still occur if the avian flu virus evolves in a different manner.
The experiment involved mixing the bird flu virus with a common human influenza virus. In an alternative transformation, the H5N1 virus might genetically mutate on its own, as it's believed an avian flu virus did to cause the 1918 pandemic.