News of the WeekSwine Flu Outbreak

New Details on Virus's Promiscuous Past

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Science  29 May 2009:
Vol. 324, Issue 5931, pp. 1127
DOI: 10.1126/science.324_1127

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An international team of scientists working at breakneck speed has provided the most detailed description yet of the origins of the novel H1N1 swine flu virus now causing a global outbreak. The study, published online by Science on 22 May, has good news about the prospects for making a vaccine against the virus. It also raises the intriguing possibility that a species other than pigs might have harbored a precursor to the virus.