Letters

By Science News, 13:05 PM June 28, 2012

Redesigning flu mortality
In “Designer flu” (SN: 6/2/12, p. 20), researcher Michael Osterholmis quoted as saying that even if the actual kill rate of H5N1 is 20 times lower than the current estimate of 59 percent, H5N1 would still have a mortality rate that “far exceeds” that of the 1918 flu. Wikipedia gives a 1918 flu infection rate estimate of 27 percent, with 3 percent of the world’s population dying. Using the 3 percent mortality rate, “20 times lower” would require an assumption that ...

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