Swine Flu: An Old Virus with a New Face

Wail A. Hayajneh, Azmi M. Mahafzah


This review is describing the current world status of the recently identified swine origin influenza virus
A (H1N1) outbreak with special focus on Jordan. This recent outbreak originated in Mexico and spread
to more than 40 countries including USA and has been caused by a novel swine origin influenza virus
A(H1N1). This virus is thought to be a result of a genetic reassortment process that took place in pigs.
This disease affects mostly young people with symptoms that are similar to those of seasonal influenza.
Sustained human-to-human transmission has been documented and the virus is so far resistant to both
amantadine and rimantadine but susceptible to oseltamivir and zanamivir. The World Health
Organization (WHO) has raised the level of influenza pandemic to phase 5 and future speculations seem
to be uncertain. Laboratory diagnosis is confirmed using a swine virus real-time, reverse transcriptase
PCR test. No cases have been confirmed in Jordan. Nevertheless, Jordanian health authorities have
started a very serious cascade of actions based on a comprehensive preparedness plan and supported by
the already available infrastructure, increasing stockpiles of medications and protective equipments, and
strengthening infection control preparedness of health care facilities.


Swine flu, influenza, oseltamivir, zanamivir, pigs.

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