Method helps develop vaccines for H3N2 mutations

Influenza A is famous for the great flu epidemics, which kill thousands of people.

In order to prevent this flu , several scientists seek to develop a vaccine that projects the organism.

Methods carried out each year analyzed virus mutations based on red blood cell connections. Which, in general, worked well for the different viral subtypes. But not all.

H3N2 does not make that connection, so it was not possible to report many mutations and produce compatible vaccines.

A new laboratory method, called HINT, analyzes the 422 types of viruses, seeking to identify which are the mutations that viruses use to strengthen themselves and escape from drugs and human immunity.

The process helps in the improvement and production of vaccines and uses, as a sample, people who are infected by the flu virus. This allows for a more truthful analysis, since it is possible to study how the microorganism acts in the body.

The research was published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Read more: ANVISA approves new flu vaccines for 2019 campaign

Influenza A (H3N2)

H3N2 is a subtype of influenza viruses. It is more common among birds and pigs, but can be passed on to humans who have contact with infected animals or people.

Infection with this type of virus can be treated and cured, but if it is not diagnosed quickly it can lead to death.

Headaches, body and muscle aches, high fever , tiredness , cough and runny nose are symptoms of influenza A.

The flu vaccine distributed by the Unified Health System (SUS) to groups at risk also acts against H3N2 (in addition to combating H1N1 and influenza B).

Pregnant women, the elderly over 60 and children between 6 months and 5 years old, can look for a basic health unit to get the vaccine when the vaccination campaign begins.

The H3N2 virus variant of influenza A can be prevented with simple measures: cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing, wash your hands frequently. But these attitudes can be combined with the vaccine, enhancing prevention.