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GSF: Thoughts on the practicality of such a thing, and its impact within the context of a potential avian flu or other lethal flu outbreak/mutation?

Sorry to have delayed so long in replying.

A "universal" vaccine for influenza that will work on all strains has been the Holy Grail of immunology for many decades now. The practical difficulties are enormous. The flu virus is wickedly clever at altering its protein shell by rotating randomly and rapidly through a group of mutations that alter the shapes of the protrusions from the shell, and hence confusing all normal immune systems. Research groups have claimed to have a solution before, only to suffer the ignominy of being forced to retract in public.

That isn't to say it absolutely cannot be done, but I remain skeptical.

Nanoviricides offer the only alternative that I know of. A viricide is not a vaccine at all. A vaccine teaches the immune system how to recognize a virus particle, so that white blood cells can go to work destroying the particles. A viricide actually kills the virus particle, usually by penetrating its shell and spilling out the DNA or RNA contents, leading to its rapid decomposition. Nanoviricides are artificially-created nanoscopic spheroids, created in a factory. Here are two links to the technology currently in development and testing:

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