Discovery to show swine flu-type pandemics

How they are doing it will be the focus of ‘Anatomy of a Pandemic’, a special programme on Discovery Channel this weekend that will take a look at what a future pandemic might look like and how the human race can better prepare itself to face such an outbreak.

The programme, channel officials said, would explain to the common viewer the World Health Organisation’s phases of pandemic alert, how viruses reproduce and spread, and how information technology and data-mining software have resulted in their early detection.
The programme, to be aired on Saturday evening and repeated on Sunday afternoon, will show how over the last few decades, the extent of air travel and open borders have created enormous opportunities for viruses to spread.

The show brings in interesting information on how companies like Veratect and Google possess software that they claim can spot outbreaks well ahead of the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and the WHO. It also takes a look at the developments in technology, research, and medicine. “The programme tells the story of one of the biggest threats to humankind and the fight against it. Understanding a pandemic would mean understanding both the virus behaviour and human behaviour,” Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific senior vice-president Rahul Johri said.

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