Second line drug still not available for H1N1


 On asked if the second line of drug (Relenza) was available in the City, Joint Direct (Communicable Diseases) Dr Cheluvaraj said that there were no patients in the City who have developed resistance to Tamiflu, “If any cases are found, then we will request the Ministry of Health to supply the second line of drugs”, he said.

However,  Health and Family Services Director Dr Usha Vasunkar said that supply of tablets must come from the Centre.

"Ideally, World Health Organisation (WHO) will provide us with the second line of drugs shortly irrespective of whether we have a patient or not", said Dr Vasunkar.

A patient who arrived from US in the third week of June was tested positive for H1N1 flu along with his wife in Chennai. The wife recovered whereas this patient's subsequent samples of throat swabs tested positive.

Commenting on the condition of the patient in Chennai, former UNICEF Programme Officer Dr M Seenappa said that this could be a clear case of mutation of H1N1 virus, “It is important to test the genetic sequencing of the virus to check if the virus has mutated”, said Dr Seenappa .

Second line of drug

After blood test at NIV, Pune,  the patient was recommended with the second line of the antiviral drug.  Speaking to Deccan Herald from Chennai, Director of Public Health S Elango  said that the patient had tested positive on subsequent swab tests, “We have only increased his  dosage of Tamiflu. We have not given second line of drugs to him.”

Vaccines

The vaccine for H1N1 flu ‘Pan Bloc’ manufactured by US-based Protein Science Corporation is likely to undergo clinical trials by Sept or Oct, however Australia has already started the trails from July 22.

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