January 27

Research project pays volunteers to get the flu

To avoid spreading the germs, participants must spend at least nine days quarantined inside a special isolation ward.

By Lauran Neergaard
The Associated Press

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

Daniel Bennett, 26, of College Park, Md., has live flu virus sprayed into his nose as part of a study at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md.

The Associated Press

click image to enlarge

Daniel Bennett, who is taking part in research for a better flu vaccine, sits in isolation as he remains quarantined after having live flu virus sprayed into his nose at the National Institute of Health in Bethesda, Md. Bennett’s flu was pretty mild, and he was able to pass the time studying, watching TV and playing games with the four other study participants infected this month.

The Associated Press

Now he’s infecting two groups — people with low antibody levels and those with high levels. Some were recently vaccinated, and some weren’t. He’ll compare how sick they get, how long they’re contagious and how the immune system jumps into action.

Called a human challenge study, this kind of research hasn’t been performed with flu viruses in the U.S. for more than a decade, before scientists had ways as sophisticated to measure what happens.

“It’s all going to add up to a better understanding of what you need to have to be protected against the flu,” said Dr. John Treanor, a flu specialist at the University of Rochester Medical Center who is closely watching the work.

So far, Memoli’s patients are becoming contagious a day or two before they start feeling bad, one reason the flu spreads so easily. He sees a range of symptoms, from sniffles to a few days of moderate fever, fatigue and congestion.

Bennett’s flu was pretty mild, and he passed the time studying, watching TV and playing games with the four other study participants infected this month.

“All I had to do was read and watch movies, so it wasn’t that terrible,” Bennett said. “It was a really cool experience” to see how research is done.

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at OnlineSentinel.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)