Medicine: War Against Swine Flu

When several hundred soldiers were stricken with influenza at Fort Dix, N.J., in February, doctors at first were not greatly alarmed. The recruits appeared to be suffering only from the A/Victoria influenza virus, a strain that caused last winter's relatively mild flu epidemic. But tests showed that at least a dozen of the soldiers—including an 18-year-old who died of flu-related pneumonia—had been infected with a new and more worrisome viral strain. Medical experts are concerned that the virus, usually seen only in swine, may be similar to the lethal virus that probably caused some 20 million deaths—including 548,000 in the U.S.—during...