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David White
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David White is a software/firmware/marketing professional and a long time investor. He has worked in the networking field, the semiconductor equipment field, the mainframe computer field, and the pharmaceutical/scientific instrumentation field. He has bachelor's degrees in bioresource sciences... More
  • Is Swine Flu Now A Pandemic?? 0 comments
    Jun 10, 2009 3:25 PM | about stocks: HEB, APT, SRPT, BCRX, CRXL, DVAX, GILD, GNBT, GSK, NVAX, PURE, QDEL, SNY, SVA, VICL


    The W.H.O. (the National Pandemic Emergency Committee of W.H.O.) is supposedly holding a meeting tomorrow (Thursday June 11) to determine whether the H1N1 virus (swine flu) now constitutes a pandemic. The current designation is 5 on a scale that tops out at 6. The W.H.O. guidelines are as follows:
    Phase 5 is characterized by human-to-human spread of the virus into at least two countries in one WHO region. While most countries will not be affected at this stage, the declaration of Phase 5 is a strong signal that a pandemic is imminent and that the time to finalize the organization, communication, and implementation of the planned mitigation measures is short.

    Phase 6, the pandemic phase, is characterized by community level outbreaks in at least one other country in a different WHO region in addition to the criteria defined in Phase 5. Designation of this phase will indicate that a global pandemic is under way.
    The largest numbers of cases were originally in mostly one region – North America. This is still the case. The latest W.H.O. report shows the following figures for reported cases:
    Canada   2,446
    U.S.   ... 13,217
    Mexico  &nbs... 5,717
    However, this latest report also shows significant numbers in at least two other regions. Chile has reported 1,694 cases. Australia has reported 1,224 cases. There are significant numbers in other countries as well: U.K. (666), Japan (485), Spain (331), etc. This virus does not look like it is going away soon. The numbers in the US and Mexico have been growing less quickly of late though. Still you would expect that countries like Chile and Australia would be in much more danger of significant pandemics because the southern hemisphere countries are entering their winter season. These two countries by themselves may be enough to qualify the Swine Flu as a Pandemic (category 6). When you add in the North American countries, the pandemic designation seems almost unavoidable. Of particular significance is the currently rapid spread of the disease in Chile, which has had 1283 new cases reported since the last reporting date.
    Fortunately this disease does not seem to be much of a killer – yet. However, it could significantly impact economies as various countries are afflicted with it. It did virtually shut down Mexico, especially Mexico City, for a week.
    From an investing point of view, the stocks in the Swine Flu Index may be good bets to benefit from this pandemic designation. They are: APT, AVII, BCRX, CRXL, DVAX, GILD, GNBT, GSK, HEB, NVAX, PURE, QDEL, RHHBY, SNY, SVA, and VICL.
    Good luck investing. I hope you all manage to avoid the swine flu.
    As an aside this likely designation change for Swine Flu (5 to 6) may positively affect the outcome of the FDA’s review of HEB’s NDA for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The ruling from the FDA is due any day now. The new drug at issue is ampligen, which also happens to have been proven to be extremely effective as an adjuvant for flu vaccine. The FDA will think twice about knocking this drug, when the world may be about to use it as a flu vaccine adjuvant. The Japanese Institute of Health has given it rave reviews as a flu adjuvant.

    I have a long position in HEB.

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