Oseltamivir-Resistant Influenza Virus A (H1N1), Europe, 2007–08 Season

EID Journal Home > Volume 15, Number 4–April 2009

Adam Meijer, Comments to Author Angie Lackenby, Olav Hungnes, Bruno Lina, Sylvie van der Werf, Brunhilde Schweiger, Matthias Opp, John Paget, Jan van de Kassteele, Alan Hay, and Maria Zambon, on behalf of the European Influenza Surveillance Scheme1

In Europe, the 2007–08 winter season was dominated by influenza virus A (H1N1) circulation through week 7, followed by influenza B virus from week 8 onward. Oseltamivir-resistant influenza viruses A (H1N1) (ORVs) with H275Y mutation in the neuraminidase emerged independently of drug use. By country, the proportion of ORVs ranged from 0% to 68%, with the highest proportion in Norway. The average weighted prevalence of ORVs across Europe increased gradually over time, from near 0 in week 40 of 2007 to 56% in week 19 of 2008 (mean 20%). Neuraminidase genes of ORVs possessing the H275Y substitution formed a homogeneous subgroup closely related to, but distinguishable from, those of oseltamivir-sensitive influenza viruses A (H1N1). Minor variants of ORVs emerged independently, indicating multiclonal ORVs. Overall, the clinical effect of ORVs in Europe, measured by influenza-like illness or acute respiratory infection, was unremarkable and consistent with normal seasonal activity.

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