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Swine Flu Variation Emerges With Power to Resist Drug Treatment

A novel form of the swine flu virus that swept the globe in 2009 has emerged in Australia and Singapore, carrying a genetic twist that helps it resist Roche Holding AG’s Tamiflu and GlaxoSmithKline Plc’s Relenza, researchers said.

More than 10 percent of the infections in Singapore and 30 percent of those in northern Australia tested in early 2011 had mildly reduced sensitivity to the two drugs that are the mainstay of influenza treatment, according to a report today from the World Health Organization’s influenza research group in North Melbourne, Australia. BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s experimental flu drug peramivir remained an effective treatment against the virus in laboratory tests, the researchers said.