Sweetgum Trees Can Help with Bird Flu Vaccines - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

4/2/06

Sweetgum Trees Can Help with Bird Flu Vaccines

Trees that drop gumballs all over your yard could help prevent the spread of the Bird Flu. A new study finds the gumballs from the Sweetgum Tree contain a certain acid chemical used to make the antiviral drug TamiFlu.

Researchers believe TamiFlu can help to stop the replication of the flu virus. The acid is found mainly in a fruit from southern Asia, but researchers believe that finding a new source, like the gumballs from the sweetgum tree, could help the supply in the production of TamiFlu. That could be used if or when it is needed in large quantities.

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