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influenza virus strain

Assessing the flu vaccine

Late in 2014, we got news that the most prevalent circulating influenza virus strain this season, H3N2 (A/Switzerland/9715293/2013), was antigenically different from the H3N2 strain that was used to produce this year’s flu vaccine. Depending on the source from which one first heard this news, the sentiments ranged from the cynical — “the vaccine is