What is H5N1?

H5N1 is a subtype of influenza A virus that is known primarily for infecting birds, but can cross species barriers to infect various organisms, including humans.The term "H5N1" comes from two types of proteins on the surface of the virus: hemagglutinin (H) and neuraminidase (N). Influenza viruses are classified based on these proteins, and H5N1 is one of many potential subtypes.The H5N1 virus rose to prominence in 1997, when it first caused a deadlybird flu epidemic among humans in Hong Kong. Since then, the virus has become the subject of intensive research and monitoring due to its ability to cause serious epidemics in birds and its potential threat to public health.H5N1 is particularly dangerous because migratory birds can carry the virus over long distances, making it difficult to control. In addition, H5N1 has the ability to mutate and adapt, meaning it can evolve to jump to humans more easily and potentially cause a pandemic.Scientists around the world are working to monitor H5N1 and create effective vaccines and therapies against it. In the meantime, education and awareness are key tools in the fight against this dangerous virus.