Secrets of the Dead
Aired Tuesday, 12/15 at 9:00 p.m. on CPTV
In 1918, an influenza pandemic ripped through the global population with such speed and virulence it killed up to 50 million people from nearly every corner of the earth. The international medical community was powerless to stop the contagion from spreading. Hospitals ran out of beds. Morgues spilled out onto the streets. And corpses were stacked on sidewalks like cordwood. Today, with eerie echoes of the 1918 flu, health experts and political leaders around the world are working feverishly to prepare for a global epidemic they believe might stem from a lethal flu strain called H1N1, a previously unknown flu strain, that's a variant of pig, avian and human viruses. The deadly swine flu has now registered more than 1,000 cases in move than 20 countries from Mexico to New Zealand, including America. The World Health Organization has raised the pandemic level to five, the second-highest level for pandemics.
"These viruses can move around and adapt to new species as hosts," says American molecular pathologist Jeffery Taubenberger in Secrets of the Dead "Killer Flu." If we can use the 1918 virus as a model to understand this process, we can use that information to prevent something like this from ever happening again." Actor Liev Schrieber (X-Men Origins: Wolverine) narrates. Learn more...