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Bull World Health Organ. 1988;66(1):57-63.

Influenza surveillance in Singapore: 1972-86.


Prospective laboratory surveillance of influenza viruses has been carried out since 1973 in Singapore. The results indicate that antigenic shift variants caused epidemics at various times of the year over this period, whereas drift variants were associated with a regular increase in incidence during the second and fourth calendar quarters. Outbreaks due to influenza A virus occurred every year and to influenza B virus at intervals of 16-24 months. Between outbreaks, viruses belonging to either of the two types could be detected during most months, and certain variants appeared several months before the outbreaks they subsequently caused. The factors that contribute to the seasonal pattern are at present unknown.

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