Rob Stein
Washington Post
November 20, 2009

Scientists in Norway have identified a mutated form of the swine flu virus that is raising concern because it was found in two patients who died of the flu and a third who was severely ill with the disease, officials announced Friday.

In a statement, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health said the mutation “could possibly make the virus more prone to infect deeper in the airways and thus cause more severe disease,” such as pneumonia.

Scientists have analyzed about 70 viruses from confirmed Norwegian swine flu cases and found the mutation in only those three patients, Geir Stene-Larsen, the institute’s director general, said in the statement.

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