I've long been fascinated with the 1918 influenza pandemic because my grandfather Sam survived it. He married his nurse, lived 103 years, and likely had lifelong B cells that held the memory of his encounter with the flu. I wrote "A 1918 Flu Memoir" about him in 2008 for The American Journal of Bioethics.
We know very little about the 1918 pandemic flu, other than what it did to millions. The virus wasn't even identified until 1933. Compare that to the deluge of SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences posted daily, nearly 11 million as I write this.
What we do know about the 1918 flu comes from bits of lung tissue from museum specimens or preserved in permafrost.
To continue reading, go to DNA Science, where this post first appeared.