Some of the peculiarities of strains of influenza A and B virus from two epidemics have been described. The influenza B virus of 1945–46, when compared with influenza A virus, proved to be much more difficult to isolate from human sources by any known means. Its adaptation to the chick embryo (by any route) or to mice was much slower than that of A virus. It did not keep nearly as well on storage at –72°C. either in throat garglings or as passage material. Its adaptation to amniotic growth was usually much better than to allantoic growth even after repeated allantoic passages. It failed to show primary evidence of occurring in the O form, although many of the secondary O characteristics were present and persisted. Its titer in throat washings was not demonstrably high as compared with certain strains of A virus, which were demonstrated in garglings at dilutions of 10–5 and 10–6.

The antigenic patterns of influenza A strains from two epidemics were compared. No antigenic differences of significant degree were found among the strains of either epidemic and the difference between the strains of the two epidemics was very slight. A similar study was made of the influenza B strains of the epidemic of 1945–46. This also showed complete lack of significant strain differences. The implications of these findings for influenza prophylaxis are discussed.

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