Oseltamivir-resistant flu virus reported in Australia

According to a letter to the editor published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a variation of the pandemic H1N1 influenza virus that is resistant to oseltamivir appears to be spreading in Australia.
The report is compounded by the recent analysis by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that shows an increase in the same oseltamivir-resistant influenza strain in the United States. If the resistance becomes widespread, it would deprive clinicians of the effective Tamiflu antiviral drug that is used to treat serious influenza infections, Medscape reports.
In the Australian study, 29 of 182 patients infected with the pandemic flu virus between May and August had a version of the virus that was oseltamivir-resistant.

The study was led by Aeron Hurt, a researcher at the World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Reference and Research on Influenza in Melbourne, Australia. The 189 patients were from the New England-Hunter region of New South Wales. Of the 29 patients with the resistant virus, only one had previously received the antiviral medicine before a sample was collected.
The virus strains of the 29 patients were closely related, which suggests that a single variant was spreading. While the virus was resistant to oseltamivir, it was still susceptible to the antiviral medication zanamivir, also known as Relenza.