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Genetic Link to Swine Flu Vaccine Narcolepsy

Genetic factors may be part of the reason behind a spike in narcolepsy cases observed among children who received the swine flu vaccine Pandemrix. A World Health Organization (WHO) expert panel says that all 22 narcolepsy patients tested had a gene commonly associated with narcolepsy.

At least 12 countries have now informed Pandemrix's manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, of narcolepsy cases following vaccination. Narcolepsy is a disorder that causes people to suddenly fall asleep.

According to the Boston Herald:

"Last week, Finnish authorities said they had found a nine-fold increased risk of narcolepsy among 4- to 19-year-olds who were given the swine flu shots. In total, 60 children and adolescents contracted narcolepsy in Finland in 2009 and 2010. Fifty-two of them -- or almost 90 percent -- had received the Pandemrix vaccine. Lesser increases were also observed in Sweden and Iceland, WHO said."

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