From the November 2002 Idaho Observer:
Science Made Simple: Make your own flu vaccine
The following is a satire. However, it's poking fun at how the flu vaccine is really made. According to the February 26, 1999 broadcast of the CDC's Preparing for the Next Influenza Pandemic, the experts first order several million chicken eggs, then take a guess as to which three of several influenza strains circulating in Asia will end up in North America the following winter. Those viruses are then injected into the skin of sheep and goats. Once the pus blisters ripen, the experts suck the pus into syringes and then inject it into the chicken eggs. After several days, the pus/egg mixture is extracted, spun in a centrifuge and mixed with a bizarre cocktail of toxic adjuvants and preservatives and put into little glass or plastic vials. Then different experts who have no idea of what we just discussed (we call them doctors and nurses) hypodermically inject this medieval concoction (vaccine) into their trusting patients in the hopes that it will somehow protect them against the flu.
by Kent Fukuzura
It's flu season again, and that means you and probably everyone you know has the fever, headache and sore throat associated with these rapidly evolving forms of influenza. This week, using only a few dishes in mother's kitchen, we will create an influenza shot custom-tailored to the variety that you are carrying.
The Science Of Influenza: There are three basic types of influenza, A, B and C. The C-type is so mild professional scientists don't bother with it, and so neither will we. Flu shots are created from the current crop of A and B viruses sweeping the globe. Because the genetic makeup of the viruses can shift quickly the virus in your neighbourhood may be different than the virus the pharmaceutical companies used to create their vaccine. Our homemade vaccine will fight the virus in your neighbourhood that is attacking you and your friends and family.
Stuff You'll Need: You'll need to find someone already suffering from the flu to obtain samples. You'll also need a few dishes and cups from the kitchen, a microscope, and syringes.
How It Works: Get your virus sample to cough up some specimens into a plate or bowl. The more the better. Stay well out of range or you may end up carrying the virus yourself! Wear rubber gloves and inject the material into several raw eggs for the virus to incubate. Keep the eggs warm, but off the stove. If you have a heat lamp in the bathroom you can put them there.
After 12 or 13 days open the eggs and mix the material together in a glass jar. Use father's lathe as a centrifuge to separate the egg material from the virus. Count on about five CCs per person. You'll want to make sure the virus is dead before you inject it in anyone, so deactivate it by removing the neuraminidase or hemagglutinin protein from your sample.
Make a saline solution out of salt and water and mix your virus into it. Label your solution clearly and keep in the fridge so it doesn't go bad.
Next, you'll need to get syringes. Needle exchange programs will often give you a few for free, so take advantage of their largess! Test your vaccine before using it on yourself or someone important to you. Sometimes there can be adverse reactions to the flu vaccine, so if your test subject gets really sick, don't despair. Do a test on another subject.
Once you're happy with the results you can inject yourself and your friends and family with our own homemade, and custom-tailored vaccine, fighting the version of the flu that's in your neighbourhood. Mother will be so proud!
DISCLAIMER: Kent's column is intended for amusement purposes only. Never play with used syringes, and always make sure your friends have medical insurance.
CANADA'S SOURCE FOR HUMOUR AND SATIRE