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NIH Paying Volunteers to Catch the Flu

Updated: Monday, February 10 2014, 05:07 PM EST

It is the time of the year where everyone struggles to avoid flu season, but some Marylanders are willing to catch the flu for a price. The National Institute of Health is paying $3,000 to volunteers for research purposes.  

Volunteers would be infected with a mild to moderate strain of H1N1 flu virus and then quarantined on the NIH campus for at least nine days. FOX45 spoke with some who are willing to sign up. 

ÔÇťAbsolutely, Ihave a price for everything," one volunteer said. "And $3,000 dollars sounds very fair for that."

Doctors at NIH say it is the only clear way of studying the flu. 

"In this setting, we know exactly when they were exposed, how long they've been sick, when they became infectious, how infectious they are," NIH Dr. Matthew Memoli said. "We can monitor every part of the immune system response so we can learn what we need to learn in order to improve the vaccines."

The first group of 24 volunteers has already shown that most people have the flu days before any symptoms occur. On average the flu lasts about five to six-days.

NIH researchers are searching for both male and female volunteers between the ages of 18 and 50-years old.

NIH Paying Volunteers to Catch the Flu


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