There currently is no commercially available flu vaccine to protect humans against H5N1 that is being seen in Asia and Europe. However, vaccine development efforts are taking place. Research studies to test a vaccine to protect humans against the H5N1 virus began in April 2005, and a series of clinical trials is under way.
The H5N1 virus that has caused human illness and death in Asia is resistant to amantadine and rimantadine, two antiviral drugs commonly used for influenza treatment. Two other antiviral medications, oseltamivir and zanamivir, may work for treatment of influenza caused by H5N1, but additional studies still need to be done to demonstrate their effectiveness.