January 12, 2006

The evolution of "birdflu"

Two headlines from today's Reuters wire...

"Gene tests show birdflu virus is evolving"

"Birdflu spreads, World Bank approves funds"

Is bird flu mutating into birdflu right before our eyes?

(For now the mutation may be limited to isolated cases, such as the Reuters headline writers who have been trying it out since at least July. But look for the compact single-word form to catch on as the virus — or at least hysteria about the virus — continues to spread.)

Posted by Benjamin Zimmer at January 12, 2006 11:34 PM