"Warnings have been issued that the avian influenza virus presently killing animals and people in Asia may become the new strain of pandemic flu which could potentially kill millions of people. These warnings have sparked renewed interest in ways to treat or prevent influenza. Clinical observations from thousands of influenza patients in Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, China, and Japan claim significant clinical benefits to patients intranasally given low-dose (a few hundred to 10,000 units) interferon during natural outbreaks of influenza. In contrast, in experimental influenza virus challenge studies with human volunteers, those volunteers given 800,000 to 70 million units of interferon by intranasal delivery did not experience a clinical benefit. Data generated using low dose interferon was rejected by Western scientists because of the impure nature of the interferon used in early studies and because the low dose interferon did not seem to make any sense. This review proposes that the subject of low dose interferon for influenza be revisited. Intranasal and oral administration of low-dose interferon deliver interferon to the same receptors in the oral-pharyngeal cavity. Low-dose oral interferon may represent an inexpensive, safe way to modulate the immune system during, or before, influenza infection."