How did the Swine flu get its name?
So how did humans end up with a flu virus that is named the swine flu? The swine flu or novel H1N1 flu is the same thing. Originally, the H1N1 virus was called the swine flu because the genetic make up of the virus was similar to a virus found in pigs of North America. According to the CDC, the virus has two genes from flu viruses found in pigs in Europe and Asia, bird flu genes as well as human flu genes.
Because the genetic composition of this virus is new, it is called a novel virus. Most people under the age of 65 do not have an immunity to the H1N1 virus and will become sick if they are not immunized. People over the age of 65 may have some immunity because of a breakout of a similar viral strain in the late 1940s.