Friday, December 21, 2012

Scientists discover multiple avian influenza strains in Chinese Pigs

Scientists recently reported on the seroprevalence of strains of avian influenza viruses found in pigs kept in southern China.

The analyzed viruses do not include the H5N1 strain. The researchers believe their study could have major public health implications in efforts to limit the potential damage caused by a pandemic in humans, according to

Swine can be infected by both human and avian influenza viruses, and are therefore believed to be important sources of the kind of genetic reassortment that can result in a pandemic. Pigs have been infected by all of the avian influenza subtypes, H1-H13, but the natural transmission of avian influenza into pigs has only been observed in rare instances.

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