H7N9 is a serotype of the species Influenzavirus A (avian influenza virus or bird flu virus). H7 normally circulates amongst avian populations with some variants known to occasionally infect humans. An H7N9 virus was first reported to have infected humans in 2013.
On March 31, 2013,Reported cases in 2013
On April 2, 2013,the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health of Hong Kong received notification from the National Health and Family Planning Commission (the Commission) concerning three confirmed human cases of influenza A (H7N9).
the CHP confirmed four more cases in Jiangsu province, all considered in critical condition in hospitals in Nanjing,Suzhou, and Wuxi. In a statement, the CHP said that no epidemiologic links had been found between the four patients and so far no other H7N9 infections have been identified in 167 of their close contacts.
On April 3, 2013,The first reported death associated with H7N9 was an 87 year old man who died on March 4th. A second man, later identified as Wu Liangliang, aged 27, died on March 10th.
On April 4, 2013,Chinese authorities confirm that one man has died, thus bringing the number of deaths to three.
On April 5, 2013,the number of reported cases was 14, with 5 deaths. The two victims were a 48 year old man and a 52 year old woman, both from Shanghai.
On April 6, 2013,another person, a farmer, aged 64, living in Huzhou (Zhejiang province), died, raising the death toll to 6. The Shanghai health ministry ordered culling of birds after pigeon samples collected at the Huhuai wholesale agricultural products market in Songjiang District of Shanghai showed H7N9. So far, more than 20,000 birds have been killed in a live poultry-trading area in Shanghai.
On April 6, 2013,all Shanghai live poultry markets closed temporarily in response to the H7N9 found in the pigeon samples. The same day, Hangzhou also closed its live poultry markets. After gene sequence analysis, the national avian flu reference laboratory concluded that the strain of the H7N9 virus found on pigeons was highly congenic with those found on persons infected with H7N9 virus, the ministry said.
On April 9, 2013,the Chinese Ministry of Health reported 18 positive cases, death toll still at 6. Two days later, positive cases rose to 24 and one death case from Shanghai brought the death toll to 7.
the National Health and Family Planning Commission announced "an additional three laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with influenza A(H7N9) virus." The new patients "are two patients from Jiangsu – an 85-year-old man who became ill on 28 March 2013" and a "25-year-old pregnant woman who became ill on 30 March 2013" and " a 64-year-old man from Shanghai who became ill on 1 April 2013, and died on 7 April 2013". As of April 9, 2013, a "total of 24 cases have been laboratory confirmed with influenza A (H7N9) virus in China, including seven deaths, 14 severe cases and three mild cases." In Jiangsu, more than "600 close contacts of the confirmed cases are being closely monitored."
On April 4, 2013,SymptomsAccording to World Health Organization, symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath, which progressed to severe pneumonia. WHO also notes that information is limited.Transmission
China's agricultural authorities reported that the H7N9 virus had been detected from pigeon samples collected at a marketplace in Shanghai. It should be noted that pigeons are not defined or meet the definition of poultry, which are the most likely to transmit the virus. Previously, The Guardian reported that unnamed experts believed the virus may infect poultry without making them sick, making it more difficult to track.
The World Health Organization still said it was "unlikely" to become a pandemic. The World Health Organization stated that there was no evidence of ongoing human-to-human transmission. The close contacts of those infected with H7N9 are being monitored, but have shown no signs of infection.
TreatmentCurrently, no vaccine exists for H7N9, but antigenic and genome sequencing suggests that H7N9 is sensitive to neuraminidase inhibitors, such as oseltamivir and zanamivir. Oseltamivir is also known under its trade name Tamiflu.
On April 4th, 2013The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has begun sequencing and development of a vaccine as routine procedure for any new transgenic virus. The CDC and vaccine manufacturers are developing a candidate virus to be used in vaccine manufacturing if there is widespread transmission.
Shanghai authorities closed a live-poultry-trading zone and began slaughtering all birds. Poultry trading areas in two other areas of the Minhang district were also closed.
VietnamVietnam announced that it would temporarily ban Chinese poultry imports.
SingaporeAll hospitals were informed to remain vigilant, and to notify MOH immediately of any suspected cases of avian influenza in individuals who have recently returned from affected areas in China. The WHO does not advise against travel to China at this point in time, as there is no evidence of human-to-human transmission of the virus. However, MOH advised returning travellers from affected areas in China (Shanghai, Anhui, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang) to look out for signs and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as fever and cough, and seek early medical attention if they are ill with such symptoms. MOH also advised individuals to inform their doctors of their travel history, should they develop these symptoms after returning to Singapore.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013 17:05
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Chinese Colonel Says Latest Bird Flu Virus Is U.S. Biological Weapon
A Chinese Air Force officer on Saturday accused the U.S. government of creating the new strain of bird flu now afflicting parts of China as a biological warfare attack. People’s Liberation Army Sr. Col. Dai Xu said the United States released the H7N9 bird flu virus into China in an act of biological warfare, according to a posting on his blog on Saturday. The charge was first reported in the state-run Guangzhou newspaper Southern Metropolis Daily and then picked up by several news outlets in Asia. Of course the US will deny this but never the less, its possible. Thinkof it this way, we have biologial warefare labs and such for a reason and we never use them? No, we do we just don't admit we do. Perhaps this is the case. -Mort
Chinese Military Official: Bird Flu is ‘US Conspiracy’
An outspoken senior official in the People’s Liberation Army has claimed that the H7N9 virus is a U.S. conspiracy designed to provoke mass panic. While his remarks were widely forwarded, they were mostly received with amusement and derision online.
Air force colonel Dai Xu is a controversial figure in China, and is one of the more strident and outlandish military hawks. He is given a mass platform for his views, though, by the major regime mouthpieces China Central Television, whose military channel he appears on, and People’s Daily, whose op-eds pages he frequents.
On April 6, Dai was at it again, this time via his microblog, claiming the new bird flu epidemic in eastern China is a U.S. ploy to create instability. He added that China should keep a low profile so it would not be “fooled like in the 2003 SARS incident.”
Netizens were quick to poke fun at Dai’s outrageous remarks. Some said he must be close friends with professor Kong Qingdong at Beijing University, who not long ago claimed that the capital’s smog problem is a “meteorological war” waged by the United States.“At that time ‘M Country’ was afraid China would make a move while it was at war against Iraq and used a bio-psychological weapon [SARS] on China,” Dai wrote, indirectly referring to the United States.
In Chinese, America is called Meiguo. “That created massive chaos in China, which was exactly what M country wanted. China must learn its lesson and take it easy this time.” Others joked that America must have also tainted China’s baby milk formula, and thrown masses of dead pigs in Chinese rivers. Another Internet user asked, “How many scumbags like Dai Xu are there in the People’s Liberation Army?”
Online columnist Liu Yiming, formerly a reporter with Wuhan’s China magazine, told the Sound of Hope (SOH) Radio Network that national anxiety over the virus is actually due to the authorities’ deliberate concealment of the epidemic.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013 10:46“Whether there will be social panic has nothing to do with other countries,” Liu said. “It all depends on whether the information in China is transparent; blocking information and issuing phony announcements are the root cause of social panic.” At the end of his latest outburst, Dai said that H7N9 bird flu “can’t kill that many people, not even one-thousandth of the number killed in car accidents,” although he later deleted this comment.Prominent economist Han Zhiguo, who has more than 4 million fans on his blog, described Dai as “anti-humanity.”Political commentator Su Ming described Dai in severe terms in an interview with SOH. “Whoever makes such comments in this lofty tone is completely immersed in the evil nature of the Communist Party,” Su said. “There is not a single moral fiber remaining. A responsible government should hold itself responsible, even if only ONE of its people died of unknown causes.” | Read the original Chinese article. | The Epoch Times | Chinese Military Official: Bird Flu is ‘US Conspiracy’
China’s Bird Flu Problem Getting Worse
China has been paralyzed by an emerging human strain of bird flu, H7N9, which has now infected 28 people, 8 of whom died. In just the last two days, four more people have tested positive for the virus, according to Xinhua. The latest case has hospitalized a 62-year-old man in Shanghai. About 30 percent of patients who have been diagnosed with the virus have died.
The virus took its first victims in early March. This is the first time that the H7N9 flu strain has made the jump into humans, so we haven't built up a natural resistance. Luckily, the virus doesn't seem to be able to spread between humans, though it's possible it could mutate and gain this ability. Update: Reports from FluTrackers indicate that a ninth person has died from the virus, as of 2pm EST April 8.
China has been paralyzed by an emerging human strain of bird flu, H7N9, which has now infected 28 people, 8 of whom died. In just the last two days, four more people have tested positive for the virus, according to Xinhua.
The latest case has hospitalized a 62-year-old man in Shanghai. About 30 percent of patients who have been diagnosed with the virus have died. The virus took its first victims in early March. This is the first time that the H7N9 flu strain has made the jump into humans, so we haven't built up a natural resistance. Luckily, the virus doesn't seem to be able to spread between humans, though it's possible it could mutate and gain this ability. Chinese authorities are killing off birds — 20,000 in one poultry market — in areas where the infection has popped up, to try to stop the virus from spreading further. Doctors are being trained in how to handle these infections, and a vaccine is being developed.
A test is available, but some are worried that it might not be detecting all cases. | Read more: HERE | China’s Bird Flu Problem Getting Worse
A new and deadly strain of bird flu in China is spreading rapidly, based on comments from officials saying the opposite."So far, we really only have sporadic cases of a rare disease, and perhaps it will remain that way. So this is not a time for over-reaction or panic," said Michael O'Leary, a representative with the World Health Organization. On Monday the official number of cases rose to 24, with seven deaths.
A Chinese official also said everything is relatively fine. "We are confident we can effectively control it,” said Li Bin, the head of China's National Health and Family Planning Commission.
But that's exactly the problem—these types of officials usually say close to the opposite of what's going on. Which is why we can infer that the flu is spreading rapidly, and that Chinese officials aren't confident they can control it. We need look no further than the SARS epidemic that quickly spread in the early 2000's. Chinese and world health officials repeatedly assured the public nothing was wrong with SARS, until the story broke out that there was indeed something very wrong. First covered by The Epoch Times using reporters and sources placed in key places inside the country and government, SARS turned out to have been spreading rapidly—eventually spreading to more than 30 nations, and killing more than 700 people. More than 8,000 people were infected.Later, people reporting the 2006 bird flu became public enemies. In fact, the World Health Organization seems to be going against a report issued in 2008, in which it said that infectious diseases are now spreading geographically much faster nowadays than at any time in history. “It would be extremely naïve and complacent to assume that there will not be another disease like AIDS, another Ebola, or another SARS, sooner or later,” the report warned. It later said the next influenza pandemic will “likely be of an avian variety.”
It's “a matter of when, not if,” the organization stated. And when it happens, "an outbreak or epidemic in one part of the world," with billions of people traveling via airplane every year, "is only a few hours away from becoming an imminent threat somewhere else."
On Monday, O'Leary, with the organization, emphasized there's been no evidence of human-to-human transmission. Yet even he could not deny that “the disease is very serious,” and, even according to official numbers, “a large percentage of cases have died—or a substantial percentage have died and others are critically ill.” A possibility in all of this is the infected humans having contact with animals or places where animals frequent; there's been increasingly rampant problems with dozens of dead animals recently, whether they be thousands of pigs; hundreds of fish; or more than a thousand ducks.
April 8, 2013 10:54Chinese officials claim they are working on a vaccine for the virus, but it may take up to eight months for it to be ready. "China is demonstrating their ability to get on top of this problem quickly," said O'Leary. Laurie Garrett, an expert on global public health at the Council on Foreign Relations, said the Chinese regime likely wouldn't admit if the virus has been spreading rapidly or if human-to-human contact has been found. “All the pieces are falling into the kind of worrisome places that we keep an eye on at this stage of an outbreak,” she told Businessweek. Doublespeak: China’s Bird Flu Spreading Rapidly
Avian flu deaths revive SARS memoriesMonday, April 8, 2013 10:54
A group of my university students decided to go to Nanjing for Qingming Festival, but abruptly canceled their trip after reaching Hefei upon hearing news of the outbreak of the deadly bird flu H7N9. On their flight back to Beijing, many passengers rejected the meal offering of chicken and noodles, despite flight attendants assuring them the cooking process had killed any bacteria.
Surely, such panic is an unnecessary overreaction.
Yet, the nervousness is understandable. People remember the 2002-03 SARS epidemic that started in Hong Kong and spread rapidly to the Chinese mainland.
I recall the fear at that time, of people rushed to specially-designated quarantine hospitals, of doctors and nurses risking their lives to tend victims, and of the special precautions at airports around the region to check travelers from any infected area.
Compared to SARS, the various outbreaks of bird flu have been relatively small and usually among those directly handling live poultry.
Influenza occurs naturally in wild birds and doesn't seem to affect them. However, consequences can be fatal when they disperse the virus in their saliva and feces and infect domestic poultry and humans.
And it is this that strikes fear into people's hearts - along with the fact that, each time, the virus mutates; even if you survived last time, the antibodies your immune system build up are useless to fight the new strain.
One comfort is that, so far, bird flu can only be transmitted from poultry to humans. Should it ever break through the barrier and become transmittable by human contact, the repercussions could be even more catastrophic.
In 1918 at the end of World War I, a great flu pandemic swept the world. It is estimated that 21.5 million people died. In the US, the death toll reduced the average lifespan for a decade.
In a broader context, it seems animal diseases that threaten humans are more likely to occur in Asia than elsewhere. Indeed, bird flu is now considered as "endemic" to Asia.
Why should this be? You only have to travel around countries like China or Vietnam to see the way that poultry exist in close cohabitation with humans. At the same time, live birds are on offer in congested livestock markets amid residential areas.
In the West, it's rare these days to see people carrying home a live bird for the dining table. We have become accustomed to buying chicken or turkey neatly wrapped in antiseptic cellophane, or tucked away on a bread roll ready-cooked in fast-food restaurants.
April 9, 2013 9:11No matter how you try to keep a livestock market clean and antiseptic, they remain a breeding ground for diseases. By all means ban flight of domesticated pigeons, as Beijing does sporadically, but surely we need much deeper measures to tackle the handling of meat sources to prevent the disease incubating. Otherwise, the only response will continue to be mass poultry slaughter. | globaltimes.cn | Fair Use: Educational | Avian flu deaths revive SARS memories | H7N9 Bird Flu Update: 21 Infected, 6 Dead
Bird Flu: Shanghai’s Latest DisasterBird Flu H7N9: Just Another Shanghai Disaster | NTD China Uncensored | NTDonChina | HERE
Now Shanghai is being hit with bird flu. Things are beginning to look a little apocalyptic Shanghai. First 16,000 dead pigs wash up in the Huangpu River. Then a quarter ton of dead fish turn up. And now the dread bird flu has returned, shortly after the 10-year anniversary of the SARS outbreak that the Chinese regime tried to cover up. Five have died in Shanghai and two nearby with a total of 24 cases of infection from the bird flu (as of writing this.) On this episode of China Uncensored, Chris Chappell takes a look at the H7N9 virus. It's mutated and can now affect humans.
But will it mutate again so it can be passed from person to person and become a deadly epidemic?
Tuesday, April 9, 2013 0:56Subscribe for more China Uncensored: HERE Make sure to share with your friends! Bird Flu: Shanghai’s Latest Disaster
The Chicken-Pig Nightmare
In March 2013, the shocking news that more than 15,000 dead pigs had been found floating in the river providing the main source of water for the city of Shanghai was followed with the news that health officials had confirmed several cases of a deadly new virus, H7N9. While China’s government sought to reassure the public that the H7N9 cases had no relation to the dead pigs, many people remained unconvinced. In the above political cartoon, posted to Sina Weibo by an online artist under the alias “Da Wei 29″ (大卫29_45177), a chicken is depicted wearing the skin of a pig. The piece is called “Nightmare.” | Source: HERE | The Chicken-Pig Nightmare
Posted: Apr 10, 2013 10:52 AM ET
Last Updated: Apr 10, 2013 10:52 AM ET
Boy recovers from H7N9 bird flu in China
World Health Organization says at least two family clusters are being investigated
The Associated Press
A 4-year-old boy has recovered from a new strain of bird flu that has killed nine people in China, a doctor said Wednesday.
The child from Shanghai is among 33 people confirmed to have been infected with the H7N9 virus. The official Xinhua News Agency said he was the first to completely recover and be discharged from a hospital.
A doctor at the Infectious Disease Department of the Pediatric Hospital affiliated with Shanghai's Fudan University confirmed the boy had recovered and left the hospital, but said she didn't know if it was the first recovery from H7N9. She refused to give her name, as Chinese officials often do.
Five new cases of H7N9 infection were reported on Wednesday. Two of those were in Shanghai, two in Jiangsu province, and one in Zhejiang province, according to the websites of the provincial and city health authorities. Both Zhejiang and Jiangsu border Shanghai.
China announced the first known cases on March 31, sparking concern among experts worldwide because it was the first time the strain of bird flu has been known to infect humans. They fear the virus could mutate in a way that allows it to spread easily among people, but so far there has been no sign of human-to-human transmission.
Chinese health officials believe people may be getting sick from direct contact with infected fowl, but the virus is hard to track because it appears to be spreading in birds without making them ill. The World Health Organization says at least two family clusters are being investigated, but that there is no evidence of infections among other contacts or health workers who cared for them. There have been no reported cases outside of eastern China.
Xinhua also said Wednesday that police in southwest China detained three people for up to 10 days for spreading false rumours online that the H7N9 virus had been detected in a live poultry market in Guizhou province. It said the report was reposted many times, causing fear among local people.
Meanwhile, Indonesia announced it is suspending the import of poultry products from China until the Chinese government confirms the country is free of the virus.