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Monday, October 31, 2005

H5 Bird Flu Found In Canadian Samples

This doesn't mean it's H5N1, just that some wild birds in Canada are testing positive for H5 influenza. What's sort of irksome is that the Canadian government says it might not be able to complete testing to discover which strain of H5 they are carrying:
A national survey of wild migratory ducks has detected avian influenza. Preliminary results indicate that 28 of the positive reactions in Quebec and five in Manitoba were due to the H5 subtype. The Public Health Agency of Canada has determined that there is no information in these findings suggesting a new threat to human health.

The detection of H5 avian influenza is not unexpected: the virus is commonly seen in migratory bird populations around the world and various types and strains have been detected in North America over the last 30 years, with no impact on human health. The birds tested in this national survey were healthy, and there is no evidence of influenza-related illness among domestic or wild birds in the test areas.

Tests to confirm the H5 type and tests to determine the N type of the virus are ongoing. Definitive findings may not be possible if there is insufficient live virus remaining in the original samples. This analysis, which is being conducted at the National Centre for Foreign Animal Diseases in Winnipeg, will take up to a week.
Seek, and thou shalt find...

Dr. Niman of Recombinomics thinks that it is incredible that they can't tell which strain it is:
They are stalling. They can do a sequence on the HA cleavage site in hours. If the sequence contains RRRKKR then it is H5N1 from Asia. That sequence had never been isolated outside of Asia until the isolates in Europe were collected a few weeks ago.
I know poultry producers are worried about it down here.

My doc friend the same thing- that there is no way they cannot differentiate what strain of H5 it is...strange.

I wonder why they are delaying- if is H5N1 and they delay acting, they will only cause them grief, and if it isn't the deadly strain, what's the property.
Problem- what's the problem.

A shipmate's father is in trucking, he relates that his flatbeds have been reserved for transferring bird carcasses to crematoria.

Looks like the DelMarVa Peninsula is going to be on tough times.

Bilgeman - YIKES!

SCY&A - they appear to be instituting new biosecurity measures for poultry farms, so I think they are worried about something.
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