H5N1 virus found in birds in Ningxia
Updated: 2006-07-01 14:06
China has found the H5N1 avian influenza virus in birds in the northwestern
region of Ningxia, the Agriculture Ministry said, suggesting a fresh outbreak.
The National Bird Flu Reference Laboratory identified the virus on Thursday
in samples taken from the town of Xuanhe in Ningxia's Zhongwei city, the
ministry said late on Friday on its Web site (www.agri.gov.cn).
Measures had been taken to prevent the outbreak from spreading, it said. The
announcement did not say whether the virus had been found in domestic or wild
birds, or how many birds had died.
The northern province of Shanxi reported an outbreak of bird flu in poultry
last month, which led to the culling of about 1.5 million birds.
The H5N1 virus has spread among birds across Asia, Europe and Africa. People
who have close contact with infected birds can fall ill, even die. Scientists
fear the virus will mutate into a strain that spreads between humans, sparking a
China has reported about 40 outbreaks of bird flu in birds across a dozen
provinces over the past year, and since November 12 people are known to have
died from the H5N1 strain while six have survived.
The latest human case of bird flu was confirmed on June 15 in the southern
boom town of Shenzhen, bordering Hong Kong, bringing the country's total human
infections to 19. State media said earlier that the man had been in a critical