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Vaccine to be tested

By Wang Xiaodong | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-14 07:33

Poultry in two southern regions will begin receiving the first vaccine against the H7N9 bird flu virus early next month, as authorities look to control the spread of the potentially fatal disease.

Guangdong province and the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region have been chosen to test the new vaccine, as both are major centers of the poultry trade, according to the Ministry of Agriculture.

Evidence also indicates the "existence of highly pathogenic and low pathogenic strains of the H7N9 virus" in these areas, the authorities said.

The vaccine, developed by the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences' Harbin Veterinary Research Institute, will be given to all chickens, ducks and geese.

Veterinary departments in the two regions will be responsible for administering the vaccine, monitoring side effects and reporting their findings to the central government.

About 22,000 chickens at a farm in Yulin, Shaanxi province, died on May 23 after being infected with H7N9, according to local authorities.

The provincial government intensified virus prevention and control measures, including slaughtering 23,000 birds, to bring the disease under control, the ministry said.

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