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Seven anthrax cases confirmed in NE China | Updated: 2012-08-14 15:22

Seven cases of cutaneous anthrax have been confirmed in northeast China's Liaoning province, local health authorities said on Monday.

A village in Liaozhong county in which three cases were reported is under quarantine as a ban has been placed on livestock and meat products entering or leaving its boundaries, the Liaoning provincial health bureau said in a statement.

Currently there are no fatal cases, the statement added.

Also on Monday, a health ministry spokesman said that two cases of cutaneous anthrax have been confirmed in Lianyungang of east China's Jiangsu province,

Skin irritations were found among seven villagers in Lianyungang, said Deng Haihua, the ministry spokesman, at a press conference in Beijing.

The symptoms of the other five villagers were not typical, but they have also been placed under medical observation, he said.

All seven villagers are in stable, non-serious conditions, according to Deng.

The infected villagers were believed to have taken part in killing a sick cow.

Cutaneous, or skin, anthrax is the least serious form of the disease. It is usually contracted when a person with a cut or sore on their skin comes into direct, unprotected contact with anthrax spores on a sick or dead animal.

The provincial health department responded shortly after the events were reported. Medical teams were sent to treat the villagers and sanitize the farm and their residences, Deng said.

The spokesman explained that health departments will strengthen their monitoring for anthrax and help educate local people about the disease, while agricultural departments have also been informed of the events.

"We will closely follow the development of these cases and make sure the disease is under control," he vowed.

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