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China: Bird flu vaccine for human use developed
(China Daily/AP)
Updated: 2005-11-15 06:08

About 800 fowls raised by farmers in Fanwei village near Huainan died on November 6; and the national bird-flu lab confirmed yesterday that the cause was the deadly H5N1 strain of the virus.

More than 126,000 fowls have been culled within 3 kilometres of the epidemic zone; and all poultry markets within 10 kilometres have been closed.

In another development, health authorities are investigating the cases of people who are suspected to have been infected with H5N1 bird flu virus.

For now, experts can only confirm that an ill woman in Northeast China's Liaoning Province is a serious case of pneumonia, Mao Qun'an, spokesman for the Ministry of Health, told China Daily yesterday.

Further tests will be done on Liu, 36, who was hospitalized with high fever on November 6.

Liu, who owns a small chicken farm in Heishan County, had helped neighbours dispose of dead chicken infected with bird flu a week before she developed high fever.

In Central China's Hunan Province, a 12-year-old girl died on October 17 after developing a high fever. Her nine-year-old brother and a 36-year-old school teacher, who had the same symptoms, have recovered.

A World Health Organization (WHO) team arrived in the province yesterday to probe the three suspected cases of human infection.

The six-member WHO team will work in Hunan for about one week, said Roy Wadia, WHO's China spokesman; and possibly meet the two people suspected to be infected with bird flu.

Except for Hunan and Liaoning, no other place in China has reported suspected human cases of bird flu, which has killed more than 60 people in Asia since 2003.

Anhui Province reports new outbreak of bird flu

China on Monday reported a new case of bird flu in poultry in the country's east — its ninth outbreak since Oct. 19.

The news, announced on government television, came as experts from the World Health Organization were in central China to help determine whether bird flu killed a 12-year-old girl and sickened two other people in a village that suffered an outbreak in poultry last month.

China has not confirmed any human cases of bird flu, but authorities have warned that it is inevitable if they cannot control outbreaks among the country's vast poultry flocks.

The newest outbreak in poultry was in Huainan, a city in Anhui province, China Central Television said. The case was first reported on Nov. 6, when 800 domestic poultry died, it said.

It was confirmed Monday to be the virulent H5N1 strain of bird flu, CCTV said.

Some 126,000 poultry within three kilometers (two miles) of the affected area were slaughtered as a precaution, it said.
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