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This is an international website intended to remain accessible to as many people as possible. The opinions expressed here are those of the individual posters who remain solely responsible for the content of their messages.
The use of good judgement during the discussion of controversial issues would be greatly appreciated.

News Reports for April 20

by: Nimbus

Sat Apr 19, 2008 at 23:52:45 PM EDT


Open this diary to read today's news and to see a summary of yesterday's news.  
Nimbus :: News Reports for April 20
Summary of News for April 19, 2008
General
•    PANDEMIC: Not matter of if, but when (Link)
•    Confronting an influenza pandemic with inexpensive generic agents: can it be done? (Link)
•    Influenza - Information on Influenza (Link)
•    Free full-text influenaza research journal (Link)
Australia
•    Australia - Paramedics' facial hair threat (Link)
Canada
•    BC - broad new powers to public health officers (Link)
Indonesia
•    Official warns millions could be infected in bird flu pandemic (Link)
South Korea
•    Korea confirms another highly pathogenic bf outbreak (Link) and (Link) and (Link)
•    In South Korea hospitalized patients avian influenza (Link)
•    Full Text of S. Korea-U.S. Summit Statement (Link)
United States
•    Purdue, CDC work on avian flu vaccine (Link)
•    Ocala, FL - Schools deemed emergency vaccination sites (Link)

Usual disclaimer that I may not have captured everything. Feel free to add news where omissions have occurred. Please note that I copy the links directly from the prior day's news thread so if they don't work you may need to re-visit the thread:

News Reports for April 19


WHO-confirmed total human cases as of Apr. 17, 2008: 381 cases with 240 deaths
2008 WHO-confirmed cases: 30 cases with 23 deaths

Link to most recent WHO report


Indonesia Summary - Updated as of 04/06/08

    2006   2007   2008
Cases Discussed   Jun-Dec   Jan-Dec   Jan Feb Mar Apr Total
Died, no test results   24   27   0 1 4 0 5
Died, tested positive   18   36   7 2 3 0 12
Other tested positive   5   6   2 1 1 0 4
Symptoms, tests pending   146   415   26 13 18 14 71
Tested negative   99   224   5 5 14 0 24
Totals   292   708   40 22 40 14 116

Link to Current Indonesia Diary
Influenza Viruses Isolated by WHO/NREVSS Collaborating Laboratories (U.S.)
2007 - 2008 Season (most recent 8 weeks)
WeekA(H1)A(H3)A(Unk)BTotal # Tested% Positive
08160847239211991509530.46
09111718179712081380527.77
1059538125411261298322.93
1162396774891978721.69
1237216494670763618.56
13785307502575715.65
141141211345421714.42
15524105216293511.93
Data source: CDC Weekly Influenza Summary

Thanks to all of the newshounds! Special thanks to the Indonesia & Egypt newshounds for their excellent work - thanks for keeping us all informed!

Other useful links:
CDC Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report
CIDPC (Canada) Weekly FluWatch
European CDC Influenza News
Charts and Graphs on H5N1 from WHO
Wiki Main Page
Tags: , , (All Tags)
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Vietnam begins second human trial of bird flu vaccine
Story from Thanh Nien News
Published: 20 April, 2008, 13:09:09 (GMT+7)
http://www.thanhniennews.com/h...

The Ministry of Health Saturday started the first stage of a second human trial for a human vaccine for the H5N1 virus.  

An official from the ministry said 30 volunteers from the Military Medical Academy in Ha Tay Province near Hanoi were injected with a one millimeter dose of the vaccine.

Stage One of the trial is expected to last for 56 days.

After the first injection, the volunteers' health will be closely monitored and they will undergo blood tests.

Reported by Viet Chien


S. Korea culls 5 million poultry over bird flu
SEOUL (Thomson Financial) - Almost 5 million poultry have been slaughtered in South Korea to contain the spread of bird flu since it hit the country earlier this month, the agriculture ministry said Sunday.

The avian influenza has hit 25 farms with 4.85 million chickens and ducks culled since the first outbreak on April 1, the ministry said in a statement.
(Snip)
'We have not made a full count of H5N1 outbreaks yet, which should be released after putting this epidemic under control first,' Kim Chang-Sup, a director handling bird flu at the ministry, told Agence France-Presse Sunday.

'Simple test kits we use now in the field can verify if it is of avian influenza or not, but not of a subtype. If we confirm outbreaks, our priority goes to culling, not testing.' But Kim denied some news reports that 25 outbreaks were all of the H5N1 strain. Officials have privately confirmed at least seven H5N1 outbreaks. Continued: http://www.forbes.com/markets/...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


Myanmar declares itself bird flu free
YANGON (AFP) - Myanmar's military government on Sunday declared the country bird-flu free after three months without an outbreak of the deadly virus, state media reported.

The Myanmar-language Mirror newspaper said authorities had "sent the announcement of a bird flu-free Myanmar" to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, and supplied evidence.

The last known outbreak of the deadly H5N1 virus was in eastern Shan State last November, the paper said, and was under control by January this year.

Myanmar last declared itself free of avian influenza in September 2006 after outbreaks in the central city of Mandalay. But in early 2007, thousands more chickens, birds and ducks had to be killed after fresh outbreaks in and around the economic hub Yangon and in the central region of Bago.

In December, Myanmar and the World Health Organisation announced that a seven-year-old girl from Shan state had become the first confirmed human case of bird flu in the country. She was hospitalised in late November before being discharged in December after showing signs of recovery.

Myanmar's military rulers normally operate behind a veil of secrecy, but the regime has won praise from the United Nations for its openness in tackling bird flu, despite its run-down health system. Continued: http://afp.google.com/article/...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


What's the average number of days between an 'H5N1 free' announcement
and an outbreak? One can almost accuse H5N1 of having a sense of irony. Or does it just respond to a challange ;-)  

[ Parent ]
RE:bird free
I noticed that too.  It's usually within a few weeks...

[ Parent ]
What's different after their declaration?
Trade in poultry resumes.  Farmers restock.  Does more smuggling happen?  Is the virus hiding?  Do they test the chicken coops' soil or feed before restocking?

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Very relevant questions, Jane. n/t


"I am opposed to any form of tyranny over the mind of man."  Thomas Jefferson

[ Parent ]
Very good question
And I don't know if anyone knows the answer.

I think it's this persistence that is raising the concern of World authorities at the moment. Maybe as much as the high fatality. I think they thought that H5N1 would slowly blend back into the bird virus background. It's not going away. It's a threat to food production if nothing else.

I find myself asking a lot of questions -
Will it become endemic world wide?
How will it react with different races and/or temperatures?
How long will it be before countries give up trying to eradicate it?
How dangerous will H5N1 be when people take their eye off the ball?


[ Parent ]
:o) LoL, I know it is not funny but that was Great!!! UK-Bird. So sad, so funny. Two thumbs up! n/t


[ Parent ]
I agree with Kobie.
Good comment UK - Bird.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


[ Parent ]
Bac Lieu at risk of bird flu outbreak
BAC LIEU - Officials have warned that bird flu is likely to recur in the southern province of Bac Lieu because local authorities have been unable to vaccinate ducks being reared on paddy fields against the H5N1 virus. (Snip) around 30,000 ducks have been bred on paddy fields where the rice has been harvested. http://vietnamnews.vnagency.co...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


Record Levels of H5N1 in South Korea
                                                         
Recombinomics Commentary 12:17
April 20, 2008
http://www.recombinomics.com/N...

The avian influenza has hit 25 farms with 4.85 million chickens and ducks culled since the first outbreak on April 1, the ministry said in a statement.

The ministry statement on Sunday did not specify how many of the 25 outbreaks, though all involving the H5 virus, were of the "deadly" H5N1 strain that sometimes claims human lives.

"We have not made a full count of H5N1 outbreaks yet, which should be released after putting this epidemic under control first," Kim Chang-Sup, a director handling bird flu at the ministry, told Agence France-Presse Sunday.

But Kim denied some news reports that 25 outbreaks were all of the H5N1 strain. Officials have privately confirmed at least seven H5N1 outbreaks.

The above comments indicate South Korea is playing fast and loose with the facts regarding H5N1 infections throughout the southwestern portion of the country (see satellite map).  The government has already filed OIE reports detailing 11 outbreaks by April 15.  6 were confirmed H5N1 and five were confirmed HPAI H5.  HPAI H5 in South Korea in the proximity of HPAI H5N1 is H5N1.  Although technically the N1 had not yet been determined, the HPAI would indicate that the cleavage site of H5 had been sequenced and it had a polybasic cleavage site, which would indicate the H5 was from H5N1 and probably the Uvs Lake strain of H5N1 (a more evolved version of the clade 2.2 Qinghai strain, which was reported for South Korea in the 2006/2007 outbreak.

An April 19 (Stars and Stripes) report from the US military in Korea indicates 20 outbreaks have been classified as HPAI H5 and 16 more farms were suspected H5N1, once again strongly suggesting that all 25 H5 outbreaks have been classified as HPAI H5, which means they will all be classified H5N1 after the N1 is determined.

Thus, stating that not all H5 outbreaks have been classified as H5N1 in the absence of a statement saying that not all H5 have been classified as HPAI H5 (which would subsequently be classified as H5N1) is at best misleading.

It is extremely likely that all 25 H5 outbreaks have already been classified as HPAI H5 and it is also extremely likely that the 15-20 suspect H5N1 outbreaks will test as HPAI H5, followed by the H5N1 Qinghai strain.

Thus, this outbreak will almost certain be the largest outbreak reported to date in South Korea (almost 5 million birds have already been culled), and would also highlight significant surveillance detection / reporting failures in neighboring countries, including Japan which has announce plans to implement a pre-pandemic vaccine program targeting 10-20 million citizens, beginning with first responders.


As someone already brought up a few days ago, an almost bigger concern is N. Korea
Knowing how porous borders are, it is more probable than not that outbreaks are occuring there as well. What makes it more of a concern than SK is the fact that the country is extremely poor and at the same time under an iron thumb, so the likelihood of effective control and eradication measures is slim at best.  Not only will any outbreak in birds most certainly spread like wildfire, it seems to me that there would be a higher likelihood of human infections as well due to poverty-related poor health, lowered resistance to disease, and lack of hygiene.

And we may never hear about it at all...or worse, will hear about it when it slips out in H2H form.

Always have a plan B.


[ Parent ]
Bird flu pandemic risk remains
New Zealand - The hysteria surrounding bird flu may have flown the coop but the risk of a pandemic remains.

Timaru pharmacies have noted a distinct decline in the amount of antiviral medication Tamiflu being sold.

Timaru Hospital remains prepared for a pandemic with the medical officer of health Dr Daniel Williams saying the worst case scenario, based on information from the 1918 pandemic, would see 22,000 people in South Canterbury infected and 440 deaths over a few months.

Timaru pharmacies have noticed few sales of Tamiflu, following the initial sell-out. Faulks and Jordan pharmacist Neil Savage said his pharmacy had not sold any for the past 12 months. "At the start we could not get enough supplies.
(Snip)
Timaru Hospital business support manager Nathan Taylor said the hospital held a supply of Tamiflu which was updated continuously and dispensed to hospital patients with influenza like-illnesses.

"We are now entering the influenza season and are focusing on prevention (vaccination) strategies both in the hospital as well as through GPs.

"Should indications demonstrate an influenza pandemic is likely, a large stockpile for the South Island region is held in Christchurch, and would be available to the South Canterbury DHB, and other South Island DHBs. Regional stockpiles also exist for antibiotics used to treat the complications of influenza. Continued: http://www.stuff.co.nz/timaruh...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


Human testing of Vietnamese H5N1 vaccine starts
Story
VietNamNet Bridge - The first phase of the human testing of Vietnamese made H5N1 influenza vaccine officially began Saturday, marking a big step for the country in achieving its goal of protecting humans from the deadly virus.

Twenty four students of the Military Medical Institute, of which seven are female, and six officials of the institute have volunteered to participate in the testing.

All volunteers expressed their wish to contribute to the country's fight against bird flu and anticipated that the experiment would be a success. This success would facilitate the vaccine's use with the general public and put an end to the epidemic.

They will be chosen from 400 people from 18 to 30 years old and will undergo testing over a 90 day period to help scientists evaluate the vaccine's capacity to produce antibodies against the avian influenza H5N1 virus.

Source
http://english.vietnamnet.vn/t...

Note - will this also work on H2H version? They are looking for H5N1 antigens. Even if it works, we may not be out of the woods.  


NMI must be capable of handling hazmat emergency in 1st few days
Story
It is very important for the CNMI to have its own capability to handle a hazardous material emergency at least in a few days, according to two hazmat experts.

All Hazard Management Professionals (AMPRO) president and lead instructor John Scott told the Saipan Tribune that the CNMI's Emergency Response Team for Hazmat is very important for an island like the Commonwealth.

"We can't just ask for help right next door and somebody can be here in a couple of hours. Even FEMA will take three to four days to actually get teams to respond," Scott said.

The lead instructor underscored the need for Saipan to have its own capability to handle hazmat emergency at least the first three to four days.

Scott and AMPRO's assistant instructor J.D. Robinson and safety manager Terry Badley trained last week at Palms Resort Saipan 25 members of the CNMI's Emergency Response Team for Hazmat on hazardous materials

"It could be a chemical accident. It could be a biological event like pandemic flu. It could be a weapon of mass destruction or terrorist incident," Scott said.

Source
http://www.saipantribune.com/n...

Note Remote Island like Sipan, or Hawaii, sees how long it will take for help to arrive. The need to handle bad things on their own is good.


NMI = Northern Mariani Islands
CNMI = Commonwealth of the Northern Mariani Islands

[ Parent ]
H5N1 Levels Raise Concerns
South Korea, Bangladesh and India
The latest H5N1 reports out of South Korea indicate H5 has been confirmed at 25 locations (which are almost certainly H5N1), and 21 additional sites are under investigation. (Snip)Recently, similar reports came out of Bangladesh and India. (Snip)

These reports of record levels of H5N1 in these areas raises concerns that as wild birds fly to common nature reserves at the intersections of major flyways, the H5N1 from each region will recombine and generate more genetic diversity, (Snip)

Included in these new combinations are receptor binding domain changes, which have been widely reported in clade 2.2, especially in human cases in the Middle East. Moreover, vaccine resistant strains in Egypt have acquired a large number of non-synonymous changes, which will also be migrating north in the upcoming weeks.

The repeated and record outbreaks in South Korea may have led to the decision in Japan to implement a pre-pandemic vaccine strategy involving first responders, as well as 10-20 million citizens, which may also lead to an increase in vaccine doses. Stockpiling vaccines makes little sense because H5N1 is constantly evolving away from the early vaccine targets, and this evolution is along multiple parallel pathways.

These changes highlight the need for more active surveillance.  However, the detection of H5N1 in farms prior to the detection in wild birds points toward failed surveillance systems, which limits the predictability of the changes because of gaping holes in the sequence database. http://www.recombinomics.com/N...      

The increasing pace of H5N1 evolution highlights the need for a more robust surveillance system. as well as the likelihood of a major pandemic sooner rather than later.
 

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance Linked to Brisbane Strain
Recombinomics Commentary 22:17
April 20, 2008

A total of 200 (69%) of 290 influenza A (H1N1) viruses were characterized as A/Solomon Islands/3/2006-like, the influenza A (H1N1) component of the 2007--08 influenza vaccine for the Northern Hemisphere, and 70 (24%) were characterized as A/Brisbane/59/2007-like, the recommended H1N1 component of the 2008--09 Northern Hemisphere vaccine.

All the oseltamivir-resistant viruses have been influenza A (H1N1) viruses and have been determined to share the same genetic mutation that confers oseltamivir resistance. These 84 viruses represent 10.2% of the 824 influenza A (H1N1) viruses that have been tested, an increase from four (0.7%) of 588 influenza A (H1N1) viruses tested during the 2006--07 season.

The above comments are from the recent MMWR on the influenza season in the United States.  Recently, sequences from the current flu season have been released at Genbank, and sixteen had H274Y.  However, all were A/Brisbane/59/2007-like suggesting that the frequency of H274Y in the Brisbane strain may be significantly higher than the 10.2% found in H1N1 in the US.  Since Brisbane only represents 24% of the H1N1 isolates in the US, if H274Y is concentrated in Brisbane, the frequency of H274Y in the Brisbane strain could be closer to 40%.  Indeed, there have been 59 Brisbane sequences released, so the 16 with H274Y represent 27% of the Brisbane/59 isolates in the US.

The frequency of Brisbane/59 in European countries may also explain the differences in H274Y frequencies.  In the recent WHO report on next year's vaccine targets, two isolates with H274Y were mentioned, A/Paris/577/2007 and A/Norway/1735/2007, and both were the Brisbane strain.  Norway and France have the highest levels of reported H274Y.

Similarly, two H274Y sequences were released at Genbank this week from Turkey and England, and both were identical to Brisbane-like sequences in the US.

Thus, all public H1N1 sequences from the current season with H274Y have been the Brisbane strain, suggesting that the differences in H274Y frequencies in Europe are largely linked to the frequency of of the Brisbane strain in those countries.

The WHO recommendation, as well as the CDC recommendation, includes Brisbane/59 as the H1N1 target for the fall trivalent vaccine, indicating that Brisbane is becoming dominant and the frequencies of H274Y in H1N1 will increase.  Moreover, the current vaccine, which is directed against Solomon Island-like H1N1 may have contributed to the increase in the H274Y frequency by limiting Solomon Island infections.

More information on the association of H274Y with the Brisbane strain would be useful.


do note that since H3 has been the predominant strain
this year (three times as many reported H3 cases as H1 in the US) and last, the actual tamiflu resistance this year has been small.

It's a notable finding for next year, though.


[ Parent ]
Indeed . . .
Especially if we want to make an effective vaccine.

[ Parent ]
I wonder if there are statistics kept that indicate what percentage of
H1N1 flu victims in Brisbane were treated with tamiflu in the past 3 or 4 flu seasons, as compared with tamiflu treatment given for that strain in the US, and compared with tamiflu given for H3 flu strain infections in both countries.

Is H1N1 usually a bit nastier than H3, thus more likely to have required tamiflu intervention rather than just letting the disease run its course?

The point is, of course, that the naturally occuring mutations that lead the virus to be tamiflu resistant would have to be selected for by widespread use of tamiflu in an area which eliminates the "competition" (ie, the non-resistant strains) leaving the resistant ones to proliferate and spread (IMseO.)( somewhat educated.) ;o}

Always have a plan B.


[ Parent ]
i doubt it, or at least doubt we know
most flu cases are not treated with tamiflu in the US and most admitted flu cases are never typed beyond A or B.

There's nothing in previous seasons to suggest H1 is worse than H3... we've had cases of both for several years now in the US.


[ Parent ]
ProMed Report: Chinese fisherman die on boat: flu?
Date: 19 Apr 2008
From: Mirian M. De Moura
Source: G1 [in Portuguese, trans. Mod.JW, edited] http://g1.globo.com:80/Noticia...

2 people died on board a vessel with suspected flu virus.
Ship stranded on the high seas near the port of Callao, Peru.

Peruvian health authorities declared an epidemic alert and quarantined  
at sea the crew of a fishing vessel in which 2 Chinese people died,  
apparently due to a type of influenza virus, the newspaper "La Republica" reported this Saturday [19 Apr 2008].

The alert forced the Peruvian Navy to isolate the 22 crew members of the ship on the high seas and 30 Peruvians, among sailors and health staff, who entered the ship when the death of the cook and a fisherman was reported, 9 Apr 2008.

According to "La Republica", "a strange mutant virus was the cause of the agonizing death of 2 Chinese crew of the fishing vessel 'Chan An 168', who died on 9 Apr 2008, off the coast of the port of Callao."

The vessel was isolated 12 km off the main Peruvian port and is guarded by the Navy, while Peruvian sailors and medical personnel are being observed to see if they have been infected.

--
Communicated by:
ProMED-mail
[There is no mention of any lab tests confirming the diagnosis of any  
type of influenza virus etiology, let alone "a strange mutant virus".  
I suspect the fact that these were apparently sudden deaths of Chinese led to a perhaps understandable over-reaction by Peruvian health authorities, fearing bird flu.  It must have taken the fishing vessel a number of days to reach the Peruvian coast from China, and the incubation period of human influenza is 2-5 days.  Assuming the same holds for bird flu, the fatal illness was probably not contracted in China.  Perhaps the cook prepared a meal from stored chicken that had been infected with bird flu before freezing, although I'd always thought that fishermen lived on fish.  A violent attack of food poisoning could have been the cause.  We would like to hear about the lab results. - Mod.JW]


Here's the source from La Republica in Peru (translated)
http://www.larepublica.com.pe/...

Epidemic Alert in Callao

Medical monitoring extended to 30 Peruvians of the Navy and Maritime Health that boarded the boat that was in quarantine.

A dangerous and strange mutant "adenovirus" was the cause of the death of two Chinese crew of the fishing ship "Chan An 168", who passed away last April ninth off the coast of the port of the Callao.

This has raised the epidemic alarms. The health authorities of the country have imposed a quarantine and medical monitoring on 30 medical professionals and personal of the Navy that went to the aid of the fishing boat as a precautionary measurement. Until now none of them presents/displays symptoms of the disease.

Meanwhile, the fishing ship "Chan An 168" and its 22 surviving crew remain in quarantine, in an isolated zone to eight miles (10 kilometers approximately) off the port of the Callao, until it is determined how they acquired the disease. Patrol boats of Navy military watch that nobody boards nor leaves the boat.

DEADLY VÍRUS

The medical examinations have determined that eight of the other Chinese crew have the deadly virus, although they have not developed [symptoms]. Cook Jiang Dexin (40) and the crew member Che Caiqiang (38) of this boat died April 9th, after presenting/displaying high fevers during hours. No medicine could delay the advance of the disease.

The experts of the Legal Medicine Institute of the Public Ministry have determined that the cause of the death was "adenovirus" that has become extremely deadly.

Adenovirus is spread by physical contact or through the air and is endemic in the population, and is one of the causes of the common influenza, but it is usually not considered deadly. At least not until now.

One [possible cause of death] that has been ruled out is Severe Acute Respiratory  Syndrome virus (SARS by its abbreviations in English), atypical pneumonia that appeared for the first time in November of 2002 in the province of Guangdong, China.

The head of the IML, Luis Bromley Coloma, indicated that "we are faced with an adenovirus that mutated and has become deadly, but still it is not known what caused the mutation and how fast it is possible to be spread", which is why the health alert has been declared.

The autopsies performed on the two victims showed multi-organ edema in the brain, lungs, heart, liver, pancreas, kidneys and microhemorrhages in all the organs. Toxicological, biological and pathological examinations determined the presence of the mutated adenovirus.

Now, the health authorities are working to establish where and what generated the mutation to find a way to cure or contain it.

EMERGENCY MEETING

The "Chan An 168" is a fishing ship of [pota] and shrimp that weighed anchor off the port of Yautay in China on August 19, 2007 with 23 people. Since then they have not landed.  On December 13 they delivered their products to another boat and received two other crew. The same it happened on March 15, 2008.

On April 9th the harbor authorities of the Callao received the distress call of the captain of the "Chan An", Uquin Zhipeng. That morning two Chinese crew, the cook and a fisherman, had died.

[AlohaOR's note: The two crewmen died 25 days after last contact with anyone other than the ship's crew.]

The only symptom that presented/displayed was a high fever that lasted  two to five hours, for which none of the medicines on board did anything.

Lamentably, personnel of Navy and the International Marine Health boarded the Chinese boat to provide assistance, without taking the necessary precautions to avoid infection, for which reason it was decided to quarantine those personnel. The disease can incubate for 14 days to three months.

Specialists of the IML, Epidemiología of the Ministry of Defense, Navy military  and the Ministry of Health met yesterday to evaluate the results of the biological and pathological examinations in order to adopt the preventive measures necessary to avoid the spread of the virus.

DETAIL

The virus. "Adenovirus" was described for the first time as a viral agent in 1953. It is endemic in the pediatric population. There are more than 40 strains of adenovirus and can cause illnesses of varied severity, although most frequently they occur in the respiratory tract and the intestine, the skin or at ocular level. At the present time their properties  are used in the therapy of diseases like the cystic fibrosis and lung cancer.

"It is a deadly and very aggressive virus"

   "The autopsies indicate that both Chinese crew died because of a pneumonia, resulting from adenovirus, a characteristic of the influenza that usually is not mortal. What happens in this case is that the virus has mutated and has become lethal and, for that reason we are on epidemiological alert, declared the head of the Legal Medicine Institute, Luis Bromley, yesterday.

   The specialist added that the disease presents/displays two characteristics: a trait that has been found is that the victims are people with weakened immune systems from almost a year at sea, isolated and living in subhuman conditions. The other factor is under study, we do not know what the cause that led to the mutation and how to fight it.

   "For that reason all the crew has been evaluated and eight crew members were found to be infected, they present/display the mutated adenovirus and they are under observation; it is not possible to treat them, because it is not known how to fight this virus. Normally that would disappear [not be the case?], but it has mutated [to become] deadly, [and] is extremely aggressive'', emphasized Bromley.

[...The] 30 Peruvian people who boarded the ship to provide help and came into contact with patients [mut] remain in epidemiological surveillance, isolated and without contact with their families until they have ruled out the deadly disease.

In these cases "security measures may sound extreme, but prevention is better than later having to bear the consequences if nothing was done", the head of the Institute of Forensic Medicine asserted emphatically.


[ Parent ]
"The disease can incubate for 14 days to three months."
Three months?  Do other diseases incubate for that long?  That's a long time to quarantine those sailors and medics, but then the disease is lethal.

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
adenovirus is generally
2-14 days at most. Just saying it in a news article doesn't make it so, therefore more confirmatory data needed.

[ Parent ]
Follow-up on case in Peru (health risk downplayed)
http://www.larepublica.com.pe/...

Peruvian authorities dismiss alert epidemic deaths in Chinese boat
Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Republic

The Ministry of Health in Peru dismissed reports that he had given a warning of epidemics in the port of Callao Lima after two Chinese citizens died in a fishing boat.

The head of the General Directorate for Epidemiology ministry, Gladys Ramirez, explained that it was ordered that the ship remain in quarantine as a precautionary measure, said an official statement.

Also that the tests performed on the crew have revealed that the 22 crew members are in good health, "with no fever and no signs of alarm."

Ramirez said that the ministry conducts health research and has taken "all [necessary/appropriate] measures," according to national and international standards, to safeguard the population.

A Lima newspaper reported last Saturday that health authorities had declared the epidemiological alert and isolated crew of the Chinese fishing.

According to the report, the 22 crew of the ship and ashore 30 Peruvians had been isolated on the high seas, including marine and health personnel who entered the boat when it reported the death of a fisherman and cook, last April 9 .

He noted further that "a strange mutant adenovirus was the cause of death of two crew members agónica Chinese fishing vessel Chan An 168, nine of whom died last April off the coast of the port of Callao."

The head of the Institute of Forensic Medicine, Luis Bromley, also stated that eight other crewmen of the ship were infected and are under observation, without receiving treatment because they "do not know how to fight this virus."

The Chan An is a fishing vessel that sailed from China in August 2007 and since then has had no contact with land, which, apparently, was that the immune system of its crew were affected, the doctor said. (Lima, EFE).


[ Parent ]
Please post new articles to the April 21 news diary
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