NEWS SCAN: H5N1 cases confirmed, low-path avian flu in US

May 6, 2009

WHO confirms two H5N1 cases, one fatal
The World Health Organization (WHO) today confirmed two H5N1 avian influenza cases, one of them fatal, that were apparently reported in the media on Apr 24. The first case involved a 23-year-old Vietnamese woman from Tranh Hoa province who got sick on Apr 16, was hospitalized Apr 21, and died the next day. An investigation revealed poultry deaths from the H5N1 virus around her home. Her illness is now listed as Vietnam's 111th case and its 56th fatality. The second case is in a 34-year-old Egyptian woman from Gharbia governorate who became ill on Apr 21 and was hospitalized and treated with oseltamivir (Tamiflu) the same day. She is in stable condition. An investigation found that she had close contact with sick and dead poultry before she became ill. Her case pushes Egypt's H5N1 count to 68 cases, 23 of them fatal. The two latest cases raise the global H5N1 case count to 423, of which 258 were fatal.
[May 6 WHO statement on Vietnamese case]
[May 6 WHO statement on Egyptian case]

Signs of low-path avian flu outbreak detected in Tennessee
Tyson Foods said yesterday that tests on breeder hens at one of its contract farms in Lincoln County, Tennessee, revealed the chickens had antibodies to a low-pathogenicity H7N9 avian influenza virus, Reuters reported. The birds showed no signs of illness. Authorities culled 15,000 birds to prevent spread of the virus. In late March the same strain was detected in birds at a commercial farm in Kentucky, which led to the culling of 20,000 chickens, but officials haven't said if the two outbreaks were related. [May 5 Reuters story]

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