H5N6 sickens another in China as Egypt notes 2 H5N1 cases

Chinese health officials reported another human case of H5N6 avian flu, the country's seventh case since the end of December, as two more H5N1 detections were reported in Egypt.

Guangdong province an H5N6 hot spot

The new H5N6 case was detailed today in a report from Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP), based on information from the mainland's National Health and Family Planning Commission. The patient is a 40-year-old woman from the Guangdong province city of Huizhou.

Of the recent spate of H5N6 infections from China, all have been in Guangdong province.

The woman's symptoms began on Feb 20 with a fever and cough, and she was admitted to a local hospital on Feb 22, where she is listed in critical condition, the CHP said. An investigation found that she had visited a live-poultry market before she got sick.

Though H5N6 outbreaks have been reported in poultry from a handful of Asian countries, China is the only one that has reported human cases. Since the novel influenza was first detected in 2014, Chinese health officials have reported 10 cases so far, according to the CHP.

The most recent previous H5N6 case was reported by the CHP on Jan 18.

Egyptian H5N1 cases

Meanwhile, two more human H5N1 avian flu infections have been detected in Egypt, bringing to three the number reported in that country since Mar 7. The cases were included in notifications from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) EMPRES (Global Animal Disease Information System) database, which lists cases reported by national authorities.

One of the new cases is from Cairo and was confirmed on Mar 4, while the other is from Giza governorate and noted on Feb 24. Few details are available about the patients in the FAO reports, other than locations, test confirmation dates, and if the patients are currently alive or dead. The latest infections so far aren't fatal.

Egypt's previous case was reported from Sohag governorate, the country's first case this year, according to a Mar 7 FAO report. So far Egypt's government hasn't announced or shared details about the cases.

Global health experts are closely watching H5N1 developments in Egypt, following a surge of more than 140 cases in the first half of 2015.

See also:

Mar 15 CHP statement

Mar 10 FAO EMPRES notification on Cairo case

Mar 12 FAO EMPRES notification on Giza case

Mar 8 CIDRAP News scan "FAO reports human H5N1 case in Egypt"

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