OIE notes 3 new H5N1 outbreaks in Nigeria
The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) posted two reports yesterday detailing three new outbreaks of H5N1 avian flu in Nigerian chickens. Nigeria—along with fellow West African nations Cameroon and Ghana—are struggling with H5N1 in their poultry populations.
Two of the new outbreaks occurred in the Toro and Kosu states, both in central Nigeria. The Toro outbreak began on a farm on Sep 11 and involved 9,700 layers and pullets. The outbreak in Kosu also happened on a farm on Sep 13. More than 10,000 pullets died from H5N1 and 109,700 birds were destroyed.
The third outbreak began Sep 12 and involved 100 pullets in a backyard flock located in Oshimili in Delta state, which is in the southern part of the country.
The news of the outbreaks comes just days after the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) warned that recent cases of H5N1 in the Middle East pose a significant public health threat to that region.
Sep 27 OIE report on central outbreaks
Sep 27 OIE report on southern outbreak
Sep 26 CIDRAP News "FAO warns of H5N1 threat to Middle East"
New case of dengue reported in Miami-Dade County
Florida's Department of Health (Florida Health) confirmed yesterday that Miami-Dade County has its first case of locally acquired dengue illness in 2016, the Miami Herald reported today. Dengue returned to Florida in 2009 after a 70-year absence, but local transmission has not occurred since 2013.
The news comes as Miami-Dade County remains vigilant against cases of locally acquired Zika virus. Like Zika, dengue is an arbovirus transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Dengue appears within 14 days of a mosquito bite and typically causes more severe illness than Zika virus. The person infected in Miami-Dade County has been treated and is expected to make a full recovery, health officials said.
According to the infectious disease blog Avian Flu Diary, on Jun 1, there was a confirmed case of locally acquired dengue in Monroe County, which was the state's first case of the year. So far, according to the Florida Arbovirus Surveillance Report, there have been 40 cases of travel-related dengue in the state this year.
Sep 28 Miami Herald story
Sep 28 Avian Flu Diary post
Novel coronavirus found in wild bats in China
A new study in PLoS Pathogens describes a novel coronovirus in bats, and researchers say the discovery helps shed light on why coronaviruses, including those that cause SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome), are mutating to cause severe disease in human populations.
The researchers discovered the new coronavirus, now called Rousettus bat coronavirus, in a bat sample from Yunnan province in China. Bats can be reservoirs for human pathogens, and the authors of the study collected samples from 118 bats; 47 samples were positive for coronavirus. Next-generation sequencing showed that two samples were novel viruses, and further analysis showed it was a heterologous recombination event that created the new viruses by placing the p10 gene in the virus's RNA.
The authors suggest it is the p10 gene that can cause severe pneumonia when infecting humans, a key feature in coronaviruses.
Sep 27 PLoS Pathog study