Pigeon Patrol says that this is No joking matter!! Chinese researchers are suggesting Canada’s first H5N1 flu patient may have
contracted the bird flu virus passing through or near an illegal live bird market in Beijing.
And Canadian scientists have published a report on the full genetic sequence of virus taken from the Alberta woman, who died in early January after returning from a three-week trip to her native China.
The source of the woman’s infection has been a mystery; she spent her entire trip in Beijing, where H5N1 reportedly hasn’t been discovered for some time, and her travelling companion said she did not have contact with live birds while there.
But scientists from Beijing’s Centre for Disease Prevention and Control are hypothesizing that illegal live bird markets may have been the source of the woman’s infection.
Testing of the area around the market stall where the woman bought the duck revealed the presence of H5N1 viruses that were closely related to the ones that infected her.
As well, they note that several human infections with the newer H7N9 bird flu virus have been reported in Beijing.
The scientists suggest the illegal trade in live poultry in Beijing may pose a high risk of human infection with bird flu viruses for people living in the city.
While she had the respiratory infection that is characteristic of influenza infection, she also had evidence of meningoencephalitis, infection in the brain.
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