Friday, May 17, 2013 Outbreak with a Novel Avian Influenza A(H7N9) virus in China - Scenarios and Triggers for Assessing Risks and Planning Responses in the EU, May 2013
EU - As part of the risk assessment and strategic planning related to the emergence of avian influenza A(H7N9) in China, Schenk and colleagues at the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has considered two major scenarios.Eurosurveillance
The current situation is the one of a zoonotic epidemic (Scenario A) in which the virus might be transmitted sporadically to humans in close contact with an animal reservoir. The second scenario is the movement towards efficient human to human transmission (a pandemic Scenario B).
The authors identified epidemiological events within the different scenarios that would trigger a new risk assessment and a review of the response activities to implement in the European Union (EU).
They also identified the surveillance activities needed to detect these events.
Friday, April 19, 2013 Guiding Outbreak Management by Use of Influenza A(H7Nx) Virus Sequence Analysis
EU - The recently identified human infections with avian influenza A(H7N9) viruses in China raise important questions regarding possible source and risk to humans. Sequence comparison with an influenza A(H7N7) outbreak in the Netherlands in 2003 and an A(H7N1) epidemic in Italy in 1999–2000 suggests that widespread circulation of A(H7N9) viruses must have occurred in China. The emergence of human adaptation marker PB2 E627K in human A(H7N9) cases parallels that of the fatal A(H7N7) human case in the Netherlands. Eurosurveillance
Monday, June 04, 2012 Deadly Bird Flu Outbreaks in EU
EU - The highly pathogenic avian influenza virus H5N1 has been found in wild swans in Greece, Italy and Bulgaria. Further tests are being carried out on the H5 virus found in a wild swan in Slovenia.EurActiv.com
Thursday, December 29, 2011 EC Publishes Latest Bird Flu Surveillance Report
EU - The European Commission (EC) has published its 2010 avian influenza surveillance reports for poultry and wild birds, reports the England and Wales Farmers Union. ThePoultrySite News Desk
Friday, December 23, 2011 Commission Publishes 2010 AI Surveillance Reports
EU - In response to the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 virus the European Commission required all Member States to step up their surveillance for avian influenza to enable early detection and rapid response in the event of an outbreak.ThePoultrySite News Desk
Thursday, March 19, 2009 Officials Spooked by Bird Flu Mix-up
EU - Public health officials in Europe are taking steps to make sure there's no repeat of a recent incident in which the lethal H5N1 virus was accidentally combined with a seasonal flu virus and shipped to labs in Europe.FierceBiotech
Friday, December 19, 2008 European Agency Endorses Baxter's Bird Flu Vaccine
EU - Baxter International Inc.'s vaccine to combat the bird flu today won an endorsement from European health officials.
Friday, January 11, 2008 EU Endorse Measures for Poland and Germany
EU - Following recent outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza in Poland and Germany, the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health today voted in favour of a Decision confirming the eradication and control measures taken by those two Member States. ThePoultrySite
Friday, December 28, 2007 European countries report more H5N1 in poultry
EU - Germany, Poland, and Russia recently reported fresh outbreaks of H5N1 avian influenza in poultry, according to media accounts and reports from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). CIDRAP
Friday, November 30, 2007 Flu Pandemic Would Catch World Unprepared:
UNITED NATIONS — The world remains unprepared to cope with a pandemic in humans arising from bird flu, a UN and World Bank report released Thursday found.AFP
Wednesday, November 28, 2007 Bird Flu Spreading Across Europe
EU - Bird flu may become entrenched throughout parts of Europe, the United Nations recently reported. The statement came after German scientists discovered the fatal h5n1 strain of the avian influenza virus in seemingly healthy ducks and geese.TheTrumpet
Tuesday, September 04, 2007 UN says domestic birds to blame for flu
EU - Samples from 350,000 healthy wild birds in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas have tested negative for bird flu, offering further proof that spread of the virus is mostly contained in domesticated poultry, the United Nations says.
Friday, August 03, 2007 Space Technology Used to Fight Bird-Flu
UN - As more innovative solutions are sought to combat bird-flu, the United Nations has revealed it is looking towards applying space technology to help countries fight the virus, writes Lavinia Mahlangu.AllAfrica
Wednesday, June 13, 2007 Avian flu vaccines safe, say EFSA experts
EU - Vaccination programmes using drugs currently available on the market are providing a safe and effective means of protecting domestic poultry from outbreaks of highly pathogenic strains of avian flu (H5N1), according to the latest scientific opinion to be released by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
Friday, May 18, 2007 EU Countdown To Bird Flu Amendments Continues
EU - The European poultry industry has just six weeks left to prepare itself for new proposals designed to prevent the spread of H5N1 avian influenza into the food chain, the European Commission has warned.FoodQuality
Thursday, April 19, 2007 Research Reveals Ongoing Evolution Of Bird Flu In Europe
EU - Detailed genetic studies of H5N1 bird flu samples collected in Europe, the Middle East and Africa have revealed the existence of a distinct Euro-African strain of the disease in the region and shed new light on the spread of the disease.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007 “Bird Flu” Genome Study Shows New Strains, Western Spread
EU - A team of researchers report the first ever large-scale sequencing of western genomes of the deadly avian influenza virus, H5N1, that confirms not only that the virus has very recently spread west from Asia, but that two of the new western strains have already independently combined, or ?reassorted,? to create a new strain. UniversityOfMaryland
Wednesday, April 04, 2007 UN Agency Warns Bird Flu Still Threatens Lives
UN - Despite Fewer Outbreaks This Year, UN Agency Warns Bird Flu Still Threatens LivesScoop
Tuesday, April 03, 2007 Bird flu declining but disease continues to spread: FAO
EU - The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has said that bird flu is on the decline around the world, but warned the disease continues to spread in different countries, threatening the lives of those working around poultry and hurting farm economies.
Friday, March 23, 2007 No need for poultry vaccination in Europe -U.N. vet
E.U - Europe has boosted control and response systems to bird flu and does not need a preventive vaccination of poultry to fight the disease, a top United Nations veterinary expert said on Thursday.
(aka bird flu, avian flu) is caused by a type of influenza virus that is hosted by birds, but may infect several species of mammals. It was first identified in Italy in the early 1900s and is now known to exist worldwide. A strain of the H5N1-type of avian influenza virus that emerged in 1997 has been identified as the most likely source of a future influenza pandemic.
Strains of avian influenza virus may infect various types of animals, including birds, pigs, horses, seals, whales and humans. However, wild fowl act as natural asymptomatic carriers, spreading it to more susceptible domestic stocks. Avian influenza virus spreads in the air and in manure and there is no evidence that the virus can survive in well cooked meat.
How to Recognise Avian Influenza
What to look for
- Ruffled feathers
- Soft-shelled eggs
- Depression and droopiness
- Sudden drop in egg production
- Loss of appetite
- Cyanosis (purplish-blue coloring) of wattles and comb
- Edema and swelling of head, eyelids, comb, wattles, and hocks
- Green diarrhoea
- Blood-tinged discharge from nostrils
- Incoordination, including loss of ability to walk and stand
- Pin-point hemorrhages (most easily seen on the feet and shanks)
- Respiratory distress
- Increased death losses in a flock
- Sudden death
- Nasal discharges
For more detail in avian influenza in poultry click here
Poultry Vaccination as a strategy for controlling AI in commercial birds
Outbreaks of avian influenza in the poultry industry cause devastating economic losses and is generally controlled through extensive culling of infected birds. Alternative strategies also use vaccination as a supplementary control measure during avian influenza outbreaks.
Advantages of Vaccination
For more information on poultry vaccination see:
- Vaccination reduces susceptibility to infection.
- A higher dose of virus is necessary to infect the vaccinated birds.
- Vaccinated birds shed less virus.
- Decreased contamination of the environment.
- Decreased risk of human infection
- Used strategically vaccination compliments a stamping out strategy by slowing/stopping the spread of the virus
Avian Influenza (Fowl Plague) is a potentially devastating disease, predominantly of chickens and turkeys, although the virus can also affect game birds (pheasants, partridge and quail), ratites (ostrich and emu), psittacine and passerine birds.
Avian Influenza is caused by an orthomyxovirus, or influenza virus and can survive for considerable lengths of time outside of the host and birds are infected through contact with other birds, mechanical vectors such as vehicles and equipment and personnel travelling between farms, markets and abattoirs.
Precautionary requirements include cleaning and disinfection of premises and the establishment of a Biosecurity barrier to help prevent spread of disease is essential.
For more information on biosecurity see the links below