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Russia reports first case of H5N8 bird flu in humans – BBC

Multiple workers at a bird-flu affected poultry plant in Russia have been infected with H5N8, making this the first case of H5N8 being passed from poultry to humans.

22 February 2021, at 7:55am

According to the BBC, seven poultry plant workers in southern Russia had been infected with bird flu following an outbreak at the facility in December 2020.

The head of Russia’s consumer watchdog, Anna Popova told the BBC that all seven workers are now feeling well and that measures were quickly adopted to stem the spread of infection.

Popova said that there was no sign of transmission between humans and that the cases had been reported to the World Health Organisation.

She praised researchers at Russia’s Vektor laboratory who had isolated the flu strain’s genetic material from infected workers.

"The discovery of these mutations when the virus has not still acquired an ability to transmit from human to human gives us all, the entire world, time to prepare for possible mutations and react in an adequate and timely fashion," Ms Popova said.

She said that researchers could now develop testing systems for the virus.

Read more about this story on the BBC.