Russian farmworkers were the first humans to contract a new form of bird flu

Seven workers at a poultry farm in southern Russia were the first humans to catch the H5N8 strain of avian influenza in humans.

Russia told the World Health Organization that the virus is not yet spreading among people, the country’s public health chief Anna Popova said on Saturday, Bloomberg reported. He said that all the farmworkers had odd cases and were recovered.

The strain was first reported in November, which was found between both chickens and wild birds in 15 Russian regions. It was not dangerous to humans before.

“It is not transmitted from one person to another,” Popova said. “But only time will tell how future mutations will allow it to overcome this obstacle.” He said that the world has a chance to respond in a timely manner to prepare for potential mutations and develop tests and vaccines for stress.

The Vector Institute of Siberia said on Saturday that it would begin testing humans and develop a vaccine against H5N8, the RIA news agency reported.

Vaccination of chickens is awaited against bird flu on 11 March 2006 in Basti Peredovoi, 62 miles from the southern city of Stavropol, Russia.
Vaccination of chickens is awaited against bird flu on 11 March 2006 in Basti Peredovoi, 62 miles from the southern city of Stavropol, Russia.
REUTERS / Eduard Kornienko / File photo

The WHO admitted that it received information from Russia. “We are in discussion with national authorities to gather more information and assess the public health of the incident,” the organization said in an email. To Reuters.

H5N8 has also been found in France, where hundreds of thousands of birds were slaughtered last month to stop the spread. It was also behind the bird flu outbreak in Japan in records at the end of 2020, and has been found in China, the Middle East and North Africa in recent months, but so far only in poultry.

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