Saturday, November 29, 2008

France discovers 300 tons of contaminated Chinese soymeal



AFP, Rennes

Almost 300 tons of soymeal from China, used to feed organic poultry in western France, were taken off the market on Friday after testing positive for a toxic chemical, an import company said.
The soymeal contained melamine-the chemical at the heart of a scandal in China over contaminated milk -- 50 times over the recommended limit.
"One of the three imported batches, was carrying 116mg/kg of melamine, while the average should be 2,5 grammes. All foodstuffs made from the same materials were taken off the market at the beginning of November," Christophe Carousse from the French farm cooperative told AFP.
Other untested batches where delivered to some 127 organic farms in the Loire region in western France. "Tests on meat, pork and egg-laying chickens show there is no danger to public health. Unlike dioxin, melamine does not build up in the body. There is no way of catching it through the food chain," veterinary expert Frederic Andre told AFP.
In the wake of the discovery, French Health Minister Roselyne Bachelot scheduled health security talks for Wednesday. They will focus on the quality of products imported into France, in particular those from China.
Deliveries from China have been subjected to rigorous tests since the EU issued an alert last October recommending countries tighten controls on produce from China. The scandal is the latest to rock China's food industry, which has been tarnished by a series of health scares over dangerous products in recent years.
In September, baby milk powder contaminated with melamine killed four babies in China. Tens of thousands of infants fell ill in a health scare that prompted a nationwide investigation into the extent of the problem.
Melamine, which is used for making plastics and glues, was blamed for causing kidney stones in the affected babies, a condition normally rare in infants, but which gives rise to a range of health risks.

Orissa restriction on purchasing chicken from other states

Saturday, November 29, 2008 19:37 IST
BHUBANESWAR: With the beginning of culling operations in bird flu-hit Assam, Orissa government on Saturday asked district collectors of the border districts to ban tranportation of chicken and other poultry items from neighbouring states, official sources said.

The instruction was issued by the Fisheries and Animal Resource development department secretary to the concerned officials as part of the state's preparedness to meet the possible outbreak of avian flu.

Though there was no report of bird flu being reported from any part of the state, the government asked the transport commissioner to set up special squad to keep a tab on the movement of poultry items from other states.

The government had also asked the district level veterinary authorities to ensure immunisation of poultry and formation of quick response teams so that they could immediately intervene, if required.

The government also decided to set up a state-level squad to monitor the development in others states.

Though bird flu broke out in neighbouring West Bengal last year, Orissa had remained unaffected.

Be careful! The egg of Selundupan Malaysia Laporan:

Saturday, 29-11-2008
Pontianak, BPOST - the Egg in large quantities from Malaysia it was estimated was smuggled to Indonesia. The egg it was warned had a quality very low and serious bird flu, the foot-and-mouth disease as well as the virus of the animal illness were dangerous from the Jiran Country. The "egg was the media most was easy to put the dangerous virus of the animal illness."
His method was enough by being injected in this egg, the Kehewanan Service headword and Livestock Breeding (Diswanak) West Kalimantan Abdul Manaf Mustafa when being contacted in Pontianak, on Saturday (29/11). Admitted by Manaf, last Thursday November 27 he received existence information of the truck that carried the egg totalling 5 ton from Sarawak in the Sanggau Regency. He afterwards contacted the side District Police Sanggau to report that so as the truck was afterwards caught by the official. Was said Manaf, the perpetrators wanted to take the profit from the smuggling without thinking about the social impact that will be dealt with West Kalimantan on the whole. "Eggs that are put from Sarawak, usually only C classes or D that" his age already 3 weeks more." His quality was then low so as easy rotten, said Manaf.
He did not ignore the circulation of the egg from Sarawak still many in the border region like the Entikong Subdistrict. The amount not many, around dozens of items then. However, continued he, if has reached by the ton, certainly had the side that became the main perpetrators. Moreover the smuggling did not go through the short cut, but the official door went out entered Indonesia-Malaysia in Entikong. "Although for the animal product, did not see the amount many or a little, but how the quality" of "his security, was guaranteed for the health" of "humankind or not," stressed he.
West Kalimantan since the beginning 2007 proposed to the Agriculture Minister to maintain the border as the free area of bird flu in accordance with the condition from the Kesehatan Body of the Internasional Animal. Livestock breeding could be in West Kalimantan infected by bird flu in January till May 2004. Afterwards, was not found again by the case. "If weak law enforcement, West Kalimantan efforts so that free from bird flu and the dangerous animal illness other will be in vain," said Manaf while warned, the problem of the smuggling including General's priority in Pol Bambang Hendarso Danuri since to Chief Police of Republic of Indonesia.

ProMed: Highly pathogenic avian influenza, India

Highly pathogenic avian influenza, India
----------------------------------------
Information received on 28 Nov 2008 from Dr Natarajan Gokulram,
Secretary to the Government of India, Department of Animal Husbandry,
Dairying and Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture, New Delhi, India

Summary
Report type: Immediate notification
Start date 21 Nov 2008
Date of first confirmation of the event 27 Nov 2008
Report date 28 Nov 2008
Date submitted to OIE 28 Nov 2008
Reason for notification: Reoccurrence of a listed disease
Date of previous occurrence: November 2008
Causal agent: Highly pathogenic avian influenza virus
Serotype H5N1
Nature of diagnosis: Laboratory (basic), Laboratory (advanced)
This event pertains to a defined zone within the country

New outbreaks
Summary of outbreaks Total outbreaks: 1
Outbreak Location : ASSAM (Hajo, Rajabazar, Kamrup)
Affected population: backyard poultry mainly in a small village

(more)

Species Birds#
Susceptible 391
Cases 324
Deaths 324
Destroyed
Slaughtered

Outbreak statistics
Species Birds#
Apparent morbidity rate 82.86 percent
Apparent mortality rate 82.86 percent
Apparent case fatality rate 100.00 percent
Proportion susceptible animals lost* , *** Removed from the
susceptible population through death, destruction and/or slaughter
** Not calculated because of missing information

Epidemiology: Source of the outbreak(s) or origin of infection -
Unknown or inconclusive

Epidemiological comments: Epidemiological investigation is ongoing.
Stamping out of all domestic poultry is being applied in an
approximately 5-km-radius zone around the outbreaks followed by
compensation of the owners. An intensive surveillance campaign has
been launched in a 10-km-radius zone including: closure of poultry
markets and prohibition on sale and transportation of poultry
products in the infected zone; disinfection of premises after culling
and sealing of premises where appropriate. Restocking will be applied
in accordance with a specific protocol.

Laboratory name and type: High Security Animal Disease Laboratory,
Bhopal (National laboratory)
Species Birds#
Test real-time PCR
Test date 27 Nov 2008
Result Positive

Species Birds#
Test reverse transcription - polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR)
Test date 27 Nov 2008
Result Positive

Species Birds#
Test virus isolation
Test date 27 Nov 2008
Result Positive

Future Reporting
The event is continuing. Weekly follow-up reports will be submitted.

[# news reports indicate these were chickens and ducks. - Mod.JW]

--
Communicated by:
ProMED-mail


[In January 2008, there were 42 outbreaks in the province of West
Bengal, which like Assam is also located in Northeastern India. The
country of Bangladesh separates the Indian provinces of West Bengal
and Assam. The last outbreaks in West Bengal were resolved in April
2008 and subsequent OIE reports in July and October 2008 indicated no
new outbreaks in the country.

A very nice analysis tool provided by OIE graphs the HPAI outbreaks
in India by month for the last 3 years. A quick look indicates that 7
outbreaks occurred between January and April in 2006. The only
outbreak in 2007 occurred in July. Thus, the pattern of
outbreaks,while not strictly seasonal, tends to occur in the winter
months. Admittedly, the data are not sufficient to identify a
seasonal causality but there does seem to be a grouping in the winter
months. A similar pattern exist in Nigeria when the January to April
months register most of the outbreaks in 2006, although the number of
outbreaks there has been greatly reduced in 2008.

However, when thinking about seasonal effects it is important to
remember that there may be many risk factors for disease which vary
by times of the year, including animal and human movements for
commerce, holiday celebrations, wild bird migrations etc. This is a
very interesting aspect of the epidemiology of HPAI and as more data
collects, should be examined closely. For OIE - WAHID graph of
disease by month over specified time periods see:
.
Fill in the Country box with "India".

The location of these new outbreaks is in Kamrup district, Assam and
can be seen at
.
- Mod.PC]

Measuring preparedness for infectious diseases

Written by SPC
Monday, 24 November 2008 14:44

The Pacific Avian and Pandemic Influenza Taskforce (PAPITaF) meet in Nadi, Fiji, from today to discuss the state of preparedness for outbreaks of infectious diseases.

“Preparedness for avian and pandemic influenza will help the Pacific Island countries and territories (PICTs) to control other emerging scourges like severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) as well as controlling current epidemics like dengue fever,” says Dr Tom Kiedrzynski, Epidemiologist at the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

A one-day workshop on dengue fever will be held on Thursday 27 November following the three-day regional forum on avian and pandemic influenza preparedness.
According to Dr Ken Cokanasiga, Animal Health and Production Adviser at SPC, “PICTs are still vulnerable to the introduction of the deadly bird flu H5N1 virus which is persisting in many countries in the world.”
They include countries close to the Pacific Island region, such as Indonesia.

“The threat of an influenza pandemic is persisting but PICTs are now facing the beginning of a new regional dengue pandemic and this is an obvious priority—scarce resources need to be used wisely,” adds Dr Kiedrzynski.
(more)
Over 80 animal and human health senior officers and disaster management representatives from 21 PICTs and several international/regional organisations are gathered for the PAPITaF meeting.


They will assess progress since the first meeting of the taskforce in March last year.
The meeting will address practical measures that PICTs can apply to manage the risk of bird flu and an influenza pandemic.
It will also focus on broader policy considerations on issues such as travel restrictions (including border closure), regional travel arrangements, trade maintenance, compensation funding mechanisms and early detection of disease agents in animals that are infectious to humans.


Animal health specialists will also convene following the three-day workshop to discuss a range of issues specific to improving regional response capacity for emergency animal diseases that may threaten not only food security but also human lives.
Given the current dengue (DEN-4) resurgence in the Pacific Island region, SPC and the World Health Organization (WHO) will take the opportunity to use the gathering of regional expertise for the PAPITaF meeting to address some of the dengue-related issues with the country representatives.


Capacity development in avian and pandemic influenza preparedness benefits epidemic preparedness in general and can be tailored to better control dengue fever and other communicable diseases.

Philippines-DA sets up avian influenza diagnostic laboratory

November 30, 2008 issue

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) has set up a Regional Avian Influenza Diagnostic Laboratory (RAIDL) in Zamboanga City that would serve as a control center for the dreaded avian influenza virus or avian flu, commonly known as bird flu.

DA Regional Director Oscar Parawan said the RAIDL was inaugurated Thursday at the department's regional office with Assistant Secretary Dennis Araullo in attendance.

Parawan said the inauguration was followed by a workshop on Avian Influenza Protection Program (AIPP) that includes update on Avian Influenza Global Status and AIPP.

He said the participating local government units (LGUs) also presented their respective work plans.

He said the RAIDL would enable his office to determine the presence of avian influenza in this city in particular and the region in general.

He cited the importance of the RAIDL since Zamboanga City and the other parts of the region is the home to thousands of migratory birds due to the region's vast wetlands.

He noted that Zamboanga City, in particular, serves as the resting place for swallows where the kind of bird could be seen by the thousands at night time sleeping on electric cables in downtown areas.

The swallows usually flock to this city just after sundown and are leaving before daybreak.

Assam bird flu due to migratory birds: Ramadoss

Health Saturday, November 29, 2008

  • By Prashant K. Nanda. Tamil Nadu, India, 03:00 PM IST

Migratory birds are behind the fresh outbreak of bird flu in Assam, Indian Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss said Saturday, adding that culling operations had started in the northeastern state and 'inter-country bird movements are under close scrutiny'.

'Yes, we are concerned and this new outbreak is mainly due to migratory birds,' Ramadoss told IANS.

'We are taking measures to control it, and let me assure that everything is under control. A team from the central health ministry has already gone to Assam and is helping authorities there,' he added.

The minister said he has been keeping a close eye on the development and was closely monitoring the situation along with the animal husbandry department, which is under the central agricultural ministry.

He said all possible help would be provided to the state government in terms of human resource, medicine, masks and other preventive measures.

On Thursday, the outbreak of bird flu in Assam was confirmed after laboratory tests confirmed strains of the deadly H5N1 avian influenza. More than 300 birds died in the past week in Kamrup district of Assam.

'The culling operation has started and inter country bird movements are under close scrutiny,' the minister said, adding that the bird flu outbreaks in the past had helped India 'gain experience to handle such situation'.

Asked about the frequent bird flu outbreaks in India, Ramadoss said: 'Winter is a favourable period for the spread of bird flu. These migratory birds come southwards (to India) from other countries.'

While saying that there is 'no need to panic', he added that these 'migratory bird movements cannot be stopped completely'.

Meanwhile, authorities in Assam have culled over 12,000 of the estimated 60,000 birds to be killed.

The culling of ducks and chicken is being carried out in 48 villages within a 5 km radius of village Thakurchuba in Kamrup district, about 40 km west of Assam's main city of Guwahati.

About 20 Rapid Response Teams, each comprising about seven personnel including a veterinarian, are engaged in the culling that is expected to continue for about a week until the entire area is sanitized.

India has witnessed several outbreaks of bird flu earlier in states like Maharashtra, West Bengal and a few northeastern states.

India has been pointing fingers at Bangladesh and Thailand for the spread of the disease.

Addendum: Dengue Meeting, November 27th to the Pacific Avian and Pandemic Influenza Taskforce Meeting of September 29, 2008

Announcement of the 2nd Pacific Avian and Pandemic Influenza Taskforce Meeting (PAPITaF) of 29 September 2008

Addendum and Erratum
Addendum
DENGUE MEETING DAY, 27 NOVEMBER

BACKGROUND

1. Since the seventies, Dengue is a recurrent problem in the region: regional epidemics occur every 5-10 years, with significant morbidity and some mortality. It has economic consequences given the high number of cases it affects and the potential negative impact it has on tourism.

2. SPC, implementing the Pacific Regional Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Project (PRIPPP) and organising the PAPITaF meeting, sees avian and pandemic influenza preparedness as a point of entry for broader epidemic preparedness. Capacity development in avian and pandemic influenza preparedness benefits epidemic preparedness in general, and can be tailored to better control dengue (e.g. organizing surveillance and response, social mobilization, taking multisectoral approaches, legal frameworks for response, surge capacity, training).

3. Therefore, given the current dengue (DEN-4) resurgence in the region, in consultation with WHO, SPC & WHO will take the opportunity to use the gathering of regional expertise for the PAPITaF meeting to address some of the dengue-related issues with the country representatives. Consequently the PAPITAF meeting will be followed by an extra day of meetings on dengue on November 27, 2008.


OBJECTIVES

4. The objectives of the one-day meeting on dengue will be as follows:
Within the framework of the Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network (PPHSN):

I. To review current knowledge of epidemiology and public health impact of dengue and
vector-control measures and identify possible knowledge gaps for dengue control that may need operational research specific to the Pacific Islands (for example the use of biological control methods)

II. In the perspective of the current DEN-4 threat, to provide advocacy for effective dengue control and to share and discuss successful dengue control experiences and strategies that can be adapted by PICTs where appropriate.

III. To identify training needs for vector control and clinical management and the way forward so that existing training programmes could help addressing address them.

IV. To ensure capacity building activities undertaken to improve preparedness for avian and pandemic influenza are also useful for dengue and other epidemic disease surveillance and control.

V. To discuss and make clear current procedures for external laboratory confirmation including serotyping and update participants on the role and availability of dengue rapid diagnostic tests.

VI. To discuss aspects of the regional dengue strategy, and, in particular, the private sector component in the context of the Pacific Islands, and contribute to the preparation of a regional dengue vector surveillance and control project.

PARTICIPATION

5. As stated in the original announcement, technical discussions for both animal health and human health representatives were expected to be held following the meeting of the Taskforce. The extra day on dengue on 27 November will be for PICT senior officer from the Ministry of Health and/or the officer responsible for the National Disaster Management Office (or equivalent) who will be participating in the PAPITaF meeting. Officers from the Ministry of Agriculture participating in the PAPITaF meeting are not expected to participate in the dengue day but will have another separate meeting at the same time.

6. PICTs are requested to bring with them information on a recent dengue outbreak—especially if they had one this year—, on dengue control or/and prevention activities they have implemented and an analysis of what they found worked well and didn’t work well when they faced a dengue outbreak or implemented dengue control activities this year. This will feed into the discussions on dengue control (objective II).

7. For financial support available for the attendance of the PICT representatives, please refer to the original announcement. Officers participating in the dengue meeting will have their stay in Fiji planned accordingly and will be provided a perdiem as described in the original announcement, with accommodation at the Tanoa International Hotel, Nadi.

8. We also invite other representatives from non-PICT agencies and Pacific regional organisations to take advantage of this opportunity to contribute to discussions on dengue preparedness and control; however due to funding limitations, SPC regrets it is unable to sponsor these delegates.

9. Members of the PPHSN Coordinating Body (CB) are invited to both meetings (PAPITaF and dengue), as additional participants if necessary. Representatives from PPHSN-CB core members (PICTs) will be provided with support from SPC for their airfare, perdiem and accommodation according to standard SPC practice (please refer to original announcement for details). As is usual, representatives from PPHSN-CB allied members will be requested to organise their own airfare, perdiem and accommodation. SPC will provide support with accommodation booking.

10. For any other information, please refer to the original announcement, or contact:
-snip-

Erratum
In the announcement of the 2nd Pacific Avian and Pandemic Influenza Taskforce Meeting (PAPITaF)
dated 29 September 2008, on page 1, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) should
replace United Nations Disaster Plan (UNDP).
Our apologies for this error.

Thai airport protesters defy order to leave, face off with police

BANGKOK: Defiant protesters ignored orders to leave Bangkok's besieged airports and faced off with Thai police on Saturday, raising fears of clashes as crippling anti-government demonstrations escalated.

-snip-Tensions mounted with Thai television showing angry demonstrators arguing with police on a road to the main Suvarnabhumi airport as officers tried to set up a checkpoint to stop more people flocking to the protest site.

Despite Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat's declaration of emergency rule at the airports on Wednesday, protesters trying to topple his elected government remain entrenched, barricading themselves in with barbed wire and tyres.

"If we have to die today, I am willing to die. This is a fight for dignity," said Sondhi Limthongkul, the founder of the People's Alliance for Democracy protest movement, said on his private television station.

Police said they had given formal warnings overnight to protesters at both Suvarnabhumi international airport and the smaller, domestic Don Mueang airport to leave immediately or face action to evict them.

"Police have already issued two warnings since last night (Friday) to ask them to leave," Major General Piya Sorntrakoon, deputy commander of Thailand's central region, told AFP.

At Suvarnabhumi, demonstrators headed inside as rumours of a police raid circulated. Protesters set up a medical corner to treat anyone injured if clashes broke out, while water and other supplies were stacked up.

Some women carried pink helmets, readying themselves for any action. Children are also among the crowd.

Suvarnabhumi has been shuttered since late Tuesday, and every day the siege continues, 30,000 more passengers miss flights and the kingdom loses US$7 million in tourism revenue, ministers and officials have said.

The army chief has said he does not want to remove the protesters for fear of bloody clashes, and on Wednesday urged Somchai to dissolve parliament and hold new elections - calls the premier promptly rejected.

In signs of further rifts between the government and security forces, Somchai on Friday removed national police chief General Patcharawat Wongsuwan, as police failed to take action after the emergency rule order.

The protesters are calling for the resignation of the government elected in December, saying it is running Thailand on behalf of former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a coup in 2006 and is banned from politics.

The government said it tried to start negotiations with the PAD, but protest leaders have so far rebuffed the overtures, and say they will stay remain at the airports until the resignation of Somchai - Thaksin's brother-in-law.

A police officer estimated Saturday that 3,000 protesters were camped out at Suvarnabhumi, about 1,000 were at Don Mueang, and only 700 remained at the premier's Government House offices.

Numbers are expected to swell over the weekend.

The PAD, a loose coalition with the backing of elements in the military, the palace and the urban middle classes, began its campaign in late May.

Protests have steadily escalated, with the PAD seizing Government House in late August. On October 7, two protesters were killed and 500 people injured as PAD supporters and police clashed outside parliament.

The leaders called for a "final battle" against the government on Sunday and have since caused the biggest disruption since the anti-Thaksin coup, although their airport-blocking tactics have alienated some supporters.


Government spokesman Suparat Nakbunnam has said Somchai will remain in the northern city of Chiang Mai indefinitely, a pro-government stronghold, "as there are still uncertainties in the tensions between the government and army."

Bangkok airport to stay shut two more days

Posted: 29 November 2008 1818 hrs

BANGKOK: Thailand's main international airport will officially remain closed for another two days, airport authorities said Saturday, as protesters continued to occupy the building.
-snip-

Anti-government demonstrators occupied Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok on Tuesday and the domestic Don Muang airport was closed on Thursday, stranding tens of thousands of travellers.

Despite the declaration of a state of emergency at both sites by embattled Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat, police have failed to act against the protesters amid fears of violence.

"The People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) group is still occupying the area in front of the Suvarnabhumi airport passenger building with no sign of dissolving," airport director Saereerat Prasutanont said in a statement.


"The airport, therefore, has to declare there will be no flights in or out for a further 48 hours until 6.00 pm (1100 GMT) on December 1," he said.

The PAD protesters have vowed not to leave until the resignation of the government that was elected last December.

Bird flu detected at Hajo in State

GUWAHATI, Nov 27—Dreaded bird flue has struck the State. Official circles here said that the Bhopal-based High Security Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (HSADL) confirmed this evening the outbreak of the disease among the domesticated fowls of Thakuria Chuba of Rajabazar village under Hajo Revenue Circles of Kamrup district. This is the first case of outbreak of the dreaded disease in the State, said the sources.

Reports of unusual death of fowls in the area started coming since November 21. Meanwhile, reports of unusual death of fowls have also been received from parts of Sarpara village of Palasbari in the same district. The State Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Department has already sent samples collected from the Palasbari birds to the HSADL, said the sources.
(more)

Samples collected from the Hajo area were sent to the HSADL on November 23 for confirmation. The experts of the Northeast Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (NERDDL) here collected the samples on November 21 and 22. The NERDDL also conducted preliminary tests on the samples collected on November 21.

The Directorate of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry here received reports of unusual death of domesticated birds from Thakuria Chuba, a locality inhabited by 25 families, on November 21. In the locality 87 fowls were reported dead on November 21. Of the birds, 62 were adult ones.

The next day, 66 birds were reported dead (48 adults), followed by 92 (56 adults) on November 23, 20 (12 adults) on November 24, 27 (19 adults) on November 25 and 32 (17 adults) on November 26. It is believed that at present there are around 100 fowls left in the locality, said the sources.

Now, since the HSADL has confirmed occurrence of the disease in Thakuria Chuba, culling operations will be taken up in an area of 5-km radius around the locality to create a bird-free zone so as to prevent spread of the disease to other areas, the sources said.

On the steps taken so far by the Directorate to prevent spread of the disease to other areas, sources said that immediately after receiving the information of the unusual death of the birds in the locality, a team of experts from the NERDDL headed by the in-charge of the Laboratory, rushed to the spot and took preventive measures and collected bio specimen and tested them at the NERDDL.

The experts collected morbid and sera samples from the area on November 22 and communicated the report of the development to the authorities concerned in the State and the Central Governments that day. The samples collected from the Hajo area were sent to the HSADL, Bhopal by special messenger with intimation to the Joint Commissioner (LHS) of the Central Government on November 23.

This was followed by the despatching of six Rapid Response Teams (RRTs) to the spot and necessary instructions were issued. The Department, in close association with the civil authorities, has been closely monitoring the overall situation in the area. The local people have also been made aware of the safe practices of poultry handling and proper disposal of the last remains of the dead birds.

On November 25, the Joint Commissioner (LHS) of the Union Government arrived at the city and held discussions with the departmental officers, State’s Veterinary Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners of both the Kamrup (Metro) and Kamrup districts. The Joint Commissioner also reviewed the situation on ground.

As per the direction of the Joint Commissioner (LHS), bio specimens from high mortality area were sent to the Pune-based National Institute of Virology by a special messenger and poultry population in the 0-5 km and 5-10 area around Thakuria Chuba were also calculated, said the sources.

Gombe wipes out bird flu

Gombe state government has wiped out bird flu in the state.

The information desk officer of the state bird flu, committee, Mr. Kassim Toro made the claim in an interview with the Daily Champion in Gombe.

He said that it was the prompt response of the state government which purchased drugs used in fumigating the entire area that prevented a possible outbreak of bird flu in the state.

According to him, reports reaching him had earlier showed that over three months ago, a man from BCGA area of Gombe bought some ducks from the popular Dadin Kowa Market and that the ducks were traced to the Bayo market, Bornu state.

He said as soon as the ducks landed in Gombe, hundreds of other chickens, guinea fowls and other flying birds caught up with the flu and within six hours, thousands were reported dead.

He said it took the intervention of the state government which ordered the fumigation of the Dadin Kowa Market and the entire farm and BCGA that the epidemic was put under control.

He added that the exercise also included Dadin Kowa Dam, one of the wetland areas of the country reported to be a stopping point for different kinds of birds especially from Europe, which fly to the area yearly.

"Experts have discovered that the particular specie of the bird flu found in Gombe was taken to National Vet nary Research Institute (NVRI) Vom, Plateau state where it was discovered that the virus was more deadly than the common HN51 bird flu," Toro said.

Birdflu kills 11 over past 4 years

Sat, 11/29/2008 11:27 AM The Archipelago

SEMARANG, C. Java: Eleven people died from bird flu between 2005 and November, 2008 in Central Java, an official said Thursday.

The head of the Central Java Health Agency's Environment Rehabilitation and Handling Unit, Djoko Mardijanto, said that the disease had widely spread in 10 regions in Central Java, including Semarang city, Magelang, Boyolali, Banjarnegara, Sukoharjo, Wonogiri, Grobogan, Kendal, Sragen and Semarang regencies.

According to the agency's data, there was one case of bird flu infecting a human in 2005. This increased to three cases in 2006, then five cases in 2007. 2008 has seen a decrease, with three cases detected as of November.

Six of the 12 victims died as they did not receive hospital for treatment in time. Djoko said that when they were finally admitted, they were in terrible condition and staff had to work hard to handle the fatal disease.

"Fifty percent of bird flu contaminations are caused by direct contact with poultry, while the other 50 percent is related to unhealthy environments," Djoko said, adding that the agency had distributed tamiflu, guide books on handling the disease and specially trained medical staff to clinics and hospital to help cope with any new cases.

12,000 birds culled in Assam after bird flu outbreak

Guwahati, Nov 29 : Authorities in Assam have culled some 12,000 of the estimated 60,000 birds ordered to be killed after an outbreak of the deadly bird flu virus in the region, officials said Saturday.



Culling operations are on in the district of Kamrup since Friday and so far about 12,000 chickens and ducks were killed, Manoranjan Choudhury, deputy director of Assam's veterinary department, told IANS.

The culling is being carried out in 48 villages within a five kilometre radius of village Thakurchuba in Kamrup district, about 40 km west of Assam's main city of Guwahati.

The poultry targeted includes ducks and chickens. About 20 Rapid Response Teams comprising about seven personnel, including a veterinarian, are engaged in the operation that is expected to continue for about a week until the entire area is depopulated of the estimated 60,000 poultry, Parthajyoti Gogoi, a central health ministry official said.

The Indian health ministry Thursday confirmed the outbreak of bird flu after laboratory tests confirmed strains of the deadly H5N1 avian influenza. More than 300 birds died in the past one week in the area. Assam's veterinary and animal husbandry department has sounded an alert and is maintaining strict surveillance on farms in the state with veterinarians carrying out checks on all poultry.

A central health ministry team is also assisting the local authorities in the culling operations. We have taken all precautionary health measures as well in the area to ensure than humans are not affected, Gogoi said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) fears that the H5N1 strain could mutate into a form easily transmitted between humans and spark a deadly pandemic. Sale and purchase of poultry in the area was banned.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Recombinomics Re: Tamiflu Resistance

You can find all of these commentaries on the subject, that were written in the past week, at the site.

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance Clade Exchanges in Hawaii? (11/28/08 19:02)

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance Increases in Hong Kong (11/28/08 14:58)

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance Levels in US Raise Concerns (11/27/08 16:58)

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance in England Approaches 100% (11/27/08 12:40)

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance in United States Near 100% (11/27/08 10:55)

The Emergence and Dominance of N1 Tamiflu Resistance (11/24/08 21:15)

United States Reports H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance (11/22/08 14:30)

100% H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance in Scotland (11/21/08 15:45)

H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance in England Exceeds 92% (11/20/08 18:05)

All of Central Java endemic Burung Flu

An official statement on interpreting AI/dengue symptoms as AI rather than dengue.

28/11/08

Semarang -- from 35 regencies/the available city in Central Java, completely was stated endemic bird flu. "However, endemic him to the poultry, not bird flu to humankind," said Joko Mardiyanto, Kepala Seksi the Protection and the Prevention of the Illness, Dinas Kesehatan Central Java, yesterday.

This condition, according to him, could be understood. Central Java was the area of the producer of the biggest poultry in Indonesia. The "spread" of the "bird flu virus to the poultry was also very fast."

Whereas bird flu to humankind since 2005 now in Central Java is recorded by 12 cases. Although the figure was classified as small, Joko asked the community to be on the alert. "From 12 bird flu patients, 11 including dying," he said.

The case of the death of the patient who it was suspected contracted last bird flu happened two last week in Semarang.

To avoid became an epidemic him bird flu to humankind, the Kesehatan Service appealed to all the officials of the health to guard against the sign of this illness. "If having the person" of the "fever and hot high, should be not guarded against by dengue fever, but must be on the alert bird flu," he added.

Apart from continuing to carry out counselling of the bird flu danger, as anticipation, the government supplemented each community health centre with at least 10 packages of bird flu medicine. Officially Kesehatan Central Java also indicated several reconciliation hospitals for the bird flu sufferer, among them the Pusat Karyadi Public Hospital (Semarang), RS Muwardi (Solo), RS Margono (Purwokerto), and RS Kardinah (Tegal).

Whereas for the poultry, the government carried out spraying disinfektan in the poultry markets and the settlement. As for the control in livestock breeding to tangung answered the breeder.

Suharno, one of the businessmen of the business of the piece chicken in Kedungpane, Mijen, Semarang, confirmed his fast news the spreading of the virus. "As anticipation, daily we must carry out spraying disinfektan to the pen and the chicken abattoir," he said.


hattip Helblindi

Bird flu outbreak in Assam, culling operations begin

Guwahati, November 29, 2008
The Assam government on Friday confirmed the outbreak of Bird Flu at Hajo in Kamrup (rural) district and has started the culling operation. Hajo is 45 km away from the state capital.

The Kamrup district administration and State Veterinary College acted as soon as reports of unnatural death of 324 poultry, since November 21, came in from Thakuria Chuba of Rajabazar village under Hajo revenue circle.

Samples of dead birds have been sent to Bhopal-based High Security Animal Diagnostic Laboratory (HSADL). HSALD has confirmed the presence of the deadly virus.

Deputy Commissioner of Kamrup (Rural), R.C. Jain said the district administration has banned the sale of poultry and sounded a general health alert in 20 villages under the Hajo revenue circle.

“Today we have started the culling operation. Altogether 20 villages would be covered under the operation,” said Jain. He added that the poultry farmers whose fowls were culled would get compensation.

Similar cases of death of domesticated fowls have been reported from Sarpara village under Palasbari revenue circle in the district.

Meghalaya on alert

After Assam’s declaration, Meghalaya on Friday sounded an alert to prevent outbreak of the disease in the state. State’s veterinary officials had a meeting to assess the preparedness and adopt measures to prevent the disease from spreading to the state.

About 30,000 poultry to be culled in Assam

Guwahati, Nov 28: About 30,000 chickens and ducks will be culled in Assam during the next four days as an outbreak of bird flu in poultry has been reported in the state, an official said.

"The entire culling process is expected to be completed in three to four days as our teams are visiting each and every household in the area. We estimate there could be some 30,000 poultry birds in the area where culling is currently underway," said Manoranjan Choudhury, deputy director of the Assam veterinary department.
(read more)

The Indian health ministry Thursday confirmed outbreak of bird flu after laboratory tests confirmed strains of the deadly H5N1 avian influenza. Sale and purchase of poultry has been banned in the state.

Choudhury said about 30,000 chickens and ducks would be slaughtered in about 40 villages of Thakurichuba village, about 40 km west of Guwahati. The veterinary personnel involved in the culling process were being administered the antiviral drug Tamiflu as a precautionary measure.

"The process of culling has already started involving about 20 Rapid Response Teams with seven members in each group led by a veterinarian," he said.

More than 300 birds died in the past one week in the state. Assam's veterinary and animal husbandry department sounded an alert and is maintaining a strict surveillance on farms in the state.

Suspected bird flu outbreak in Assam

Rangiya (Assam), PTI:

As a preventive measure, more than 500 birds have been culled and a medical team rushed there to check if any human being was affected, sources said.

Sale of poultry has been banned and prohibitory orders imposed in the fear of suspected bird flu outbreak in Hajo of Kamrup (Rural) district in Assam.

As a preventive measure, more than 500 birds have been culled and a medical team rushed there to check if any human being was affected, sources said.

Blood samples of affected birds were sent for analysis to a specialised institute in Pune.

Official sources said, chickens and ducks from the area near Guwahati had shown symptoms of bird flu attack.

The symptoms of bird flu - listlessness and limpness of birds - noticed among poultry have prompted the administration to impose prohibitory orders under section 144 of CrPC.

However, prohibitory measures were not taken in neighbouring Kamrup (Metro) district where Guwahati is located. No report of poultry showing signs of bird-flu was reported from this place, sources added.

India reports outbreak of bird flu in northeast

Updated at: 0850 PST, Friday, November 28, 2008

GUWAHATI: Authorities in India's northeastern state of Assam have ordered culling thousands of chicken and ducks after a fresh outbreak of bird flu in poultry was detected late on Thursday, a senior official said.

"We were informed that the samples sent to laboratories in Bhopal and Pune have been tested positive. So we have ordered for culling in the area, which will start today," R. C. Jain, a senior state government official said on Friday.

"It is H5N1 stain," he said in Guwahati, the region's biggest city. More than 30,000 chickens and ducks would be slaughtered in next three days in 20 villages, after one of them was hit by bird flu, officials said.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

United States of America overall
Advice is current for Friday, 28 November 2008.

This advice has been reviewed and reissued. It contains new information in the Summary and under Safety and Security: Terrorism (update). The overall level of the advice has not changed. Summary •We advise you to exercise caution and monitor developments that might affect your safety in the United States because of the risk of terrorism.

•Pay close attention to your personal security and monitor the media for information about possible new safety or security risks. •The United States Department of Homeland Security's Advisory System Threat Level is at Orange for all domestic and international flights, indicating a "high" risk of terrorist attack. It is at Yellow or "elevated" for all other sectors, indicating a significant risk of terrorist attack. •On 26 November 2008, US media reported that security measures have been stepped up in subways and mass-transit stations following unsubstantiated reports that terrorists are planning attacks on New York’s transit system. •

WHO Bantu Makassar Tanggulangi Flu Burung

On Thursday, 27-11-2008
MAKASSAR, Upeks -- the Case of bird flu increasingly spread then. The Makassar Municipal Government made an effort to anticipate the spread of this deadly illness, at first for the case of the spread through humankind to humankind. Several cases of bird flu that happened in Indonesia brought the special concern in various circles, including World Health Organitation (WHO) and helped Indonesia in the control of this virus.
The Sub Bagian Pemberitaan head of Makassar public relations, H Pagar of Nature, to Upeks, on Wednesday (26/11), said, the shape of the WHO concern was packed in the form of technical help and the control fund of the virus H5N1.
In Makassar personally was centred on in the Makassar Subdistrict and the Panakkukang Subdistrict. The Makassar Municipal Government will in the future reinforce the control of the spreading of this virus in the matter of funding and human resources. The "main threat was the possibility" of the "occurrence" of the "Pandemic or the spread from humankind to humankind, that at this time only happened to the poultry to humankind," he revealed.
Take part in being present in the meeting of the co-ordination between the Municipal Government and WHO among them being the consultant WHO, Omai M. S, from the Department of the RI Health, Wahyu Sunadji. Only a picture of the case of bird flu the first time claimed the resident's Makassar casualties in 2006 then, where in 2004 then nationally was carried out by the extermination of the mass poultry around 4.7 million poultries that were expected terindikasi bird flu. Recorded since 2005 then at least 112 souls died from 137 cases in Indonesia. In the meantime was estimated if this virus experienced the pandemic then at least 500 thousand insiders a day will enter the hospital and 81% possibility happened the death to humankind when his condition was positive.

Terrorism (update). North-eastern states of Assam, Nagaland, Tripura and Manipur

Be alert to own security
Exercise caution
High degree of caution
Reconsider your need to travel
Do not travel
This advice has been reviewed and reissued. It contains new information in the Summary and under Safety and Security: The overall level of the advice has increased.
Summary
We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to India at this time because of the very high risk of terrorist activity by terrorists and militant groups.
If you do decide to travel to India, you should exercise extreme caution.
On 26 and 27 November 2008, a series of coordinated terrorist attacks were launched in Mumbai targeting a number of locations, including major hotels, restaurants, the railway station and near the domestic airport terminal. Reports indicate both gunfire and explosions were involved and hostages taken. The attacks have resulted in many people being killed and injured.
The Mumbai attacks show terrorists in India are deliberately targeting Westerners. Further attacks cannot be ruled out. These attacks could take place at any time, anywhere, including in places frequented by foreigners. You should take particular care to avoid places known to be terrorist targets. See the Terrorism section for details.
Australians should avoid travel to Mumbai at this time.
Australians in Mumbai should remain in a safe location, monitor the media for information about new safety and security risks and follow the advice of local authorities.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has set up a hotline for Australians with concerns for family or friends in Mumbai on 1800 002 214. Australians overseas requiring consular assistance should contact the Department Foreign Affairs and Trade on +61 2 6261 3305.
Reports indicate that services to Mumbai’s international and domestic airports have been disrupted. Australians should check with their airline on the status of their flights and the situation at these airports.
The arrest of a high-profile political figure on 21 October 2008 may cause violent protests and riots in Mumbai and elsewhere in Maharashtra.
Violent protests and demonstrations occur frequently throughout India. Australians are urged to avoid protests, and should monitor international and local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.
A series of explosions occurred in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam, including in the capital Guwahati on 30 October. Over 70 people were killed and hundreds injured.
Explosions occurred in Modasa Town, Gujurat and Malegeon, Maharashtra on 29 September. Reports indicate people were killed and dozens injured.
An explosion occurred in Mehrauli Flower Market (near Qutab Minar tomb) in South Delhi on 27 September 2008. One person was killed and over a dozen injured.
Five explosions occurred in New Delhi on the evening of 13 September 2008, resulting in 24 deaths and over 100 people injured.
Security has been tightened in all major cities across India. Further attacks cannot be ruled out.
You should be particularly vigilant in the lead up to and on days of national significance such as Republic Day (26 January) and Independence Day (15 August), as militants have in a number of past instances marked such occasions with attacks.
We advise you not to travel to the state of Jammu and Kashmir, other than to the Ladakh region via Manali, or by air to the regions main city of Leh, due to frequent armed clashes and terrorist activities.
We advise you not to travel in the immediate vicinity of the border with Pakistan, other than at the international border crossing at Wagah.
We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to the north-eastern states of Assam, Nagaland, Tripura and Manipur because of the risk of armed robbery, kidnapping, extortion and terrorism related incidents. If you do decide to travel to these areas, you should exercise extreme caution.

India Terror Attacks: Information Hotline

U.S. citizens concerned about the wellbeing of friends and family in India may call the following number for information:
1-888-407-4747
Travel Alert: India The Department of State warns U.S. citizens about heightened security concerns in India, and advises U.S. citizens traveling to or already in India to maintain a high level of vigilance and to take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. Travel Alert more
Travel Alert: ThailandContinuing large-scale political demonstrations in Thailand have resulted in the disruption of services as well as isolated incidents of violence. At this time, Bangkok’s international and domestic airports have ceased flight operations due to the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protests at those locations. Travel Alert

Widespread fear that Vietnam's food supply is unsafe

Hanoi - Fearing that foods imported after last month's floods are contaminated with toxic chemicals from China, consumers in Vietnam's capital are wondering just what is left that is safe to eat. "People here now are very worried about food safety as many vegetables, fruits and other foods in the market have no certificate of origin or safety," Tran Dang, the former director of the health ministry's Food Safety and Hygiene Department, said Thursday. "This is a health threat for the community."

Concerns over food safety follow last month's record high floods in northern Vietnam that submerged thousands of hectares of crops.

Nguyen Thi Ngoc Anh, a manager at the Long Bien market, one of the largest in Hanoi, said the amount of fresh fruit and vegetables now being imported from China has doubled in the past month. Chinese products comprise 60 per cent of what is for sale in the market.

"There are many vegetables and other food in the markets that are consumed every day and there's nothing to guarantee they are safe for human consumption," said Ho Tat Thang, deputy chairman the Vietnam Standards and Consumer Association.

In response to fears that imported vegetables are sprayed with chemicals to keep them fresh, the Vietnamese government began testing dozens of imported items from China. On Tuesday, health inspectors said that the six kinds of pesticides they detected were within acceptable levels.

But even a government health official remained suspicious.

"We can not confirm that those are totally healthy because China might have used substances that we don't know," said Trinh Cong Toan, a senior inspector in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Consumers are still nervous after several Vietnamese newspapers falsely reported that the World Health Organization had issued a warning last week stating that nearly a quarter of imported fruits in Vietnam's markets were contaminated with a toxic preservative.

Shelaye Boothey, WHO's press officer in Hanoi, said the international organization issued no such report and she chided the local Vietnamese press for continuing to report the inaccurate information.

Nevertheless, concerns persist.

Nguyen Tien Chi, who was out shopping for dinner with her 10-year-old daughter, said she worried that everything for sale in the market was potentially hazardous.

"It's hard nowadays," Chi said. "There is the foot-and-mouth disease with beef and pork. Bird flu with chicken. Melamine in eggs. And now vegetables are not safe too. What else can you eat?"

Food grown within Vietnam has no guarantee of safety. Indeed, Vietnamese farmers use fertilizers and pesticides on a massive scale as they push to get the maximum yield out of their plots of land.

"I bought a very fresh and good looking apple for my children," said Truong Thi Hao, a housewife who lives in Hanoi. "But when they went to eat it, it was rotten inside. They must use a chemical to preserve it and that's definitely not good."

All of Central Java endemic Burung Flu

Semarang -- from 35 regencies/the available city in Central Java, completely was stated endemic bird flu. "However, endemic him to the poultry, not bird flu to humankind," said Joko Mardiyanto, Kepala Seksi the Protection and the Prevention of the Illness, Dinas Kesehatan Central Java, yesterday.

This condition, according to him, could be understood. Central Java was the area of the producer of the biggest poultry in Indonesia. The "spread" of the "bird flu virus to the poultry was also very fast."

Whereas bird flu to humankind since 2005 now in Central Java is recorded by 12 cases. Although the figure was classified as small, Joko asked the community to be on the alert. "From 12 bird flu patients, 11 including dying," he said.

The case of the death of the patient who it was suspected contracted last bird flu happened two last week in Semarang.

To avoid became an epidemic him bird flu to humankind, the Kesehatan Service appealed to all the officials of the health to guard against the sign of this illness. "If having the person" of the "fever and hot high, should be not guarded against by dengue fever, but must be on the alert bird flu," he added.

Apart from continuing to carry out counselling of the bird flu danger, as anticipation, the government supplemented each community health centre with at least 10 packages of bird flu medicine. Officially Kesehatan Central Java also indicated several reconciliation hospitals for the bird flu sufferer, among them the Pusat Karyadi Public Hospital (Semarang), RS Muwardi (Solo), RS Margono (Purwokerto), and RS Kardinah (Tegal).

Whereas for the poultry, the government carried out spraying disinfektan in the poultry markets and the settlement. As for the control in livestock breeding to tangung answered the breeder.

Suharno, one of the businessmen of the business of the piece chicken in Kedungpane, Mijen, Semarang, confirmed his fast news the spreading of the virus. "As anticipation, daily we must carry out spraying disinfektan to the pen and the chicken abattoir," he said. SOHIRIN

hat-tip Shiloh

Modeling Drug Resistant Influenza

By Amesh A. Adalja, M.D., November 21, 2008

In a mathematical modeling study published in Virology Journal, Brockmann and colleagues report that drug resistant influenza was capable of increasing hospitalization rates by up to 233% in a hypothetical Swiss town of 100,000 inhabitants. Coupled with increased reports of drug-resistant virus, these findings have implications for hospital planning, infection control activities, and chemoprophylaxis strategies.1

Study Findings

Given the increasing prevalence of oseltamavir resistant influenza strains and the stockpiling of these agents for use in a future pandemic, the authors developed a mathematical model to assess the impact of this resistance. Parameters culled from prior studies and incorporated into their model include: a reproductive number (Ro) of 2.5; equivalent viral fitness of resistant and wild type virus; and the assumption that 1/3 of infected individuals are asymptomatic, 1/3 moderately sick, and 1/3 require medical help. The authors also incorporate the effects of antiviral treatment (for drug sensitive virus) and social distancing measures. Infection was introduced at day 0 and day 21 of the simulated outbreak.1
-snip-

The authors elaborate on the implications of their study by drawing attention to the fact that current H1N1 oseltamavir-resistant strains have already shown the ability to spread efficiently person-to-person, and their importation into a previously uninfected area where oseltamavir is the main countermeasure may create a substantial increase in hospital utilization. Physicians and hospital policy makers should account for these contingencies when undertaking planning for seasonal influenza and making decisions regarding resource allocation, infection control, and chemoprophylaxis/treatment. Additionally, H5N1 avian influenza viruses have exhibited various degrees of oseltamavir resistance without reduced fitness, and, if adaptation to humans occurs, its high propensity for severe disease could have a catastrophic effect on the healthcare system.1 More ominous still would be genetic reassortment between co-circulating seasonal and H5N1 viruses resulting in widespread oseltamavir resistance in H5N1.

Addressing both de novo resistance development (occurring in 4.1% of children and 0.32% of adults, based on results from prior studies illustrating higher replication in rates in children) and importation of drug resistant virus, the authors find that resistant strains could not only increase hospitalization rates but also outpatient sickness rates, which increased by 129% in their model. The importation of a resistant virus into an area without prior resistance was found to have a much greater effect on these rates than de novo resistance, with a 121% vs. 233% increase in hospitalization rates based on de novo resistance occurring late in a treatment course and rendering the virus unable to be transmitted efficiently.1

Given that the benefits of anti-viral treatment—ameliorating the course of illness, decreasing the likelihood of hospitalization, and attenuating viral spread—would not be realized in those infected with a drug-resistant virus, higher hospitalization rates could be anticipated given no available pharmaceutical recourse.1

Neuraminidase Inhibitor Resistance Increasing with No Cost in Fitness

As previously reported in the CBN, H1N1 influenza viruses increasingly have been identified as harboring a resistance mutation, H274Y, that confers non-susceptibility to the neuraminidase inhibitor oseltamavir by altering the neuraminidase binding site. In certain regions of the world, drug resistant virus accounts for 100% of the isolates, completely displacing wild-type virus.2,4 Strikingly, these viruses are propagated without the selection pressure engendered by utilization of oseltamavir—a sign that the accumulation of these mutations does not hamper, and may in fact enhance, the ability of the virus to replicate and infect fresh hosts.3

Implications for Hospital infection Control

The authors elaborate on the implications of their study by drawing attention to the fact that current H1N1 oseltamavir-resistant strains have already shown the ability to spread efficiently person-to-person, and their importation into a previously uninfected area where oseltamavir is the main countermeasure may create a substantial increase in hospital utilization. Physicians and hospital policy makers should account for these contingencies when undertaking planning for seasonal influenza and making decisions regarding resource allocation, infection control, and chemoprophylaxis/treatment. Additionally, H5N1 avian influenza viruses have exhibited various degrees of oseltamavir resistance without reduced fitness, and, if adaptation to humans occurs, its high propensity for severe disease could have a catastrophic effect on the healthcare system.1 More ominous still would be genetic reassortment between co-circulating seasonal and H5N1 viruses resulting in widespread oseltamavir resistance in H5N1.

References

1. Brockmann SO, Schwehm M, Duerr H, et al. Modeling the effects of drug resistant influenza virus in a pandemic. Virology Journal. 2008, 5:133; http://www.virologyj.com/content/pdf/1743-422X-5-133.pdf. Accessed November 6, 2008.
2. Sheu TG et al. Surveillance for neuraminidase inhibitor resistance among human influenza A and B viruses circulating worldwide in 2004-2008. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 2008;doi:10.1128/AAC.00555-08. http://aac.asm.org/cgi/reprint/AAC.00555-08v1?view=long&pmid=18625765. Accessed November 6, 2008.
3. Deyde VM, Okomo-Adhiambo M, Sheu TG, et al. Pyrosequencing as a tool to detect molecular markers of resistance to neuraminidase inhibitors in seasonal influenza A viruses. Antiviral Research. 2008. http://www.sciencedirect.com
/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T2H-4TMC2BR
-1&_user=88470&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&
view=c&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=88470&
md5=7040b699c8a94ef8ad8443190ff9ebc1.
Accessed November 6, 2008.
4. World Health Organization. Influenza A(H1N1) virus resistance to oseltamivir–2008 influenza season, southern hemisphere. August 20, 2008. http://www.who.int/csr/disease/influenza/H1N1webupdate20082008_kf.pdf. Accessed November 13, 2008.
hat-tip: AlohaOR

Indonesia requires drug firms to build plants

November 27, 2008

JAKARTA, Indonesia: Indonesia's health minister is confident foreign pharmaceutical companies will comply with new rules requiring them to build local factories, saying they would not risk being locked out of the country's $2 billion drug market.

"I don't think they'd dare leave," Siti Fadilah Supari said Thursday. "But if they do, it's their loss."


The decree, which was issued earlier this month, is designed to encourage the transfer of technology and to create jobs in the nation of 235 million. It says foreign drug makers will only be allowed to sell products if they build local production facilities. Critics say the rules could prevent some lifesaving medicine from being sold here.

But Supari said she was not worried, noting local and international drug companies that already have factories in Indonesia can import some medicine with "special access" licenses, ensuring that all domestic needs are met.

Foreign companies can't just act like retailers, opening tiny storefront offices to sell hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of drugs and then give nothing back, she said. "They have to invest, so our people can benefit too."

Currently, 13 foreign companies import and sell drugs through subsidiaries in Indonesia - but don't have factories in the country. They include Wyeth, Eli Lilly & Co., and Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp. of the United States; Servier and Sanofi-Aventis of France; and Astrazeneca PLC of the United Kingdom. They have two years to comply with the new regulations, Supari said.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue wrote a letter to Indonesia's president last week urging him to "to consider revising the decree so that foreign companies that already have subsidiaries in Indonesia are exempt and can continue selling medicines."

Supari is no stranger to controversy.

Last year, she stopped sharing her country's bird flu virus samples with the World Health Organization, arguing drug firms would use them to make vaccines that were ultimately unaffordable to her own people.

Critics said she was making it impossible for international health experts to see if the virus was mutating into a more dangerous form.

hat-tip Carol@SC

Bioterrorism: Global depression warning

Thursday, 27 Nov 2008 12:02

A lack of transnational cooperation on biosecurity and pandemic disease control could tip the world into the largest economic crisis of the last 100 years, a report said on Thursday.

The commission on national security from the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said bioterrorism or a serious disease outbreak could send the global economy from a "serious recession into a global depression".

The IPPR security commission, chaired by Lord George Robertson former defence secretary and secretary general of Nato, and Lord Paddy Ashdown, former leader of the Liberal Democrats and high representative to Bosnia, said global arrangements to prepare, detect and respond to bioterrorism or disease outbreaks are inadequate.

As unprecedented levels of global movement take place – spreading infectious diseases far more quickly – coupled with people living closer together than ever before and advances in bio-technology, the risk of global pandemics or bio-weapons falling into the wrong hands is at an all-time high, the commission says.

"Bio-security challenges must now be given the central prominence they deserve in today's security environment," said co-chairs Lord Robertson and Ashdown.

"Although our awareness of some of the vulnerabilities in this area is increasing, institutional adaptation, especially at the global level, is lagging far behind. It is imperative that we now treat this issue every bit as seriously as other, more traditional threats to security."

The commission is calling on greater cooperation between the UK government and international partners to shore up its bioterrorism capabilities as well as a major expansion in the production of important drugs and vaccines.

hat-tip Pixie

India: Days after India says it's clean, bird flu strikes Assam block

Amitav Ranjan Posted: Nov 27, 2008 at 0027 hrs IST

New Delhi: Almost a fortnight after India declared itself free of avian flu, preliminary reports have confirmed a fresh outbreak of the virus in Hajo block of Kamrup district in Assam where more than 200 poultry birds have died since last Saturday.

“Preliminary tests by the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory have indicated bird flu to be the reason behind the poultry deaths. The confirmatory test from the same lab is expected tomorrow. The outbreak will be declared once the report identifies the strain,” Government officials said today.

Once the outbreak of High Pathogenic Avian Influenza (H5N1) virus is notified, local health authorities would start culling within the five-km radius of the infected villages, numbered to be around 40. However, the Department of Animal Husbandry in the Agriculture Ministry has issued instructions to set up a control room.

After the last outbreak reported in Darjeeling in West Bengal in May, there were no further reports prompting the Centre to declare the country free of avian flu. Between January and May this year, 42 incidents of bird flu were reported from West Bengal and Tripura. Though the last reported case in Darjeeling was disinfected on June 4, the Government couldn't declare itself flu-free due to a sporadic incident of outbreak in Manipur in July.

After three months elapsed without any incident, the Department on November 4 reported to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) that surveillance in the infected areas showed no signs of the flu and hence it was declaring the country free of bird flu. The Department also informed the states of the new status but asked them not to be complacent in maintaining vigil against the disease.

According to sources, the cause of the flu in Assam was unclear as the affected sites are far from Bangladesh that is frequently affected by the virus. Moreover, the speed at which the birds were falling ill or dropping dead was a cause for concern, the sources said.

While the state government is claiming that 100 birds had died in the block area, unconfirmed reports put the number at 200, sources said.
hat-tip AlohaOR

11 from 12 Sufferers Died

Jumat, 28 November 2008 00:00

The community was asked to guard against the bird flu danger. Totalling 35 regencies/the city in Central Java all of them was endemic bird flu.

From 12 bird flu sufferers in Central Java since 2005 to November 2008, 11 including dying. Only one sufferer who recovered.

That was sent by Kasi Upaya Kesehatan of Reconciliation of Dinkes Central Java Dr Joko Mardiyanto in discussions guarded against Penyakit in the Hujan Season on floor 11 the Building of the Central Javan Provincial Government yesterday. He said, from this percentage, significant 90 percent more the bird flu sufferer died. ”Ini demanded vigilance. When suffered hot like flu, must be thought about as flu burung,” he said. He asked, the bird flu illness was also handled serious as in the case of dengue fever dengue fever (DBD). According to him, most bird flu sufferers not the person who was active in the world of livestock breeding. ”There are five cases that a victim the school child"

Ambon was Not Yet Free Rabies

[Here is another story that combines Rabies with bird flu...I wasn't going to post it, but considering the post below, from Shiloh, which talks mostly of rabies also, with a suspected case reported at the end, I decided to post it.]

map: http://tinyurl.com/62prm9
Kamis, 27 November 2008 08:12

Kapanlagi.com - the Dinas Kehutanan Target, Pertanian and Livestock Breeding (Dishutanak) the Ambon City, to make all the Ambon City territory to be free the rabies illness to the end of this 2008 evidently was not yet successful. The "target of Kota Ambon free rabies to the end of 2008 was not yet reached, was caused by the low level" of the "awareness" of the "community, especially the owner" of the "kept animal to bring the animal of the virus bearer especially the dog, the monkey and the cat to divaksin," said the Head of Dishutanak Kota Ambon, H. Latupeirissa, on Wednesday (26/11).
-snip-
In Ambon the animal of the bearer of the rabies virus like the cat and the monkey rarely was found, whereas his population's dog that was very big, because of his population continued to improve from the year to the year. The data that was owned by Dishutanak the Ambon city mentioned, the number of dogs in the Ambon city to the end of 2008 reached more than 15,000 tails. From the number, just around 9,000 tails that were vaccinated. Latupeirissa added, the rabies vaccination will free continue to be carried out till 2009 in order to releases the Ambon City from rabies, and early this coming December, Dishutanak the Ambon city, will come back carried out the vaccination of stage Rabies Ii during the budget year 2008.

The stage vaccination Ii, will be carried out by the operation penyisiran against dogs that could not be vaccinated in the I stage and will be done together all over the subdistrict. He hoped the owners of the dog could help the official to memvaksin their kept animal, because if the dog was vaccinated intensively while three years were endless automatically antibodies will towards the rabies virus be formed.

-snip-
"If his antibodies have been formed although being bitten by the rabies dog also would not tertular." For the owner of the dog that want to consume his meat must be waiting fastest a month and safe to be consumed, explained Latupeirissa. Along with the vaccination of stage rabies Ii, Dishutanak Kota Ambon also will do fogging bird flu all over the Ambon city territory by the fund that was provided through APBD Kota Ambon in 2008.

Team descends to Ungasan

Note: Scroll down the article for reference to suspect bird flu that was stated negative
Radar Bali
Thursday, November 27 2008
Pursued the Dog Wild
Today the Joint Team descends to Ungasan
-snip-

Meanwhile in Badung concentrate rabbies, in Denpasar suspect bird flu rose again. Annie Rai, 56, the resident ofPulau Ayu No.19 Denpasar it was suspected suffered bird flu. Yesterday afternoon struck 12,15 wita, he was forced to be run off with to RS Sanglah and underwent the maintenance of the isolation in the special ward tropic Nusa Indah RS Sanglah the room of the number 4.
Annie that could complain with the hot body was accompanied by the cough and pilek this was mentioned suffered bird flu. This assumption the reason immediately after being sick, near his house was found by the chicken died that was expected positive bird flu.
The secretary of the team of the control doctor of the bird flu patient of RS Sanglah, Dr Ken Wirasandi that it was confirmed the Balinese Radar the afternoon yesterday then confirmed that his side received the female patient who could be suspected by bird flu.

"We could receive information from the RS side private enterprise that they suspected the existence" of the "patient that indicated to the side of flu of burung,"jelas Ken."
Only results of the inspection were yesterday stated by the negative. However appropriate protap and the provisions of the handling of the patient who was suspected by bird flu, of Ken claimed not want to robbed. Annie that came to RS Sanglah at once underwent the isolation in the ward of Nusa Indah. By the team, the patient Anni then at once underwent the clinical inspection. The blood test, rapites, lakosit.
Results? Still according to Ken, results of the negative. Mentioned by him, the level of leucocyte pasin still in the normal stage namely 5300. Likewise with investigation from the patient's residence, Ken mentioned was not found by the existence of the clinical story that directed flu burung. (pre/fer)

hat-tip Shiloh [good catch Shiloh!!]

Outbreaks of Avian Influenza (subtype H5N1) in poultry. From the end of 2003 to 27 November 2008

Click on map

WHO Monitoring H5N1 In Makassar Indonesia

Commentary

WHO Monitoring H5N1 In Makassar Indonesia
Recombinomics Commentary 13:50
November 27, 2008

Two district in Makassar, each Panakkukang Makassar and now is under the monitoring of the World Health Organitation (WHO). Both these areas are considered prone to the spread of bird flu, as poultry traders into place.

This is revealed in the meeting between the Mayor, A Herry Iskandar consultant with the WHO, Omai M. Through Omai, the WHO expressed Makassar to help in tackling the spread of the bird flu virus.

The above translation describes interest by WHO regarding H5N1 in Makassar, the site of a 19 person cluster. Although official reports maintain that these patients were H5N1 negative, the first seven tested were PCR positive base on local lab tests, as were the dying poultry in the region.

Usually H5N1 in birds is monitored by FAO, while human cases are monitored by WHO. Although the above translation describes H5N1 in poultry, and media reports indicate that the recent and future flu simulations in patients in Makassar are unrelated to the large cluster, the direct involvement of WHO on monitoring H5N1 in the region is more reassuring that WHO announcements regarding the news blackout on human H5N1 cases in Indonesia.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Total Isolation

On Thursday, 27-11-2003
DEPARTEMAN the RI health planned to carry out the simulation of quarantine or the isolation of the pandemic territory in several districts in Makassar. The plan is, the simulation will be carried out in March next year. "Makassar was the umpteenth city from simulasiyang was carried out by us." Why was chosen by Makassar? Not only because of having the case of bird flu in this city, but also because in a manner the infrastructure and pastisipasi the community more was ready, obviously Tjandra.
Tjanra explained, the area of the pandemic will be isolated by the total. This area was closed for the human traffic and the animal. While the government had an obligation to supply food and various requirements to the inhabitants in this area. "The isolation will take place continued during still had the pandemic in this territory," he said. Further, the Department of Health co-operated officially the health of the city and the province will carry out territory data collection for the implementation of the simulation.

Sign Beginning of Bird Flu Like Influenza

27 November 2008

The beginning of this season of year rain in Central Java was marked by an incident that was not expected, that is the existence of casualties to die resulting from the infection of the bird flu virus on November 07 2008 in Medoho, Gayamsari, Semarang. The epidemic of the bird flu infection in humankind was begun during 2005, where 20 cases happening, 13 among them died. The number of cases and casualties died reached his peak during 2006, where being obtained by 55 cases, 45 among them died. All the efforts were mobilised to prevent the occurrence of new cases, so as in the following year his incident figure began to descend, but the new case that happened in Indonesia was still highest in the world was compared country-nagara other that also was attacked by the epidemic of bird flu. (saw the Table) the Table 1. The Cumulative number the Case Avian A/ influenza (H5N1) Humankind that was reported To WHO Up To September 10 2008

The infection Flu Burung Kejadian the bird flu illness to humankind, happened because of the entry of the virus of kind bird flu H5N1 to humankind through the respiratory tract. The virus H5N1 in fact was the kind of the influenza virus that attacked the poultry, but immediately infected humankind. This virus personally was the kind that was really unstable, had the variation many and was easy having a mutation. The infection of the influenza virus was also known as an illness that really was easy to spread. The spread especially through droplet (cipratan) mucus and direct contact were with the sufferer's mucus infected. The variation of the influenza virus was based on the variation from 2 surface antigens, that is H antigens (Hyaluronidase, has been known by 9 sub-types) and N antigens (Neuraminidase, has been known 15 sub the type). (saw the picture). The sub-type variation of this influenza virus also caused the emergence of various variations of the species kind that were sensitive to this virus infection. The influenza virus could attack the poultry, the pig, the whale et cetera, including also humankind. But the attack is generally limited in the certain species kind to individually the sub-type of the virus.

For example to humankind that up till now was known as the seasonal influenza illness, only was caused by the virus infuenza the B type, A type influenza the sub-type H1N1, and A type influenza the sub-type H3N2. Diagnosis humans that was infected by the bird flu virus did not have the typical clinical sign. The sign of the illness in the beginning stage like the common influenza illness, that is the existence of the headache and the cough of the fever. In the development of the illness, hot did not descend and that was typical was the fast breathless emergence got serious. The picture of the blood inspection is also not typical, like the virus attack generally that is the existence of the decline in the number of white blood cells (lekopeni) and the fall trombosit (trombositopeni) so as the possibility if only was based on this data the doctor will diagnose as dengue fever dengue fever or the fever tifoid.

Anamnesa about the story of the existence of the possibility of the sufferer's contact with the poultry was very important in diagnosing bird flu before the laboratory inspection could be carried out. In order to give the guide for people and the health power, then Department of Health RI grouped the case of AI H5N1 to humankind was classified in 3 kinds, in accordance with the development of the diagnosis, that is the case suspek AI, the case probable and the case of confirmation.

1. The Suspek whenever suspicion someone suffered the hot fever 38 C levels were accompanied with one or more the sign along with, the cough, was sick the throat, pilek, breathless (the short breath) was increased with one or more the situation below this:

a. Once contact with the poultry was sick/died suddenly that was not yet known by his cause as well as his raw product (the egg, the bowel) including the waste for the last 7 days before emerging the sign above. That was meant by contact to be treated, cleaned the pen, processed, killed, buried/throw away/membawa

b. Had lived in the location that was gotten by the death of the abnormal poultry for the last 7 days before emerging the sign above. The area of the location was determined with the mobilisation of the poultry that died

c. Once contact with the sufferer AI confirmation for the last 7 days before emerging the sign in atas

d. Once contact with the specimen of AI H5N1 for the last 7 days before emerging the sign in atas

e. Found by the existence lekopenia (not all that 5000/┬Ál) F. Found by the existence of antibodies against H5 with the Hemaglutinase Inhibition inspection (HI) test used eritrosit the horse.

Someone who suffered Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) with one or more the situation below this:

A. Leukopenia (not all that 5000) or limfositopenia

B. The photograph toraks depicted pneumonia atipikal or infiltrat just on the other hand the lungs that increasingly spread in serial foto 2.


Probable case

It was the case that filled the criterion suspek with one or more the situation below this:

a. Found by the existence of the rise titer antibodies 4 times against H5 with the HI test inspection used eritrosit the horse or the ELISA test

b. Results of the limited laboratory for influenza H5 (terdeteksi him specific antibodies H5 in the single serum specimen) used neutralisasi test.


3. Confirmed case

It was the case suspek or the possibility was attacked with one or more the situation below this:

a. Culture (the culture) the influenza virus of A/H5N1 positif

b. PCR Influenza A/H5N1 positif

c. To Imunofluorescence (IFA) test was found positive antibodies by using antigens monoklonal influenza A/H5N1

d. The rise titer specific antibodies Influenza/H5N1 in the phase konvalesen totalling 4 times or more compared with the acute phase with microneutralization test.

So in this case, the assurance of the cause diagnosis of this infection could be just carried out was based on the laboratory inspection that could prove the existence of the virus infection in the sufferer, that is with the existence of this virus directly or by checking the existence of antibodies anti the bird flu virus to the sufferer. The antibodies inspection was the inspection that fast results at a cost of that was cheap and technically was easy to be done by using the sample took the form of the serum of the sufferer's blood. Antibodies were one of the very specific immunity systems, that was formed by humankind as the response when having the foreign object (the virus) entered the body. Because only was the infection response, then antibodies were just detected in blood after approximately 1 week being sick. Moreover antibodies that were formed could remain several months or even several years to the sufferer's blood. So as the antibodies inspection could be just made by the foundation the infection diagnosis when most was not carried out twice the inspection with the distance 1 - 2 weeks.

In this inspection antibodies could be made infection proof when in the second inspection (the phase konvalesen or recuperation) was obtained by the increase titer minimal 4 times or more were compared by results titer the first inspection that was taken in the acute phase the infection. This was based on consideration of this sufferer still in the active process of forming antibodies as the response to the infection incident that just happened. If results far were not different between the first and second inspection, then indicated that the infection has happened in several months, or the year beforehand. So the antibodies inspection for the bird flu diagnosis, although in fact was specific enough, but could not help in the handling of the sufferer and the epidemiological handling (prevented the spreading of the illness). Because in the day to 14 sufferers has been in the recuperation phase or even has died.

Penyebaran dangers of Bird Flu, WHO Fokus Pantau Makassar

On Thursday, 27-11-2008 -Panakkukang MAKASSAR, BKM -- two subdistricts in Makassar, respectively Makassar and Panakkukang currently was under the World Health Organitation monitoring (WHO). The two areas were regarded as serious the spreading of bird flu, because of becoming the place of the poultry trader. That was expressed in the meeting between Mayor, A Herry Iskandar and the consultant WHO, Omai M. Melalui Omai, of WHO stated his willingness to help Makassar in dealing with the spreading of the bird flu virus. Kasubag Pemberitaan of the Part of Humas Municipal Government Makassar, Pagar of Nature that joined this meeting said, WHO will focus the monitoring and the control of bird flu in the Makassar Subdistrict and Panakkukang. "Two territories were the place" of the "poultry trader, so as to be regarded as serious," said the Fence of Nature. On the same day, Director Pengendalian of Departemen infectious diseases of the RI Health, Prof Dr Dr Tjandra Yoga Aditama also met the Mayor. To the reporter ended the meeting, Tjandra explained, if pendemi bird flu or the spread H5N1 antarmanusia was found in a territory, then the territory then this territory must be isolated. The human traffic will be eliminated in the certain period, because of the territory really berbaya for the health. The human traffic was permitted if being stated free bird flu.
The "bird flu pandemic had never been experienced all over Indonesia." However did not mean us was silent, because the bird flu attack repeatedly happened, said Tjandra in the town hall, yesterday. According to him, to be able to be handled quickly, then the handling of bird flu must be carried out together. Not only the government, but the community must be involved. "Therefore I came here to ask the guidance" of the "mayor to spread out the simulation" of "bird flu this coming March 2009," obviously him. He denied it if the simulation of bird flu that was spread out in Makassar because this area had the potential to be gotten by the pandemic. This activity only as the pattern of the control of bird flu.

Pandemi Flu Burung Isolated Director General Territories

Pandemi Flu Burung Isolated Director General territories, P2PL Department of Health Meet Government Official of the Makassar City
On Thursday, 27-11-2003
Makassar, Tribun -
the Government prepared a quarantine procedure or the isolation for territories that contaminated with the bird flu illness. The procedure will at once be carried out automatically if the pandemic happened.

Was like this it was said the Executive the Task of the Director General of the Control of the illness and Lingkungan Sanitation (P2PL), Prof Dr Dr Tjandra Yoga Aditama, ended met the Guardian of the Makassar City, A Herry Iskandar, in the Makassar town hall, on Wednesday (26/11). "All of us certainly did not want the pandemic (the spread from humankind to humankind) happened." But if that really happened, then automatically the procedure will be carried out by us. This a kind better safe than sorry, said Tjandra. Although in several countries in Asia the spreading of the illness that made to happen/caused by the virus H5N1 that entered the pandemic stage, Indonesia did not yet experience him.

The spread of the illness that could turn off that just happened from the animal to humankind. However often was expert believe in, the spreading of the bird flu virus would to the pandemic stage as the spreading of the common flu virus. In several areas in Indonesia with the case of highest bird flu then was not yet found transmitting from humankind to humankind. Tjandra explained, Makassar and South Sulawesi in fact entered as the endemic area of bird flu.

However the number of cases that emerged far more seldom was compared the Special Capital District of Jakarta, West Java, and Banten. The case of the spread against humankind in Indonesia happened during 2005 set. Up to now 112 people die from 137 positive cases of bird flu. In Makassar, the case of the death happened during 2006 set that struck a child named Akira.