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(Image source: U.S. Department of Agriculture)
BY MATT MORENO
A new strain of bird flu that's killed more than one-third of people infected, could resurface
later this year.
According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 37 people have died from 130
reported cases of H7N9. (Via CNN)
The new strain first appeared in China in February, but has slowed recently. A new study
in from China's CDC, published in medical journal The Lancet says it could come back
in the winter months. (Via WCBD)
"The world health organization describes the virus as 'one of the most lethal flu viruses
ever,' saying it appeared to spread faster than the last strain in 2009." (Via WFTS)
Researchers are still unsure whether or not the virus can spread from human to human,
but aren't ruling it out.
Although there's been 37 confirmed fatalities, the new report states its tough to estimate
exactly how many people have contracted the virus and died, since many might not have
symptoms or reported it. (Via Medical Daily)
The World Health Organization reported earlier this month most cases were seen in middle-aged
men who have been exposed to poultry.
A restriction on livel meat markets is helping curve some animal based diseases, but those
spreading to humans often have high fatality rates.
TIME reports in 2003, the H5N1 bird-flu had a 60 percent fatality rate. Then, in 2009,
the H1N1 swine flu killed 21 percent of those infected.
While researchers say they're concerned about the outbreak of the virus, the report says
H7N9 is less fatal than previously believed. If the current virus's mortality rate continues,
its not expected to surpass that of the 2003 bird flu outbreak.