The Pig Site – Our understanding of the importance of influenza A infection in pig production has evolved rapidly over the past 15 years. Greg Wideman of South West Ontario Veterinary Services explained the impacts of those developments to the 2013 London Swine Conference.
Recent detection of novel subtypes of influenza A, such as H3N2, H1N2 and pandemic H1N1 in swine have heightened our awareness of this pathogen as a primary cause of swine disease and significant zoonotic (from animals to people) and reverse zoonotic (from people to animals) risk.
This paper reviews some ways in which influenza A impacts the pig producer and swine veterinarian… Continue Reading
Source: The Pig Site, November 29, 2013
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By Beth Mole
Nature – Preventing seasonal sniffles may be more complicated than researchers suspected. A vaccine that protects piglets from one common influenza virus also makes them more vulnerable to a rarer flu strain, researchers report today in Science Translational Medicine1.
The team gave piglets a vaccine against H1N2 influenza. The animals responded by making antibodies that blocked that virus — but aided infection with the strain H1N1, which caused a pandemic among humans in 2009. In the study, H1N1 infected more cells and caused more severe pneumonia in vaccinated piglets than unvaccinated ones.
The root of the different immune responses lies with the mushroom-shaped haemagglutinin protein found on the outside of influenza-virus particles, which helps them to attach onto cells in the airways. The protein occurs in all types of flu, but the make-up of its cap and stem vary between strains….>Continue Reading<<
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By Jackie Linden
ANALYSIS – At its global meeting this week, OIE has agreed new standards on tackling antimicrobial resistance and on broiler welfare. Research to develop a vaccine against necrotic enteritis has taken a step forward and an agreement has been signed between a French-based animal health company and a Chinese university for the development of a new H5N1 influenza vaccine.
Posted in Disease, Food Safety, Health Security, News, Poultry
Tagged Animal Health, China, Flu, Food safety, H5N1, Influenza, Poultry disease
MSN News — An outbreak of H1N1 flu has killed 17 people in Venezuela and infected another 250, private media and local authorities said on Monday.
H1N1, often referred to as swine flu, was a flu strain that swept around in the world in a 2009/2010 pandemic.
“We’re suffering a tail-end of the pandemic,” a former Venezuelan health minister, Rafael Orihuela, told a local TV station, commenting on the widespread reports of 17 deaths in the South American nation of 29 million people.
Most of the cases were in border states near Colombia.
Venezuela’s government has not confirmed the figures given by media and local health authorities. But officials said high-risk groups had largely been immunized, with 3 million vaccinations carried out so far this year.
The World Health Organization’s official data show 18,500 people were reported killed in the 2009/2010 H1N1 pandemic, but a study in The Lancet last year said the actual death toll may have been up to 15 times higher at more than 280,000.
Source: MSN News, 28th May, 2013
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By Lavinia Mo of Reuters
MSN News — The new H7N9 bird flu virus can be transmitted between mammals not only via direct contact but also in airborne droplets, and may be capable of spreading from person to person, Chinese and American researchers have found.
A study published in the journal Science and presented at a briefing in Hong Kong on Friday found that three ferrets, an animal often used for flu research, that were in the same cage as ferrets infected with H7N9 had contracted the disease.
One of three ferrets kept in separate cages nearby also became infected, through airborne exposure.
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By Jackie Linden
The Poultry Site – A University of Delaware study has found poultry manure to be less environment-polluting than previous thought. A new report, however, highlights the contribution of livestock to greenhouse gas emissions, while researchers have identified changes in manure management and nutrition that could greatly mitigate the impact from poultry. China is beginning to count the cost of the H7N9 flu outbreaks to its poultry industry.
A new study in the US has found that poultry production brings a lower environmental burden than thought.
Federal environmental programmes have drastically overestimated poultry industry contributions to water pollution, according to a University of Delaware-led study that could trigger changes to river and bay clean-up plans across Delmarva and around the country.
James L. Glancey, a professor in the university’s Bioresources Engineering and Mechanical Engineering departments, said that a multi-state study, based on thousands of manure tests, found that actual nitrogen levels in poultry house manure are 55 per cent lower than the Environmental Protection Agency’s decades-old, lab-based standards.
This work could significantly impact the future of poultry farming in the Chesapeake Bay area, where a forecasting model has been used to guide a federally backed attempt to restore the bay’s health and ecosystems and assign clean-up goals.
Growth in agricultural production has resulted in increased agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – with a huge proportion of emissions coming from livestock production, according to a new report from the Worldwatch Institute.
In Japan, researchers comparing the figures for the output of GHG for pig and poultry production in France and Japan found that changing the manure handling process and increasing the use of synthetic amino acids in feeds could be beneficial in reducing GHG output.
Avian influenza can be very costly for the poultry industry, as the Chinese are finding to their cost. Official figures released this week by the China Animal Agriculture Association estimated that since the H7N9 influenza outbreak the poultry industry has recorded losses of more than 40 billion Yuan (US$6.5 billion).
The central government announced this week subsidies of 600 million Yuan ($96.77 million) to support the poultry producers across the country as live bird markets were closed to control the disease and poultry meat demand slumped. Processing companies will receive short-term subsidized loans and local financial institutions are being encouraged to offer credit aid to breeders and companies.
The China Development Bank, the country’s policy lender has said it has issued emergency loans worth 116 million Yuan (US$18.7 million) to help poultry firms cope with the impact of avian flu.
Chinese economists are predicting fewer cases of H7N9 flu in May and a dramatic improvement in market fortunes by mid-summer.
On human cases of influenza A(H7N9), the latest report from China gives the tally as 130 confirmed cases and 35 deaths from the virus.
Global players are also seeing bird flu affect their bottom lines. McDonald’s Corporation, for example, reported comparable sales in April 2.9 per cent below the same month last year in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa, which the company attributed to the impact of bird flu, especially in China.
Bird flu outbreaks have also been reported this week in Nepal (in a backyard flock; virus subtype unknown), in North Korea (H5N1 highly pathogenic virus in domestic ducks) and Tibet (H5N1 in a mixed flock of village poultry).
Source and Photo: The Poultry Site, 16th May, 2013
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Posted in Disease, Food Security, Health Security, Poultry
Tagged Avian Influenza, China, Flu, Food security, H7N9, Influenza, N5N1, Poultry disease
By Jackie Linden
– FAO’s Deputy Director General has said that human survival depends on agriculture adapting to climate change and that genetic resources are vital for this adaptation. Native breeds have a role to play in a sustainable livestock industry, according to one speaker at a conference in the UK this week, and another outlined how advanced plant breeding techniques have the potential to solve some of the world’s most pressing issues. There is also news of bird flu in China, South Africa and the UK. Continue reading