Bird flu spreads among blood relatives

Nov 06, 2006

Healthcare workers in Indonesia are noticing that outbreaks of the deadly bird flu seem to come in family clusters, mostly affecting those linked by blood.

Indonesia is battling one of the worst outbreaks of the virus in the world, with four reported dead only in the last month, said USA Today.

Diana Ginting, head of a local health district office in Sumatra, where seven people died in May, told the newspaper, "No husbands and wives are infected; it's all brothers and sisters, mothers and children."

She and other health workers' suspicion that the spread of the disease is aided by a genetic component was supported last week in a report from the World Health Organization. In human-to-human transmission cases in Indonesia, the report found they occurred among those carrying the same genetic trait, USA Today reported.

Some experts fear up to 30 percent of poultry in Indonesia is infected by the deadly strain of the virus.

Battling the problem has been particularly difficult in Indonesia because it is so spread out, affecting vaccine availability.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: CDC: Raw tuna suspected as Salmonella source in outbreak

Related Stories

Peat fire emissions may shed light on climate change

Jan 16, 2015

Wildfires, which send hot flames and smoke high into the air, create black carbon emissions associated with climate change and risk to human health. Carbon emissions from wildfires in the contiguous U.S. ...

Plane search spreads through Australia-sized zone

Mar 18, 2014

Investigators trying to solve the mystery of a missing Malaysian jetliner received some belated help Tuesday from Thailand, whose military said it took 10 days to report radar blips that might have been the ...

Coal rush ravages Indonesian Borneo

Dec 04, 2013

Barges loaded with mountains of coal glide down the polluted Mahakam River on Indonesian Borneo every few minutes. Viewed from above, they form a dotted black line as far as the eye can see, destined for ...

Recommended for you

Aspirin to improve leg ulcers

7 hours ago

Researchers are looking at whether aspirin can improve the healing rates of leg ulcers in older adults.

Sierra Leone marks grim Ebola anniversary

11 hours ago

On May 24 last year a pregnant woman and an older housewife staggered into Kenema hospital in eastern Sierra Leone and were diagnosed within a day as the country's first Ebola cases.

MSF fighting cholera outbreak in Tanzania refugee camps

May 24, 2015

Medical charity Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF, Doctors Without Borders) said Sunday it had launched emergency treatment centres in Tanzania, where thousands of Burundians fleeing unrest have been hit by cholera.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.