CDC says Avian Flu H5N2 strain harmless to humans, but until when?

Thursday, April 30, 2015
By Paul Martin
Apr 26, 2015

“Most of the time, these viruses don’t have human disease potential, but obviously you need to be very careful. Nowadays, you can’t say anything about flu with certainty.” stated expert in emerging infections, Dr. Stephen Morse from Columbia University.

Just this week, CDC released a statement that humans aren’t vulnerable to the strain that infected tens of thousands of birds in 12 states in the United States including more farms in Ontario, Canada but then again, scientists are now looking forward to the future to predict the long-term threat that the strains may impose to humans.

The avian flu was believed to come from the influenza type A virus and often transmitted through migratory birds that visits countries by season as well as waterfowls birds like geese, shorebirds and ducks.

As of now, H5N2 strain has not infected any human yet but then as what scientists say it’s not impossible for a human to be infected by birds who died of the virus.

Viruses are categorized by types of proteins. Hemagglutinin stands for “H” which has 16 varieties, while N stands for neuraminidase which has 9. For their potency to kill poultry, they are classified as “low pathogenicity” and “high pathogenecity”.

The first appearance was seen as the lethal H5N8 from Asia and then quickly spread in the parts of US and pacific fly zone. When the virus touched down in the US, it mixed with US’s own strain of influenza strains and then mutated said Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s associate director for policy and preparedness, Dr.Rubin Donis.

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