China reports 4 more H7N9 infections

first_imgApr 2, 2013 (CIDRAP News) – Chinese health officials today reported that the H7N9 influenza virus has been detected in four more people, all in critical condition, raising the number of patients infected with the new strain to seven.All of the patients are from Jiangsu province, an area on China’s eastern coast that borders the city of Shanghai and Anhui province, the two areas that reported the first three H7N9 cases, which included the deaths of two men from Shanghai.A statement today from the Jiangsu Province Health Department, identified and translated this morning by the Avian Flu Diary blog, said all four patients—three women and a man—are in critical condition at hospitals in Nanjing, Wujiang, and Wuxi.One is a 45-year-old woman from Jiangning district who worked as a poultry slaughterer. She became ill with a fever, body aches, and other symptoms on Mar 19 and was hospitalized on Mar 27. The second patient, a 48-year-old woman from the city of Suqian who is a sheet metal worker, got sick with similar symptoms on Mar 19 and was hospitalized on Mar 30.The man who was infected is an 83-year-old resident of Suzhou Wujiang district who came down with a fever and respiratory symptoms on Mar 20 and was hospitalized on Mar 29. The fourth patient is a 32-year-old woman from the city of Wuxi who is unemployed. She started having a cough, fever, and other symptoms on Mar 21 and was hospitalized on Mar 28.The Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention detected the H7N9 virus in samples from the patients, and tests at China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC) lab confirmed the results for the first two cases.A statement on the four new cases today from Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection (CHP) said China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission has verified the cases. It added that no epidemiologic links have been found between the four patients and so far no other H7N9 infections have been identified in 167 of their close contacts.The CHP advised travelers, especially those returning from Shanghai, Anhui province, and Jiangsu province, who have respiratory symptoms to wear face masks, seek medical attention, and share their travel histories with their doctors. It also urged healthcare workers to take extra precautions with travelers who may have had contact with poultry in the three areas.Yesterday Chinese health officials said the source of the infections is probably poultry. The H7N9 virus has previously infected only birds, though other H7 subtypes have been known to infect humans, typically causing conjunctivitis and mild respiratory symptoms.In another statement today, the CHP said it activated Hong Kong’s pandemic alert response level, which triggers certain surveillance and control measures. The alert level is the lowest response category. The next level is serious, and the highest is the emergency level.The city of Shanghai has activated its emergency response plan, based on two recent infections and deaths from H7N9 in the area, and health officials in Beijing have stepped up their surveillance for hospitalized cases of avian flu and pneumonia from unknown cases, The Standard, an English-language daily newspaper in Hong Kong, reported today.The World Health Organization (WHO) today published a frequently-asked-questions resource about H7N9 on its Web page, which emphasized that so far health officials have found no evidence of human-to-human spread, though investigators are exploring all possible sources.”The risk associated with A (H7N9) avian influenza virus to the general population in China and beyond is being investigated and will be shared to the public when information becomes available,” the WHO said.Les Sims, BVSc, an Australia-based animal health consultant with extensive experience with avian flu in Asia, told CIDRAP News that it’s still too early to draw firm conclusions about the virus, but the history of avian flu viruses in the region and the apparent pattern of the human cases suggest that some or even most of the cases are likely the result of virus transmission from animals to humans.Sims said his early review of genetic evidence in the public domain strongly suggests that the virus originally came from poultry. “In my view, it is only a matter of time before infected poultry will be detected,” he said.Avian infections with low-pathogenicity H7 viruses with a different neuraminidase (N) subtype have been reported in China and the broader region in the recent past, but genetic information suggests that the H7N9 virus marks the first detection of an H7 virus with internal genes from H9N2 viruses.”The evidence I have seen suggests the virus is probably a low pathogenicity strain for poultry and if circulating in poultry would not necessarily be causing severe disease, which has implications for surveillance programs,” Sims said. In contrast, mass poultry deaths in H5N1 are events that signal an imminent threat to humans.Sims said he’s not aware of any poultry vaccination programs for H7 viruses in Asia, except for Pakistan, where vaccines were used to battle a highly pathogenic H7 virus.A news story in Nature today reported other preliminary analyses of H7N9 genetic sequences from virology experts. It reported that Chinese researchers have sequenced isolates from the first three human cases and posted them to the GISAID flu sequence database. Masato Tashiro, MD, PhD, director of the WHO Collaborating Center for Reference and Research on Influenza at Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases in Tokyo, told the journal that his initial assessment is “worrisome,” because the virus shows several features that suggest adaptation to humans.Tashiro said the new virus appears to be a reassortment of three virus strains that infect only birds, according to the report. He told Nature that the N protein is similar to its counterpart in H11N9 viruses found in South Korea, China, and the Czech Republic, and the gene for the hemagglutinin (H) protein—which plays a role in binding to host cells—appears to belong to a Eurasian H7 avian flu group.Researchers said early analysis suggests the virus has developed mutations that allow the H protein to attach to receptors in mammalian airway cells rather than those in poultry airways, according to the Nature report. They also said early studies suggest that H7N9 can infect cells in the lower airways, which can contribute to severe disease but also can limit the spread of the disease through coughing and sneezing.See also:Apr 2 Avian Flu Diary postApr 2 CHP statementApr 2 CHP statement on control measuresApr 2 Standard storyApr 2 WHO H7N9 FAQApr 2 Nature news storyApr 1 CIDRAP News story “China reports three H7N9 infections, two fatal”last_img read more

‘Raise The Jolly Roger’…Cole, Pirates hand Tigers first loss of season, 5-4

first_imgPittsburgh Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen, center, celebrates with teammates, left fielder Starling Marte, left, and right fielder Gregory Polanco after getting the final out of a 5-4 win over the Detroit Tigers in the Pirates home opener Monday, April 13, 2015 in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)PITTSBURGH (AP) – Brad Ausmus is an optimist, but the Detroit Tigers manager didn’t get carried away even after his team mashed its way through a perfect opening week to the season.“I wasn’t expecting to go 162-0,” Ausmus joked.The Pittsburgh Pirates finally put a crooked number in Detroit’s loss column, riding Gerrit Cole’s right arm and home runs from Josh Harrison, Pedro Alvarez and Corey Hart to hand the Tigers a 5-4 loss on Monday.Baseball’s top-hitting team scored 47 runs while winning its first six games, but was held in check until a late rally against Pittsburgh closer Mark Melancon fell just short. Detroit failed to match the 7-0 start set by the 1984 team that rolled to a World Series title.The Tigers managed just one run out of a bases-loaded, no-out situation in the seventh and scored three times against Melancon in the ninth before pinch-hitter Victor Martinez struck out to end it.“We had a little bit of an opportunity in the seventh and we weren’t able to continue it,” Ausmus said. “Then the last inning, obviously we had the heart of our order, right where you want to be against the back-end of their bullpen. That’s as good as a chance as possible being down four runs.”Pittsburgh Pirates’ Pedro Alvarez, left, celebrates with Jordy Mercer (10) after hitting a solo home run off Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez during the seventh third inning of the Pirates home opener baseball game in Pittsburgh Monday, April 13, 2015. The Pirates handed the Tigers their first loss of the season 5-4. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)Cole (1-0) struck out eight and walked two while giving up just three hit as the Pirates won their second straight home opener.“He was throwing cheese,” Detroit catcher Alex Avila said. “Hitting 97, 98, a couple of breaking balls, changeup. Spotting up, sinking the ball. He was lights out.”Anibal Sanchez (1-1) couldn’t quite keep up, surrendering five runs in 6 1-3 innings, including home runs to Pedro Alvarez and Corey Hart in the seventh to give Pittsburgh some needed breathing room.“I just tried to keep the score close and waited for the team to score some runs,” Sanchez said. “Cole threw a really good ballgame. He pitched really, really well.”Miguel Cabrera went 2 for 4 with an RBI and J.D. Martinez drew the Tigers within a run with a two-run shot off Melancon.Looking to match the start of the Kirk Gibson-led club that won 104 games and rolled to a title 31 years ago, they instead were cooled by the hard-throwing and rapidly maturing Cole.Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) gets the ball during the first inning of a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Pittsburgh Monday, April 13, 2015. Cole got the win 5-4 over the Tigers. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)“Cole was good,” Ausmus said. “He was really good. He was going to be tough to score against, period. We bided our time and were able to get back in the game.”Just not all the way to the front. Cole breezed through six innings, twice retiring Cabrera, before running into trouble in the seventh after loading the bases with no outs. Jared Hughes came in to protect a 2-0 lead. His first pitched turned into a double play by Nick Castellanos and his third was a harmless popup by Avila.“You just have to pound the zone, that’s the big thing,” Hughes said. “The other hitters know you’re going to do it and they’re probably going to be swinging.”Alvarez then led off the bottom of the seventh with a homer to center and Hart followed three batters later with a drive to the bleachers in left field with a two-run shot for his 1,000th career hit to make it 5-1.CRUSING CABRERACabrera’s two hits actually forced his average to “dip” to .517 on the season. He was named the American League Player of the Week earlier Monday after going 13 for 25 (.520) with two doubles, two homers and eight RBI to start the year.“He’s swung the bat extremely well,” Ausmus said. “He’s the best hitter in the game for a reason and he probably has a few of those awards on the mantle.”TRAINER’S ROOMTigers: Closer Joe Nathan’s strained right flexor elbow might force Ausmus to get creative at the back end of the bullpen. Joaquin Soria is filling in until Nathan returns from the disabled list, but Ausmus indicated that if there was a save situation on Monday he would have turned to Joba Chamberlain.Pirates: The Pirates reinstated pitcher Francisco Liriano from the paternity list and sent Casey Sadler to Triple-A Indianapolis. Liriano is scheduled to start on Wednesday.UP NEXTTigers: Shane Greene (1-0) makes his second start of the season on Tuesday as the three-game series continues. He tossed eight shutout innings in a win over Minnesota last Thursday. Greene is 4-0 with a 2.70 ERA in six career road starts.Pirates: A.J. Burnett makes his first start in Pittsburgh as a Pirate since 2013. He pitched 5 1-3 innings while getting a no decision against Cincinnati last Thursday. The 38-year-old Burnett is 14-12 with a 2.76 ERA in 35 career starts at PNC Park.last_img read more

Eagles’ Kelly says McCoy was wrong to question his motives

first_imgn this Dec. 20, 2014, file photo, Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy carries the ball during an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins in Landover, Md. A person familiar with the deal says the Eagles have agreed to trade star running back McCoy for Buffalo Bills linebacker Kiko Alonso. The person spoke under condition of anonymity Tuesday night, March 3, 2015, because the teams had not announced the deal. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Chip Kelly says LeSean McCoy was wrong to suggest he favors White players over Black players and says he never considers race when he’s building the Philadelphia Eagles’ roster.“I’ve got great respect for LeSean. However, in that situation, I think he’s wrong,” Kelly said Thursday. “We put a lot of time in looking at the characters and factors that go into selection and retention of players, and color’s never been one of them.”Kelly traded McCoy to the Buffalo Bills in March for linebacker Kiko Alonso. McCoy wasn’t happy about the trade. The two-time All-Pro and leading rusher in franchise history then questioned Kelly’s motives in an interview with ESPN The Magazine earlier this month.“You see how fast he got rid of all the good players. Especially all the good Black players. He got rid of them the fastest,” McCoy said. “But there’s a reason he got rid of all the Black players _ the good ones _ like that.”McCoy referenced Kelly releasing star receiver DeSean Jackson a year earlier, while keeping receiver Riley Cooper.“That doesn’t hurt me,” Kelly said of the comments. “I’m not governed by the fear of what other people say. Events don’t elicit feelings. I think beliefs elicit feelings, and I understood what my beliefs are and I know who I am.”Kelly said he doesn’t plan to address the team about the comments, and he hasn’t spoken to McCoy.“I reached out to him twice and he didn’t accept my call,” Kelly said. “And I talked to his agent and told him I’d love to talk to him at some point, but I haven’t had a chance to touch base with him.”The third-year coach isn’t concerned about perception outside the locker room.“If you start chasing perception then you got a long life ahead of you, son,” Kelly said. “That’s what it’s all about if you’re worried about someone’s perception of what’s going on with you. You control one thing _ you control yourself. And I know how we run this organization, and it’s not run that way.”last_img read more

The worst Cristiano Ronaldo since 2010-11

first_img His next test in La Liga will be against rivals Atletico, at the Vicente Calderon next weekend. Sport EN Cristiano Ronaldo did not score for Real Madrid in the 0-0 draw with Malaga and the Portuguese hasn’t found the net in four of the five La Liga games this season. He still has five goals, but all of them came in a 6-0 win over a limp Espanyol side at the Cornella El Prat.  Against Malaga he tried to score time and time again, but could not. His discontent at being unable to beat Kameni was tangible. He tried to score an incredible 14 times, without success.  27/09/2015center_img CEST Upd. at 14:17 Against Sporting, Granada, Athletic and Malaga he has been incapable of finding the net. His run reminds us of the 2010-11 season where he had his worst goalscoring start as a player of Madrid, scoring three times in six weeks of La Liga. last_img read more

Racing well on track

first_imgA NEW era is dawning for Pakenham racing. The stunning new facility at Tynong is taking shape, with the first…[To read the rest of this story Subscribe or Login to the Gazette Access Pass] Thanks for reading the Pakenham Berwick Gazette. Subscribe or Login to read the rest of this content with the Gazette Digital Access Pass subscription.last_img

Casey warms to Bunjil Place

first_imgBy GARRY HOWE THE City of Casey’s largest infrastructure project, Bunjil Place, has unprecedented community approval. Project director Steve Dalton…[To read the rest of this story Subscribe or Login to the Gazette Access Pass] Thanks for reading the Pakenham Berwick Gazette. Subscribe or Login to read the rest of this content with the Gazette Digital Access Pass subscription.last_img