Connect to share and comment

Lab-dish advance against MERS virus

Chinese scientists said Tuesday they had identified a compound that, in lab dish experiments, blocks infection by the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus. A type of small protein, also known as a peptide, prevents the spikey virus from fusing with human respiratory cells, they said. Fusion is a key step in replication of the virus. It enables the virus to infiltrate a cell and hijack its cellular machinery in order to reproduce. The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, was led by Shibo Jiang at Fudan University in Shanghai.

Deadly pig virus could cost industry millions if allowed to spread, group warns

TORONTO - A deadly pig virus that has infected at least two Ontario farms could cost the Canadian pork industry tens of millions of dollars if it spreads across provincial borders, a group representing Ontario's hog farmers warned Monday. Officials announced a second case of porcine epidemic diarrhea was confirmed this weekend in a farm in Chatham-Kent, as well as a possible third case in the same region. The first case, a farrow-to-finish farm in southwestern Ontario, was found last week — a discovery that heightened concern among the country's hog producers.

Mass wild boar cull in Lithuania as African swine fever strikes

Lithuania said Monday it plans a mass cull of its wild boars due to an outbreak of African swine fever after neighbours banned pork import from the Baltic EU state. "The goal is to leave up to 10 percent of the current 60,000-strong (wild boar) population to prevent the virus from spreading," said Jurgita Savickaite, spokeswoman for the Food and Veterinary Service. Non-EU neighbours Russia and Belarus banned pork products from Lithuania that are not processed thermally after the virus was detected in the country last week, she told AFP.

Health board says Canada not ready for virus that has killed millions of US pigs

An animal health board says Canada is not ready to deal with a virus that has been sweeping through farms in the United States, killing millions of baby pigs. Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea has not been found in Canada, but producers worry it could quickly ravage hog farms here if the pathogen makes it across the border. "Good grief, it would be chaos if it was discovered here as well. There is still a tremendous amount of work to do," Robert Harding, executive director of the Canadian Swine Health Board said from Ottawa.

Cold, wet weather may help spread deadly pig virus: USDA

(Reuters) - Frigid temperatures across a large swath of the United States this week followed by warmer conditions could aid the spread of a fatal pig disease now in 22 states, affecting hundreds of thousands of pigs, a swine veterinarian said on Thursday. "The virus likes cold, wet and cloudy days," said Rodney Baker, a swine veterinarian at Iowa State University at Ames, Iowa, the top pork producing state in the United States.

Test shows S. Korea's suspected FMD case false alarm

SEJONG, Dec. 31 (Yonhap) -- A close examination of a suspected case of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in South Korea was a false alarm, the government said Tuesday. "The reported FMD case has tested negative for the disease," the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said. A small farm with 13 heads of cattle in Yeongcheon, some 340 kilometers south of Seoul, had reported the case to the authorities on Monday. FMD, also known as hoof-and-mouth disease, is an infectious viral disease that affects cloven-hoofed animals, including pigs, deer and sheep.

Bird flu subtype re-emerges in Hong Kong

An elderly man has contracted a mild form of bird flu in the first case of its type for four years, Hong Kong officials said on Monday. "We are now investigating a confirmed human case of influenza A H9N2, affecting a man aged 86," Leung Ting-hung, controller of the city's Centre for Health Protection, told reporters. H9N2 is an avian flu subtype that mainly affects ducks and chickens but can also pass to humans, causing mild symptoms. Under Hong Kong law cases of such infection must be made public, according to Leung.

S. Korea reports suspected case of foot-and-mouth disease

SEJONG, Dec. 30 (Yonhap) -- A possible case of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) was reported at a farm in the southern part of South Korea on Monday, the government said. The case was filed by a small farm in Yeongcheon, 344 kilometers south of Seoul in North Gyeongsang Province, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. A close examination is currently under way with the outcome of the test expected early Tuesday, the ministry said in a released statement.

U.S. states affected by deadly pig virus now at 20: USDA

(Reuters) - Nebraska has become the latest U.S. state to be hit by a deadly pig virus, bringing the total number of states affected to 20, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said this week. The Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv) had never been reported in North America until May, when it was discovered in the United States. The virus has fueled market concerns that U.S. hog supplies will decline steeply next spring and summer.

UAE records first MERS death

A Jordanian expatriate has died in Abu Dhabi shortly after giving birth in the first recorded death from the MERS virus in the United Arab Emirates, health officials said. The 32-year-old woman had been diagnosed with the deadly coronavirus last month when she was eight months pregnant. So far her newborn son has not tested positive for the disease but the World Health Organisation said "further investigations into close contacts of the family, the newborn baby and healthcare workers are ongoing."
Syndicate content