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H5N1 Bird Flu in Sudan

Recombinomics Commentary

April 18, 2006

Cases of bird flu have been found in the capital Khartoum and nearby Jazeera state, an official of the Sudanese Ministry of Animal Resources announced on Tuesday.

"Laboratorial tests have confirmed the existence of bird flu cases in Khartoum and Jazeera," Ahammed Mustafa, undersecretary of the ministry, told reporters.

The above comments increase the number of African countries confirming H5N1.  H5N1 in additional African countries is not a surprise.  The confirmations again highlight the number of countries in Africa and the Middle East that have failed tp detect H5N1.  H5N1 migrated through the Middle East and into Africa in the fall and winter.  Although a number of countries in Africa (Egypt, Nigeria, Niger, Burkina Faso) and the Middle East (Turkey, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Iran, Israel, Jordan) have confirmed H5N1, many others have not.

The countries failing to identify H5N1 reveal severe deficiencies in monitoring.  Many of these countries report hundreds or thousands of negative tests results, but the countries fail to detect low pathogenic bird flu, which is common in migratory birds world wide.  These false negatives highlight monitoring shortfalls, which are not being addressed.

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