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Mounting Death Toll in Sichuan China Due to Ebola-SZ77?

Recombinomics Commentary

July 24, 2005

Asked sickness pig's symptom, the old farmer long sighed the tone, "these pigs die well are pitiful, belly drum swollen, talks back spits the foam!"

    At in a Lezhi County rural fair teahouse, we had found a village cadre. He said that, sickness pig mainly appears in the Yanjiang area Danshan town, Lezhi County and Jianyang city three places 交界处. The capital positive city has been clear about the pig, the cow, the sheep, the chicken, the duck which the request dies of illness and so on must completely deeply bury, simultaneously to arises the region strict blockade, the domestic animal, domesticated fowl does not permit the outflow. "Our there day before yesterday has buried 5 pigs, yesterday has buried 3 heads."

The above machine translation of a detailed report on the Sichuan outbreak suggests many pigs are dying.  Media reports suggest FAO is not investigating because animals are not dying.  A boxun report indicate the number of dead people is about 31. Seventeen have died in hospitals and 14 more suspect cases have died on farms.

Although reporters are being told the etiological agent is Streptococcus suis group C, the number of human cases worldwide for all groups is less than 100 and none are described as fatal at the Merck Veterinary site.

Thus, although the swine bacteria may be infecting some pigs, there is little data indicating that the swine bacteria is infecting humans or other domestic animals.

Boxun reports cite Ebola strain EB-SZ77 associated with poultry deaths in Shenzhen in April as the cause of the human infections.

The sharing of genetic information between Ebola ad H5N1 is another cause for concern. H5N1 has caused an unprecedented bird flu outbreak in migratory birds at Qinghai Lake.

Isolation and sequencing of the etiological agent in the deaths of humans and domestic animals would be useful.

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