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Three Suspect H5N1 Bird Flu Cases in Ceamulia de Jos Romania?

Recombinomics Commentary

October 8, 2005

Minister Flutur confirmed yesterday evening that 3 people infected with avian influenza virus were discovered in Romanian locality Ceamurlia de Jos. Officials took the first measure: the entire Romania Delta is in quarantine. All the poultry in households in Romanian Delta localities will be killed and owners will be paid damages. Already killed poultry in refrigerators will be incinerated. One ambulance was sent to the Delta and all the inhabitants will be vaccinated against the "bird flu".

The above  report describes three human H5N1 wild bird flu cases.  If confirmed, these would be the first H5N1 human cases reported outside of southeast Asia and would be the first cases directly tied to H5N1 wild bird flu.  There have been third party reports of human cases in China, but not have been confirmed by third parties.

There is also a possibility that the above cases are just a poor translation of the 3 dead ducks in Ceamurlia de Jos.

Although H5N1 in Russia has been closely related to the H5N1 bird flu at Qinghai Lake, there have been no reported confirmed human cases in Russia, Kazakhstan, or Mongolia, although the pneumonia in a poultry worker in Kazakhstan was never fully explained.

If the human cases are H5N1 positive, the the migratory wild birds will cause considerable concern.  It is likely that the wild bird strains are sensitive to the amantadines, so amantadine (Symmetrel) and rimantadine (Flumadine) may be in high demand in Europe if the neuraminidase inhibitors, Tamiflu and Relenza, are in short supply,


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