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  • Bird flu update: 18 June 2007

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Below is a round-up of the key developments on the spread of the bird flu virus (H5N1) and the threat it poses to human health. Each title is a link to the full article.

Click here to see the latest World Health Organization (WHO) figures of confirmed human cases.

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Sunday 17 June 2007
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Bird flu suspected on farm in Togo
Samples from dead birds on a farm in Sigbehoue, 45 kilometres east of the Togolese capital Lome, are being tested after a suspected outbreak of bird flu, says the Togo ministry of agriculture (source: Reuters).

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Saturday 16 June 2007
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Vietnam reports first bird flu death since 2005
A 20-year-old man from Vietnam's northern province of Ha Tay has died from bird flu, according to the deputy health minister, quoted in the Vietnamese media. If confirmed by the WHO, it would be the country's first case since 2005 (source: Reuters).

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Friday 15 June 2007
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Jordan 'has no bird flu strategy'
Jordan does not have a comprehensive strategy in place and would not be prepared in the event of a bird flu outbreak, says a WHO official (source: The Jordan Times).

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Thursday 14 June 2007
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Indonesian man dies from bird flu
A 26-year-old man from Riau province in Sumatra, Indonesia, has died from bird flu, the WHO have confirmed. The case marks the country's 80th death from the virus (source: Reuters).

Vietnam orders vaccination of all poultry
The Vietnamese minister of agriculture and rural development has ordered animal health authorities to ensure that all poultry are vaccinated against H5N1 (source: Vietnam News Service).

Vietnam and the United States to cooperate on bird flu

Vietnam and the United States have announced a five-year agreement to combat bird flu, with the United States pledging US$1.15 million for the project's first year (source: Thanh Nien News).

Insurance for a bird flu pandemic?
Large donors should pool their resources and pay for private insurance to fund vaccines in the event of a bird flu pandemic, suggests the WHO (source: Reuters).

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Wednesday 13 June 2007
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The WHO says virus sharing should benefit all
Bird flu virus samples are tradable goods and must be treated as such to ensure equal access to the vaccines made from them, says a WHO official (source: Reuters).

WHO: Muslim countries not ready for bird flu
Many Muslim nations are poorly prepared to deal with a bird flu outbreak due to poor resources and public apathy, according to a WHO official (source: Reuters).

Glaxo to donate 50 million doses of H5N1 vaccine
Pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline has pledged to donate 50 million doses of its pre-pandemic bird flu vaccine to a stockpile for the world's poorest nations over three years (source: Reuters).

Indonesian experts: virus mutating, research needed
Indonesian and US bird flu experts have called for more research into the H5N1 virus in Indonesia. A meeting of experts in Jakarta was told there was evidence that some virus strains had changed in some parts of the country, which could have impacts on vaccine production (source: Xinhua).

Vietnam reveals two new bird flu patients
The Vietnamese ministry of health has announced there are two new patients carrying the H5N1 virus: a 20-year-old girl from the northern province of Ha Nam, and a 29-year-old man from the central province of Thanh Hoa, who has since recovered . The WHO has yet to confirm these cases (source: Vietnam Net News).

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Tuesday 12 June 2007
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Sixteen Malaysians given all-clear
Sixteen people admitted to hospital with symptoms of bird flu have been cleared of having the disease, the Malaysian health ministry has confirmed (source: The New Straits Times).

Malaysia 'should produce own bird flu vaccines'
The director general of the Malaysian health ministry says the country will be in "serious trouble" if it has to depend on other countries for bird flu vaccines rather than make its own (source: The Star Online).

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Monday 11 June 2007
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Vietnamese man recovers from bird flu
A 30-year-old man — Vietnam's first case of bird flu in over a year — has recovered from the virus (source: Reuters).

H5N1 found in 'healthy looking' chickens
The H5N1 virus has been found in healthy looking birds, according to the Indonesian health ministry, making it much harder to detect the disease (source: Reuters).

WHO confirms Egyptian girl has bird flu
A four-year-old girl from Abu Diyab village in Egypt's Qena province is infected with the H5N1 virus, the WHO has confirmed (source: Reuters).

Bird flu antibodies registered for patent
A patent for antibodies from Vietnamese bird flu survivors has been registered in the United Kingdom by a group of Vietnamese, Swiss and UK researchers (source: Vietnam News Agency). 

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