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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.

Tuesday 29 May 2007

Scientists identify antibodies against bird flu
Antibodies isolated from bird flu survivors in Vietnam have been found to protect mice from the H5N1 virus, which could lead to a possible treatment (Source: BBC).

Monday 28 May 2007

Bird flu hits tenth Vietnamese area
An outbreak on a poultry farm in Bac Ninh province, 30 kilometres northeast of Hanoi, marks the tenth Vietnamese area to have been hit by bird flu in the past month, according to the agriculture ministry (Source: Reuters).

Sunday 27 May 2007

Thailand to host bird flu vaccine talks
Thailand will host talks on bird flu vaccine production between developed and developing countries in July or August, the public health minister announced (Source: Thai News Agency).

Saturday 26 May 2007

Chinese man in hospital with bird flu
A 19-year-old soldier has contracted H5N1 bird flu, according to the Chinese health ministry (Source: Reuters).

Friday 25 May 2007

China resumes bird flu sample sharing
Two of three samples China promised to send to the WHO have arrived, ending an almost year-long lapse in sample sharing (Source: CIDRAP).

Thursday 24 May 2007

Nigerian farmers increasing H5N1 risk
Farmers in Nigeria are vaccinating their poultry against the H5N1 virus even though there is a government ban on the practice. Experts say they are increasing the risk of contamination if vaccination is not carried out properly or the vaccines are faulty (Source: IRIN).

Wednesday 23 May 2007

Five-year-old Indonesian girl dies of bird flu
A five-year-old girl from Indonesia's Central Java province has died of bird flu, the WHO has confirmed (Source: Reuters).

WHO reaches sample sharing deal
The WHO has announced a framework agreement to ensure that all countries share bird flu samples and have access to vaccines (Source: BBC Online).

Bird flu sample deal could allow for 'exceptions'
The agreement reached on bird flu sample sharing is voluntary and could allow for exceptions, meaning only time will tell if it actually works, say a UN health official (Source: International Herald Tribune).

Tuesday 22 May 2007

Vietnam reports first human bird flu case in 18 months
A 30-year-old man from Vinh Phuc province has tested positive for the H5N1 virus, Vietnam's first human case since November 2005. The WHO is working to confirm the case (Source: Reuters).

Thailand to have new vaccine factory
The Thai government has approved construction of a new pharmaceuticals factory to boost the production of vaccines against flu viruses (Source: Thai News Agency).

Second bird flu outbreak in Ghana
Bird flu has broken out near the town of Sanyani in mid-west Ghana, far from the first outbreak in poultry in the port of Tema (Source: Reuters).

Monday 21 May 2007

Bangladesh needs long-term bird flu strategy
The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation says Bangladesh needs a long-term strategy to fight bird flu, with the virus spread to 11 out of 64 districts since March (Source: Reuters).

H5N1 infecting fewer wild birds
H5N1 is infecting fewer wild birds, suggesting that it may be dying out in wild ― though not domestic ― populations, according to the World Organisation of Animal Health (Source: Reuters).

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