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Below is a roundup 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.

Monday 14 November 2005

WHO urges caution over fears bird flu has mutated
The World Health Organization has questioned claims by scientists in Vietnam that the bird flu virus has mutated into a more dangerous form, which could spread easily between mammals (Source: ABC).

Suspected bird flu cases in people rising in Asia
As Indonesia says a 16-year-old is suffering from bird flu, several other countries also report more suspected cases in people (Source: Reuters).

Saturday 12 November 2005

Thai child has bird flu
Officials in Thailand say a young child toddler has tested positive for bird flu (Source: The Star – Malaysia).

Friday 11 November 2005

Bird flu might kill by making immune system overreact
Bird flu might cause such severe disease and kill so many people because it makes the immune system 'overreact', say researchers (Source: SciDev.Net).

Lethal bird flu found in Kuwait
One of the two cases of bird flu recently detected in Kuwait was caused by the deadly H5N1 strain of the virus, an official has said (Source: BBC Online).

Thursday 10 November 2005

Major database on flu virus genetics runs out of cash
US government funding for one of the world's main stores of information on the genetics of flu viruses has ended (Source: SciDev.Net).

China ready to test human bird flu vaccine on people
A Chinese vaccine against the bird flu virus, H5N1, is ready for clinical trials in people, said a health official (Source: Xinhua).

China investigates possible case of human bird flu
China is investigating a possible case of bird flu in a female chicken farmer who fell ill after contact with infected poultry (Source:

Bird flu spreads further in Asia
China, Vietnam and Thailand have reported new outbreaks of bird flu in poultry (Source: Reuters).

Wednesday 9 November 2005

World Bank says US$1 billion needed to fight bird flu
The World Bank says US$1 billion will be needed to funded global health and veterinary efforts to tackle bird flu (Source: Reuters).

Test shows new bird flu death in Indonesia
A 16-year-old Indonesian girl who died this week had bird flu, a health ministry official said today (Source: Reuters).

China quarantines 116 people after bird flu outbreak

Authorities in China said they have quarantined 116 people in Liaoning province after two new outbreaks of bird flu there (Source: AP/

Tuesday 8 November 2005
Plant extract 'protects chickens from bird flu'
A Chinese researcher claims that a plant extract can treat birds infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus (Source: SciDev.Net).

Beijing closes poultry markets
Chinese officials are culling six million domestic fowl and closing all 168 live poultry markets in Beijing (Source:

Developing world demands access to flu drugs
Developing countries have called for greater access to bird flu vaccines and drugs (Source: Reuters).

Monday 7 November 2005

Bird flu kills Vietnamese man
Bird flu has killed a Vietnamese man, the country's 42nd victim (Source: Reuters).

Bird flu could cost world US$800 billion
A global flu pandemic, sparked by the bird flu virus, could cost US$800 billion worldwide and governments are failing to deal with the threat, say international organisations (Source:

'Chip' could provide quick bird flu test
A new tool can test for 11 different influenza strains, including bird flu, in less than a quarter of the time it now takes to diagnose flu in patients, say researchers (Source: Reuters).

Bird flu chickens with no symptoms raise concern over eggs
The discovery of chickens infected by the bird flu virus but showing no symptoms of the disease has triggered concern about whether their eggs should be eaten (Source: Reuters).

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