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Swine flu "propitious" to a pandemic: why it’s too early to fret

The knowledge might have been drowned in scientific publications. However within the midst of a coronavirus epidemic, the invention by Chinese language researchers of a brand new pressure of swine flu in China takes an entire completely different flip. Suspected of making, in accordance with them, a "pandemic", this virus reveals a excessive adaptability "to contaminate people". Ought to we fear about it? Specialists stay cautious.

Swine flu left its mark in 2009. The virus had killed a number of hundred individuals in Mexico, and 30,000 instances had been recognized in additional than 70 nations. Given the size of the epidemic, WHO had certified the state of affairs as a “pandemic” on June 11, 2009. And it’s the identical pressure, which descends genetically from that of H1N1, that scientists have nonetheless recognized in China .

" It’s not the primary time "

Are we following the identical path, greater than ten years later? "It needs to be remembered that in 2009 it was a flu that introduced collectively a number of origins, not simply swine," tempers Jeanne Brugère Picoux, honorary professor of the Nationwide Veterinary Faculty of Alfort.

As outlined by the World Group for Animal Well being (OIE), swine flu is "a extremely contagious viral an infection of swine. The illness typically spreads in a short time on farms with out all contaminated pigs exhibiting medical indicators of an infection. Contaminated pigs then get better shortly. ” Based on specialists, the illness is frequent. "There’s at all times," confirms to Parisian Vincent Enouf, deputy director of the Nationwide Reference Heart for Influenza on the Pasteur Institute. “There isn’t a motive to fret. It’s not the primary time {that a} pig epidemic has been introduced. It is sensible as a result of pork and people are delicate to the identical viruses, ”continues Jeanne Brugère Picoux.

No inter-human transmissions

Most swine flu viruses, nevertheless, should not pathogenic to people, in accordance with the World Well being Group (WHO). “Nevertheless, some nations have reported human an infection with these viruses. Most have been gentle and the viruses didn’t unfold to different individuals later, ”she says. That is for instance the case in China. Certainly, if American researchers present in employees and folks working with pigs a excessive proportion of contaminated individuals: 10.4%, there isn’t any proof that the virus might be transmitted from human to human.

“There isn’t a proof of human-to-human transmission. It underlines the curiosity of monitoring these farms, through which the virus appears to flow into extra. And be vigilant in these areas if the flu circulates. However this level is lacking within the article, ”underlines Vincent Maréchal, virologist. “Pigs can harbor chimeric viruses from different strains of influenza. These new viruses might be problematic as a result of they’ll then be tailored to people and be prepandemic. It’s subsequently fairly regular that there needs to be this surveillance. That is additionally because of the historical past of influenza pandemics that usually begin from China, "mentioned the professor.

"After the coronavirus, it’s logical that the Chinese language say they’re monitoring their pig farms, as a result of it’s a zoonosis that occurred for Covid, a transmission from animals to people. And particularly when you recognize that 75% of recent rising viruses are from zoonotic influenza viruses. However for the second these researchers have carried out the work of an epidemiologist who has not proven his set up in people, ”says Jeanne Brugère Picoux.