VICTOR HABBICK VISIONS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VICTOR HABBICK VISIONS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Avian flu, conceptual computer artwork. Avian flu is a viral disease of poultry. The H5N1 strain of the avian influenza virus first appeared in humans in Southeast Asia in 1997. Between 2003 and 2005 it killed over 60 people. It is contracted by close contact with infected birds, although it cannot be contracted by eating meat or eggs. Also, as yet, H5N1 cannot be transferred between humans through the air as human flu viruses can. There are fears that the virus may mutate into a human transmissible form, which could lead to millions of deaths worldwide.
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