According to the scientists, the flu virus is not an “immediate problem”. But it has “all the features” that it could be highly infectious to humans. Therefore, it is essential to monitor the development closely. Since the virus is new, humans are likely to have little or “no” immunity, the researchers warn.
BBC refers to the magazine “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences”. There, the scientists demand that measures to control the virus in pigs and close monitoring of workers in the pig industry should be implemented immediately.
First infections in China
The virus, which the researchers call “G4 EA H1N1”, can grow and multiply in the cells near the human respiratory tract. Evidence was found that the most recent infection came from people working in slaughterhouses and the pig industry in China. Explosive: The current flu vaccines do not seem to protect against this. Professor Kin-Chow Chang, who works at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom, told the BBC: “We are currently distracted by the corona virus, and rightly so. But we must not lose sight of the potentially dangerous new viruses. »
The flu virus is reminiscent of the 2009 swine flu that started in Mexico. At that time, the virus spread rapidly and in the meantime grew into a pandemic, which ultimately ended less deadly than originally feared. This is mainly because many older people had some immunity to swine flu – presumably because of the similarity to other flu viruses that had been circulating years earlier. (nim)