Bird flu in pigs
Two pigs have been found to be infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus
on the Indonesian resort island of Bali. While it’s not clear yet if the
pigs have died, an investigation is under course.
The fact that pigs can be infected with this virus is a great concern
since they are susceptible to many of the viruses that infect humans. In
many cases, pigs can act as mixing vessels in which genetic material
from avian flu viruses can mix with human influenza viruses, potentially
producing new and deadly strains for which humans have no immunity.
In Indonesia, where the bird flu has killed 52 people so far, the
method utilized to prevent the bird flu spread has been the slaughtering
of birds in selected farms. As for the infected pigs, government
officials are still awaiting the report from Udayana University.
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