Three H7N9 cases in same Chinese family, Xinhua reports

January 29, 2014

Three members of the same Chinese family have contracted H7N9 bird flu in the province worst-affected by the current spike in cases, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

A couple and their daughter in Hangzhou, the capital of the eastern province of Zhejiang, were infected one after another, Xinhua said late Tuesday, without giving further details.

Health authorities are investigating, it added.

China's human H7N9 outbreak began in February 2013 and sparked fears the virus could mutate to become easily transmissible between people, potentially triggering a pandemic.

Both Chinese authorities and the World Health Organization (WHO) have said there has been no evidence so far of sustained human-to-human transmission.

But limited spread, such as between relatives in close contact, is possible, and there have been previous such family clusters.

So far this year, China has confirmed 110 human H7N9 cases, including 22 deaths, according to an AFP tally of reports by .

By comparison there were 144 infections and 46 deaths in all of 2013, according to official figures.

The WHO said on Wednesday that the spike in cases this year was not surprising due to seasonal factors, rather than a virus mutation.

"Today there is no evidence that the characteristics of the virus have changed in a way that would explain an increase in cases and change in case fatality," WHO Representative in China Bernhard Schwartländer told AFP in an email.

Zhejiang alone has seen 53 cases this year, almost half the national total, and 12 deaths.

Local authorities are to permanently ban live poultry markets in major cities, according to reports in official media.

Explore further: China's human H7N9 bird flu cases pass 100 in January

Related Stories

China's human H7N9 bird flu cases pass 100 in January

January 28, 2014
The number of human cases of H7N9 bird flu in China this month has passed 100, according to an AFP tally, as the worst-hit province ordered live poultry markets in major cities to be closed.

China reports new H7N9 bird flu death

January 17, 2014
China has reported a new death from the H7N9 bird flu virus, state media said Friday, bringing the toll this year to at least four as the disease returns following its 2013 outbreak.

Hong Kong reports third H7N9 death (Update)

January 29, 2014
Hong Kong Wednesday reported its third death from H7N9 bird flu—an elderly man who had visited mainland China—a day after authorities culled 22,000 birds to curb the disease.

New H7N9 bird flu deaths reported in China

January 14, 2014
China has reported two new deaths from the H7N9 bird flu virus, state media said, as the disease returns following an outbreak last year.

China announces H7N9 bird flu deaths (Update)

January 27, 2014
Twelve people have been killed by H7N9 bird flu in a single Chinese province this month, state media reported on Monday, as infections from the virus see a seasonal spike.

China 'downgrades' H7N9 bird flu description (Update)

January 27, 2014
China has reportedly downgraded H7N9 bird flu in humans, dropping its description as "infectious" in new guidelines on how to deal with the disease, even as new cases spike with the onset of winter.

Recommended for you

Researcher identifies a new way to treat HIV

August 24, 2017
Medical treatment that targets human proteins rather than ever-mutating viruses may one day help HIV-positive people whose bodies have built a resistance to "cocktails" currently used to keep them healthy, according to a ...

New insights into the world of trypanosomes

August 23, 2017
Single specimens of the vermicular pathogens causing sleeping sickness swim inside the gut of the tsetse fly between blood cells which the fly has ingested from an infected mammal. This is where they start their week-long ...

Survey of DNA fragments circulating in the blood suggests vast microbial diversity

August 23, 2017
A new survey of DNA fragments circulating in human blood suggests our bodies contain vastly more diverse microbes than anyone previously understood. What's more, the overwhelming majority of those microbes have never been ...

Study a breakthrough in understanding chronic pain in children

August 23, 2017
A University of Calgary psychologist who studies pediatric pain has made a breakthrough in understanding the cause of chronic pain in adolescents—by focusing on those recovering from major surgeries.

Scientists develop infection model for tickborne flaviviruses

August 22, 2017
National Institutes of Health (NIH) scientists have filled a research gap by developing a laboratory model to study ticks that transmit flaviviruses, such as Powassan virus. Powassan virus was implicated in the death of a ...

Zika virus stifles pregnant women's weakened immune system to harm baby, study finds

August 21, 2017
The Zika virus, linked to congenital birth defects and miscarriages, suppresses a pregnant woman's immune system, enabling the virus to spread and increasing the chances an unborn baby will be harmed, a Keck School of Medicine ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.