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H7N9 flu peril lies in deep lung infiltration: Study

Published on Jul 4, 2013 6:19 AM
 
A man (right) weighs a chicken in a poultry market in Hong Kong on May 24, 2013. The H7N9 bird flu virus is a peril for humans because it replicates deep in the lungs where it can trigger a dangerous response from the immune system, a study said Wednesday. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP

PARIS (AFP) - The H7N9 bird flu virus is a peril for humans because it replicates deep in the lungs where it can trigger a dangerous response from the immune system, a study said Wednesday.

In addition, no one is likely to have pre-existing immunity to H7N9 and so-called seasonal vaccines cannot protect against it, the study said, confirming suspicions among many virologists.

And while lab tests show that leading anti-flu drugs are effective, there are concerns the virus may acquire gene mutations to blunt these weapons, it added.

The study, published in Nature by the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Beijing, delved into the genetic ID of the virus which emerged in China in February.

 
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