Scientists Find A New Flu Virus With Pandemic Potential In China

 - Sakshi Post

WASHINGTON: Even before the world finds out any medicine for COVID-19 virus, now one more deadly virus which is capable of triggering a global pandemic was found in China.

Researches in China have discovered a new type of swine flu virus which has the potential to trigger a pandemic, according to a US study published on Monday, June 30.

The researchers named the virus as G4, and it is generally descended from the H1N1 virus that caused a pandemic in 2009.

According to the survey, the virus has all the essential hallmarks which makes it highly adaptable and can infect humans, said scientists at Chinese universities and China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Scientists took 30,000 nasal swabs from pigs in slaughterhouses from 10 Chinese provinces and in a veterinary hospital, from 2011 to 2018. From these 30,000 nasal swabs, they have found 179 swine flu viruses.

Majority of the viruses found were of a new kind, which has been dominant among pigs, since 2016.

After that, the scientists carried out various experiments, including on ferrets, as they experience similar symptoms to humans like fever, sneezing and coughing.

In the studies, scientists found out that G4 was highly infectious, which caused more serious symptoms in ferrets when compared with other viruses.

In the tests, scientists came to know that even if humans gain immunity from exposure to seasonal flu, it doesn't protect them from G4. In a dangerous sign, scientists found out from blood tests that 10.4% of swine workers have been infected, as antibodies were created in their bodies due to exposure to the virus.

Along with that, 4.4 per cent of the general population also appeared to have been exposed to the virus.

From the study, scientists found out that the virus has already passed from animals to humans but there is no evidence yet.

Scientists expressed their concern that if the virus passes from animals to humans it will undergo human adaptation, and there is an increased risk of a human pandemic, so scientists have called for urgent measures to monitor people working with pigs.

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