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Low-pathogenic avian flu viruses can infect humans

first_imgSep 13, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – European researchers have reported what they call the first evidence that low-pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) viruses—not just highly pathogenic (HPAI) strains like H5N1—can infect humans.The finding in a study of Italian poultry workers suggests that avian flu viruses have more chances than previously suspected to mix with human flu viruses, potentially creating hybrids that could trigger a human flu pandemic, according to the report published online by the Journal of Infectious Diseases.The researchers, led by Isabella Donatelli of the Instituto Superiore di Sanita in Rome, took serum samples from 983 workers at several farms in northern Italy from August 1999 until July 2003. Several avian flu outbreaks occurred there during that period, including both LPAI and HPAI strains of H7N1 and an LPAI H7N3 strain. (LPAI viruses cause mild illness and few deaths in poultry, while HPAI viruses cause severe illness with high death rates.)The serum samples were tested for antibodies to the avian viruses. To ensure accuracy, the researchers tested each sample with hemagglutination inhibition (HI) and microneutralization (MN) assays. If either of these came back positive, a Western blot analysis was done.None of the 798 serum samples collected during or after the first four outbreaks tested positive for antibodies to H7N1 or H7N3 viruses. However, 7 of 185 samples (3.8%) taken during an H7N3 outbreak in 2002 and 2003 tested positive for both viruses in the MN assay, and 4 of those 7 tested positive for both viruses in the HI assay. Both tests showed higher titers of antibodies to the H7N3 (LPAI) strain. In the Western blot testing, all seven samples showed clear reactivity, unlike control samples (which had tested negative in the HI and MN assays).All the workers who tested positive had had close contact with turkeys or chickens in dusty poultry houses, the authors report. None of the workers reported any flu-like illness at the time of the avian flu outbreaks, and only one reported symptoms of conjunctivitis, an ailment seen in some Dutch poultry workers during an HPAI outbreak in 2003.”To our knowledge, this is the first serological evidence of transmission of LPAI viruses to humans during an epizootic in domestic poultry,” the report says. It adds that reports of human infections associated with other avian flu outbreaks—in the Netherlands, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Hong Kong, and Canada—have all involved HPAI strains.The researchers call for “permanent” surveillance for avian flu viruses in both animals and humans to shed more light on how the viruses jump the species barrier.”Our findings highlight the risk of the emergence of a potentially pandemic strain, as a result of reassortment of avian and contemporaneously circulating human strains during outbreaks of AI [avian influenza] caused by LPAI viruses,” they write.The authors also say, according to a Journal of Infectious Diseases news release, that poultry workers should be regularly vaccinated against ordinary flu to reduce the risk of gene-swapping between avian and human flu strains.Puzelli S, Di Trani L, Faviani C, et al. Serolgoical analysis of serum samples from humans exposed to avian H7 influenza viruses in Italy between 1999 and 2003. J Infect Dis 2005 Oct 15;192(8):1318-22 [Full text]See also:Commentary on Puzelli article in same issue of JID [Full text]last_img read more

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Drewry: Recovery on the Horizon for VLGC Owners

first_imgThe very large gas carrier sector is expected to enter the recovery cycle from the second half of 2018 amid a slowdown in fleet growth, shipping consultancy Drewry said.2017 was one of the toughest years in the history for VLGC shipping as ample vessel supply squeezed the freight market. VLGC earnings in the spot market, on the benchmark AG-Japan route, averaged USD 12,500pd, way below the break-even rate of USD 21,000pd.Shipowners are hoping for a better future as annual fleet growth is set to slow down from 16% in 2016-17 to a more manageable 5% over 2018-19. However, new ordering is also picking up, with seven VLGCs ordered in the first month of 2018 as owners look to position themselves for the next upswing in the freight cycle.According to Drewry’s freight rate forecast for VLGCs over the next three years, rates would improve from this year and strengthen further in 2019-20. However, rates are unlikely to touch the highs seen in 2014-15 when the bull run was led by a sudden pick-up in propane demand from new PDH plants in China.“Our outlook for 2018-20 suggests an average freight rate of USD 23,400pd, below the USD 28,800pd that was recorded between 2011 and 2013,” Shresth Sharma, senior analyst for gas shipping at Drewry, said.Sharma explained that the reason for the difference between average historical and future rates is that VLGC fleet ownership has become more fragmented since 2013 as many new players entered the market during the boom period of 2014-15.At the end of 2017, there were 62 companies in the VLGC sector, 17% more than at the end of 2013.last_img read more

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Burned bodies found after Morocco protests – minister

first_imgProtesters marched through Rabat and other Moroccan cities on SundayFive burned bodies have been found in a bank which was set on fire following anti-government protests in Morocco on Sunday, the interior minister has said.Taib Cherkaoui said the bodies were discovered in the northern town of Al Hoceima.He said the protests in Al Hoceima and other towns and cities were peaceful, but added that acts of vandalism and looting took place after the rallies.The protesters demanded that King Mohammed VI give up some of his power.So far there has been no independent confirmation of the deaths in Al Hoceima, and it is not clear how they may have died.Protests have spread across the region since popular movements in Tunisia and Egypt forced out leaders.However, analysts say that – unlike other countries that have seen protests – Morocco has a successful economy, an elected parliament and a reformist monarchy, making it less vulnerable to a major uprising.Former BBC Morocco correspondent Richard Hamilton says regular protests are allowed and the government has promised to double food subsidies.But beneath the surface real problems are lurking, he adds.With a huge young population, many of them poor or unemployed.The gap between rich and poor has been described by one commentator as “obscene” and parliamentary elections are said by critics to be a fig leaf for an undemocratic system, he says.King Mohammed is a member of the Alawite dynasty that has been ruling Morocco for some 350 years, claiming a direct line of descent from the Prophet Muhammad.It is regarded as almost sacrilegious to question his role as king, our correspondent says. 35 Views   no discussions Share Tweet News Burned bodies found after Morocco protests – minister by: – February 21, 2011 Share Share Sharing is caring! BBC Newslast_img read more

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Osimhen dedicates award to late dad

first_imgRelatedPosts Napoli Coach: Osimhen young lad with old brain Super Eagles soar on FIFA ranking FIFA ranking: Nigeria moves up by two spots, now world 29th Red-hot Super Eagles striker Victor Osimhen has dedicated the 2020 Marc-Vivien Foe prize to his late father.The Lille of France forward via his twitter handle wrote: “Grateful to God for almighty. “I dedicate this amazing award to my late father thanks to those who voted for me and also a big shoutout goes to Simon Moses and the rest of the nominees.“Thank you once more.”The LOSC Lille of France star beats compatriot Moses Simon (Nantes), Saint-Etienne’s Denis Bouanga, Montpellier’s Andy Delort, Monaco’s Islam Slimani plus Rennes’ trio of Mbaye Niang, Hamari Traore and Edouard Mendy to the award.Osimhen became an instant hit in Lille’s colour after joining the French club from Sporting Charleroi of Belgium.The 21-year old forward succeeded Nicolas Pepe as he became the second Nigerian after Vincent Enyeama (2014) to claim the individual prize. Osimhen, who was adjudged Lille’s player of the season had previously won FIFA U17 World Cup Silver Ball and was also named Africa’s Youth Player of the Year by the Confederation of African Football.Tags: FC NantesLOSC LilleMoses SimonSuper EaglesVictor Osimhenlast_img read more

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The Latest: German soccer could resume on May 9

first_img Associated Press The Latest: German soccer could resume on May 9 The Tour de France cycling race has been rescheduled to start Aug. 29 and end Sept. 20. The final day coincides with the same day the rescheduled French Open tennis tournament is to begin.Maracineanu was speaking in an interview with Eurosport television on Wednesday night. She says leagues could potentially start in September or have their remaining games canceled altogether. There are 10 league games left to play in France’s top two soccer leagues. Rugby’s Top 14 league has reached the semifinal stage.Public gatherings are banned in France until at least mid-July but Maracineanu says they could be extended until “at least September.”Maracineanu is a former Olympic swimmer. She says “it wouldn’t be the end of the world” if the Tour de France has to be canceled.___ UEFA has postponed next year’s women’s European Championship soccer tournament to July 2022.The UEFA executive committee decided the new dates for the 16-nation tournament in England will be July 6-31.The switch was made after UEFA and the IOC decided last month on one-year postponements for Euro 2020 and the Tokyo Olympics. Britain, the Netherlands and Sweden will play in the women’s soccer tournament at the Olympics.Wembley Stadium in London will stage both the men’s and women’s European finals.UEFA says the rescheduled women’s tournament will retain the same 10 stadiums. It opens with England playing at Old Trafford in Manchester. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___German soccer could resume on May 9 if regional politicians sign off on the league’s plan. Players selected for the Euro 2020 tournament will earn at least 130 million euros ($140 million) more for their clubs from UEFA.___West Ham manager David Moyes has been delivering fruit and vegetables to elderly residents in his village during soccer’s lockdown amid the coronavirus outbreak.The former Manchester United coach says he saw a sign in the window of a local shop asking for volunteers to be delivery drivers.Moyes answered the call and says “all I was doing was dropping (the packages) at the door, knocking and then going away. It was beautiful big boxes of fruit and veg.” More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 ___Three more Diamond League meetings will not go ahead as scheduled because of the coronavirus pandemic.The Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, Oregon, on June 7 and the meet in Paris on June 13 have both postponed with no new dates set. The Bislett Games in Oslo on June 11 will be rebranded as the Impossible Games and turned into an exhibition event.The first nine scheduled events of the 15-meet season have all now either been postponed, rescheduled or downgraded. The Anniversary Games in London on July 4 are now the earliest scheduled competition of the season.There is a larger window to reschedule meets in the second half of the year because the Tokyo Olympics have been postponed to 2021. The state governors of Bavaria and North Rhine-Westphalia have said May 9 would be acceptable but other state officials have signaled they would prefer the middle or end of May.League CEO Christian Seifert says “if the state governors and the federal government decide that this day is May 9, then we would be ready on May 9.”Seifert says games could be held with a limit of 213 people in the stadium and up to 109 in the surrounding area.___UEFA is sharing almost 70 million euros ($75.5 million) among 676 clubs that released players for European Championship qualifiers and Nations League games in the past two years. It’s still not clear when baseball or soccer will resume in Japan but it will likely be without fans when it does.That was the decision when the heads of Japanese professional baseball and soccer met in online meetings.Japanese baseball commissioner Atsushi Saito says “my feelings that I want to start the season without spectators haven’t changed.”Baseball and soccer officials both agreed nothing could begin until a state of emergency was lifted in Japan. The earliest that can happen is May 6. They are expected to wait until that date before moving forward.The J-League’s top two soccer divisions were suspended in February. Japanese baseball played some preseason games without fans before all play was stopped. UEFA says it’s releasing the money early to help “in light of the current crisis and the financial difficulties many clubs are facing” during the coronavirus pandemic.A long-standing agreement between UEFA and the European Club Association guarantees clubs at least 200 million euros (216 million) from Euro 2020 revenues to compensate for releasing players to national duty in the 2018-20 cycle.Payments were due after Euro 2020 but are now sending much-needed cash to clubs after the coronavirus outbreak forced the tournament to be postponed by one year.The highest-earning club will get 630,000 euros ($680,000) calculated pro rata per player named on a national team’s match sheet. That club was not identified.UEFA says 2.7 million euros ($2.9 million) of the money will go to clubs after the 16-nation Euro 2020 playoffs later this year. April 23, 2020 Organizers said the meet in Oslo would still offer prize money from a $50,000 contribution by World Athletics. It will feature 400-meter hurdles world champion Karsten Warholm attempting a world record in the rarely raced 300 hurdles.___French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu says the resumption of sporting events in the country is not among the government’s priorities.France is locked down until May 11 because of the coronavirus pandemic and speculation has increased recently as to whether the country’s soccer league could resume in late June.Maracineanu says “what’s certain is that sports won’t take priority in our society.” ___A decree issued by the Hungarian government allows most professional sports clubs and soccer teams to cut the salaries of players and other personnel like managers and trainers by up to 70%.The decree signed by Prime Minister Viktor Orban says the wage cuts can be implemented for as long as the state of emergency declared because of the coronavirus pandemic remains in effect.Hungarian lawmakers approved a state of emergency on March 30 without an end-date. That gave the government the right to rule by decree on issues related to the pandemic for as long as it considers it necessary.___ He also had to ask some residents for payment if they hadn’t done so online.Moyes says one incident “with this particular older lady, I think it was 16.80 pounds ($20.70) for one box of fruit and veg. She gave me a 20-pound note and said, ‘Here son, just keep the change.’”The Premier League has been suspended since March 13. That was the day after Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta tested positive for the virus.Moyes had to self-isolate after that because he had come into close contact with Arteta days earlier.___last_img read more

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Ndidi Doubtful for Ukraine Friendly after Suffering Hamstring Injury

first_imgBrendan Rodgers’ decision to name the central midfielder in the starting line-up against Wolves and Chelsea showed how important the Nigerian is to the team as he didn’t feature in any of the pre-season games due to international commitments with the Super Eagles at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.Last season, the Nath Boys Academy product became the third Nigerian player in history to feature in every game played in the Premier League in a single season after Joseph Yobo and Victor Moses.Alex Iwobi (Everton), Oghenekaro Etebo (Stoke City) and Joe Aribo (Rangers) are the other players classed as midfielders in the latest Super Eagles squad.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Wilfred-Ndidi Wilfred Ndidi is unlikely to add to his international caps when the Super Eagles face Ukraine in an international friendly next month and it has nothing to do with Leicester City refusing to release the midfielder to the Nigeria Football Federation.The Leicester City number 25 played through the pain barrier as the Foxes were held to a 1-1 draw by Chelsea in the Premier League on August 18.After tests carried out by Leicester City medics, Ndidi has been diagnosed with a hamstring problem and could miss their next two matches against Sheffield United (Premier League) and Newcastle United (League Cup), but it is expected that he will be available for selection after the international break.last_img read more

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