China Hoarding H5N1 Samples for Over a Year: WHO – Tan Ee Lyn
China has not shared any human H5N1 bird flu samples with WHO-accredited laboratories for over a year, sparking renewed fears that it may be frustrating efforts to track changes in the virus and find ways to fight it.
But Henk Bekedam, WHO’s representative in China, said the Chinese had shared their scientific analyses of virus samples taken from human victims in the past year, and there was no evidence the H5N1 had mutated significantly in a dangerous way…
Although the H5N1 remains primarily a bird disease and has killed only 170 people worldwide since late 2003, experts fear it will mutate into a form that can pass easily among humans, sparking a pandemic that could kill millions. [Full Text]