Published Date: 2003-12-28 23:50:00
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Avian influenza - South Korea (06)
Archive Number: 20031228.3151
AVIAN INFLUENZA - SOUTH KOREA (06)
A ProMED-mail post
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International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Sun, 28 Dec 2003
From: ProMED-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Source: The Korea Times, 28 Dec 2003 [edited]
Quail Farm Feared to Be Infected With Bird Flu
The bird flu is suspected to have infected a quail farm in Naju,
South Cholla Province for the 1st time.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry said on Sunday that 3
additional farms in Naju reported bird flu symptoms to authorities.
This group included a quail farm located 8 km from an affected farm
The highly pathogenic avian influenza, also called H5N1 virus, can
technically infect all kinds of birds such as quails, turkeys, and
pigeons -- but only chickens and ducks had so far been confirmed with
the disease. A white silky fowl farm in Umsong, had reported flu
symptoms early last week, but it later tested negative for the virus.
Ever since the virus was discovered on a chicken farm in Umsong,
North Chungchong Province on 15 Dec 2003, a total of 14 farms were
confirmed contaminated with the disease, and 18 farms are currently
under inspection. Meanwhile, the nation's quarantine officials and
research facilities yesterday came under heavy criticism for failing
to detect the spread of the bird flu in the southeastern industrial
town of Ulsan.
Meanwhile, the National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service
and the Ulsan Veterinary Service Laboratory yesterday came under
heavy criticism for failing to detect the spread of the bird flu in
the southeastern industrial town of Ulsan. A suspected case of bird
flu was reported at a chicken farm in Ulju-gun, Ulsan, last Monday.
The city government asked the 2 research centers for a close
examination of the dead bird to see whether it was infected with the
bird flu virus.
Unveiling their test results the next day, the laboratories said the
case was the Newcastle disease, also contagious and fatal but of
little concern because of its rarity. Thus, the city government did
not take any steps, except to set up a sign warning of the Newcastle
virus. The municipal authorities started taking quarantine measures
against bird flu Saturday when the laboratories confirmed that the
affected farm was infected with the avian influenza. [HPAI should be
diagnostically differentiated from velogenic, viscerotropic Newcastle
disease; the latter is endemic in S. Korea (more than 85 outbreaks
have been reported to the OIE during the first 8 months of 2003).
This might have led to the temporary confusion described. (Dual
infection?!) - Mod.AS].
Belatedly on Saturday and Sunday, the local authorities slaughtered
more than 54 000 chickens in 19 farms within the 3-km radius from the
farm at which the bird flu case was detected.
Many more of 620 000 poultry are being raised at 380 farms in Ulju-gun.
The government is also trying to prevent the disease from spreading
to other nearby areas including Kyongju and Chungdo of North
Kyongsang Province as well as Mirayng of South Kyongsang Province.
[Byline: Soh Ji-young]
[Most avian species appear to be susceptible to at least some of the
AI viruses. A particular isolate may produce severe disease in one
species, e.g. turkeys, but not in another, e.g. chickens or any other
avian species. The host range for HPAI will likely vary with the
isolate. In a comparative experimental infection trial, Japanese and
Bobwhite quails demonstrated 100 percent mortality following
intranasal inoculation with A/chicken/Hong Kong/220/97 (H5N1)
influenza virus. See: Pathobiology of A/Chicken/Hong Kong/220/97
(H5N1) Avian Influenza Virus in Seven Gallinaceous Species by L. E.
L. Perkins and D. E. Swayne, Vet Pathol 38:149-164 (2001).
The South Korean HPAI H5N1 virus strain has been reported, so far, to
cause disease in chickens, ducks, and quails. Monitoring in other
species will be of great importance, significantly in pigs and --
obviously -- humans. The infection of humans with an H5 avian
influenza virus in Hong Hong in 1997 has resulted in a
reconsideration of the role of the avian species in the epidemiology
of human influenza. - Mod.AS]