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Medical News & Perspectives
January 28, 1998

Could Virulent Virus Be Harbinger of ‘New Flu'?

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JAMA. 1998;279(4):259-260. doi:10.1001/jama.279.4.259-JMN0128-3-1

MORE THAN 1 MILLION chickens and other food fowl were slaughtered in Hong Kong, China—an event fraught with difficulty—late last month in an attempt to stem the spread of a new antigenic strain of influenza virus originating in birds. The virus emerged to infect at least 16 humans in Hong Kong and, as this issue of JAMA went to press, 4 of those infected had died (see also p 263).

A major concern is the possibility that the new strain could be passed from human to human, which would herald the likelihood of a pandemic.

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