The information on the world’s first case had been sent to the World Health Organization, Russia’s chief medical officer Anna Popova said on state television on Saturday.
Mild disease course in those affected
The disease was mild. According to regional authorities, a chicken farm near the city of Volgograd was affected. After the outbreak of bird flu, the area was quarantined, the administration of the Interfax agency announced on Sunday.
The animals were killed, eggs and frozen meat destroyed.
The re are three poultry farms in the region that specialize primarily in the production of eggs.
Russian authorities reported transmission to WHO
The vector research center in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk had proven that the employees were transmitted with the H5N8 virus. Popova said the data was only sent to WHO when it was completely certain. But she doesn’t know of any case of human-to-human transmission.
The highest incidence and death rates are observed in chickens and turkeys. Avian flu occurs with different subtypes. Several had already known that people could be infected with it. Transmission via infected food is however unlikely.
The German Friedrich Loeffler Institute announced on Friday that the risk of the disease spreading further was still high.
According to the institute, the H5N8 virus has not yet been transmitted to humans. “In the case of avian influenza viruses, there is always the possibility of a quick change in the properties,” said a spokeswoman on Sunday. In addition, if there is a high viral load, as in affected companies, it must be expected that there will be transmissions.
The last major outbreak of avian influenza in European countries occurred in the winter of 2016/17.
The pathogens occur worldwide, reports AGES. In Austria, the AGES national reference laboratory has been investigating an increasing number of wild birds found dead in recent weeks: On February 4, 2021, a swan found dead in Lower Austria (Klosterneuburg) was diagnosed with the highly pathogenic avian influenza virus (HPAI, serotype H5N8). Further cases were confirmed on February 10: a swan in Vienna (H5N8) and two swans in southern Styria (H5N5). (WHAT / dpa)