Shanghai closes poultry markets over flu

April 5, 2013 at 6:51 AM
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SHANGHAI, April 5 (UPI) -- Poultry markets in Shanghai were temporarily closed for public safety because of an H7N9 bird-flu outbreak that killed six people, officials said.

The latest death was reported Friday in China's Zhejiang Province, Xinhua reported.

Officials in Shanghai started a mass slaughter of poultry Thursday after the virus was found in pigeons at a market, the BBC reported.

Four of the bird-flu deaths in China were reported from Shanghai.

The H7N9 virus is a variant of avian flu that hadn't been detected before in humans. How people are becoming infected isn't known but the World Health Organization says there isn't any evidence of human-to-human transmission.

In Zhejiang province, officials said a 64-year-old farmer, died Thursday in a hospital, where it was confirmed he had the H7N9 strain, Xinhua reported.

Officials said 55 people who had close contact with him haven't exhibited any symptoms.

China has confirmed 14 H7N9 cases -- six in Shanghai, four in Jiangsu, three in Zhejiang and one in Anhui.

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