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Influenza A virus subtype H7N7


H7N7 is a subtype of the species Influenza A virus (sometimes called bird flu virus). Highly pathogenic strains (HPAI) and low pathogenic strains (LPAI) exist. H7N7 can infect humans, birds, pigs, seals, and horses in the wild; and has infected mice in laboratory studies. This unusual zoonotic potential represents a pandemic threat.

In 2003 in the Netherlands 89 people were confirmed to have the H7N7 influenza virus infection following an outbreak in poultry on several farms. One death was recorded. [1] Antibodies were found in over half of 500 persons tested according to the final official report by the Dutch government:

As at least 50% of the people exposed to infected poultry had H7 antibodies detectable with the modified assay, it was estimated that avian influenza A/H7N7 virus infection occurred in at least 1000, and perhaps as many as 2000 people. The seroprevalence of H7 antibodies in people without contact with infected poultry, but with close household contact to an infected poultry worker, was 59%. This suggests that the population at risk for avian influenza was not limited to those with direct contact to infected poultry, and that person to person transmission may have occurred on a large scale. [2] Final analysis of Dutch avian influenza outbreaks reveals much higher levels of transmission to humans than previously thought [3].

In August 2006, low pathogenic H7N7 was found during routine testing at a poultry farm in Voorthuizen in the central Netherlands. As a precautionary measure, 25,000 chickens were culled from Voorthuizen and surrounding farms.[4]


  1. ^ BBC News
  2. ^
  3. ^ eurosurveillance
  4. ^ 2006-08-10 article Mild form of H7N7 bird flu found in Netherlands
  • News
  • Comparison of Four H7n7 Avian Influenza Viruses Associated with Infection and Disease in Humans
  • WHO
  • Avian influenza A virus (H7N7) associated with human conjunctivitis and a fatal case of acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Further reading

  • Human-to-human transmission of avian influenza A/H7N7, The Netherlands, 2003
  • How the Virus Spread from Poultry to People and Pigs
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Influenza_A_virus_subtype_H7N7". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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