Home » Environment » FDA Preparing for Possible Bird Flu Spread Among Humans: Commissioner

Click on image to purchase

Olduvai III: Catacylsm
Click on image to purchase

Post categories

Post Archives by Category

FDA Preparing for Possible Bird Flu Spread Among Humans: Commissioner

FDA Preparing for Possible Bird Flu Spread Among Humans: Commissioner

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is preparing for a scenario in which the highly pathogenic avian influenza starts spreading among humans, the agency’s commissioner said on May 8.

“This virus, like all viruses, is mutating. We need to continue to prepare for the possibility that it might jump to humans,” Dr. Robert Califf, the commissioner, told senators during a hearing in Washington.

The influenza, also known as the bird flu or H5N1, has recently started spreading among cattle and other species. One person in Texas has had a confirmed case this year.

So far, genetic sequencing and other data indicate that influenza poses little risk to people, and there are no signs that the flu is transmitting from person-to-person, according to U.S. officials. But they are working on getting treatments, tests, and vaccines ready in case that changes.

“We’ve been busy getting prepared for if the virus does mutate in a way that jumps into humans on a larger level,” Dr. Califf told the Senate Appropriations Committee’s Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee.

The patient in Texas primarily experienced one symptom: inflamed eyes. Neither the patient nor many of the cows that have been infected have suffered respiratory symptoms. H5N1 commonly infects the respiratory tracts of birds.

“The real worry is that it will jump to the human lungs, where, when that has happened in other parts of the world for brief outbreaks, the mortality rates have been 25 percent,” Dr. Califf said. The worry is based in part on how viruses typically mutate, such as in the case of COVID-19.

From 2003 to April 1, 2024, 889 cases of H5N1 have been confirmed across the globe, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Of the patients, 52 percent have died.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
Click on image to read excerpts

Olduvai II: Exodus
Click on image to purchase

Click on image to purchase @ FriesenPress