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Bird Flu Found In Endangered Japanese Eagle

The mountain hawk eagle of Japan.
by Staff Writers
Tokyo (AFP) Mar 20, 2007
The deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu has been found in the body of an endangered eagle in southern Japan, the environment ministry said Sunday, according to reports.

The ministry had tasked a laboratory at Tottori University with examining the female of the species, called the mountain hawk eagle, after it was found in the village of Sagara, in Kumamoto Prefecture, on January 4. The sick bird died shortly afterwards, according to the Kyodo news agency.

The ministry plans to catch wild birds and collect bird droppings around the area where the bird was found.

The bird is on the Japanese government's list of endangered species and there are believed to be some 1,800 inhabiting mountainous areas from Hokkaido in the north to Kyushu in the south, the report said.

Authorities in Japan this month declared an end to recent bird flu outbreaks, and lifted a ban on transferring chickens and eggs in the areas affected.

Japan reported four outbreaks of bird flu's virulent H5N1 strain in January and February, leading authorities to kill tens of thousands of chickens as a precaution.

The H5N1 virus has killed around 160 people across the world since late 2003 through contact with infected birds.

Japan confirmed an outbreak of the H5N1 strain of bird flu in January 2004 and has since seen periodic cases.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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Researchers at Yale have identified multiple pathogenic "alien islands" in the genome of the A. baumannii, bacteria that has been responsible for new and highly drug-resistant infections in combat troops in the Middle East, according to a report in the March 1 issue of Genes and Development.

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