Click to Translate to English Click to Translate to French  Click to Translate to Spanish  Click to Translate to German  Click to Translate to Italian  Click to Translate to Japanese  Click to Translate to Chinese Simplified  Click to Translate to Korean  Click to Translate to Arabic  Click to Translate to Russian  Click to Translate to Portuguese  Click to Translate to Myanmar (Burmese)

PANDEMIC ALERT LEVEL
123456
Forum Home Forum Home > Main Forums > Latest News
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - H5N1 in Polish cats (???)
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Now tracking the new emerging South Africa Omicron Variant

H5N1 in Polish cats (???)

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Message
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: H5N1 in Polish cats (???)
    Posted: June 25 2023 at 11:47pm

[url]https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-spillover-in-cats-in-poland-and-some-important-questions/[/url] or https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-spillover-in-cats-in-poland-and-some-important-questions/ ;

By Scott Weese on 
POSTED IN CATS

A couple days ago, there was a ProMedMail request for information following a report of a large number of dead cats in Poland. The cats were reported to have had respiratory and neurological disease, so my thought process went to ‘that fits with avian flu spillover’, then ‘but that large of a number would be really surprising.’ However, it had to be on the radar given the clinical signs, limited other diseases that would cause that type of clinical presentation in otherwise healthy adult cats, and the dynamic nature of this massive international H5N1 avian flu pandemic.

A new report has implicated influenza in at least some of these, but details are pretty sparse. There are various reports that ‘flu’ or ‘avian flu’ were identified in at least some of the dozens of dead cats. That obviously raises concern and highlights a need for more detailed information.

It also gets me thinking about a few big questions.

  • Were these actually H5N1 avian flu infections?
  • Was this one event (e.g. a bunch of cats exposed to the same source) or multiple spillovers?
  • Was this likely all bird-cat or was cat-cat transmission also involved?
  • Have there been less severe infections in cats?

The last one is a big one. Right now, we know little about the range of infections in cats (and other species). The risk calculus is a lot different if this is a virus that always causes severe/fatal disease vs one that can cause a range of disease. We are more likely to find severe disease, especially in wildlife and feral animals, because we don’t notice mild illness as well in those species, and very sick or dead animal are much more likely to be caught and tested.

  • If there was group of 10 dead cats, odds are pretty high that would be recognized and tested.
  • If there was a group of 10 cats with transient fever, cough and lethargy, that’s much less likely to be noticed.

That second group might be really important though.

From a population standpoint, a virus that kills consistently and quickly is generally less likely to spread compared to one that causes more mild, prolonged illness, especially if the animal is still moving around and interacting with other animals.

So, a big question we’ve had (and one we haven’t really been able to explore well around here yet because of logistical challenges) is whether severely ill cats are the norm for H5N1 spillovers or whether they are just the tip of the iceberg. If the latter, then we have a much greater need to figure out what the risk of spread from them is.

DJ, there is still mink farming in Poland...[url]https://www.furfreealliance.com/?s=poland[/url] or https://www.furfreealliance.com/?s=poland 

[url]https://www.furfreealliance.com/bill-to-ban-fur-farming-in-lithuania-passed-second-reading/[/url] or https://www.furfreealliance.com/bill-to-ban-fur-farming-in-lithuania-passed-second-reading/ besides that borders may not stop virus spreading....

[url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-possible-h5n1?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-possible-h5n1?view=stream 

DJ-For now there are lots of questions....Even IF !!! H5N1 would able to infect cats it may not become a major risk for humans yet....However H5N1 spread AND CoViD spreading in mammals is very high risk...

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 27 2023 at 8:41am

[url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/poland-vet-chief-h5n1-confirmed-in-dead.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/poland-vet-chief-h5n1-confirmed-in-dead.html ;

Notably, not only has H5N1 been confirmed in 9 of 11 cats tested, these samples have come from three widely separated regions of the country (Tri-City, Lubin, and Poznań).  

Although we've seen cats infected with H5N1 in the past (going back 20 years - see HPAI H5: Catch As Cats Can), including recent reports from the United States (see Nebraska Veterinary Diagnostic Center (NVDC) Report: 2 Domestic Cats Infected With HPAI H5N1), this appears to be an unusually large, and widespread outbreak. 

For now, the $64 question is how these cats are being infected, and whether cat-to-cat transmission is occurring. 

Stay tuned. 

and [url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/a-brief-history-of-avian-influenza-in.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/a-brief-history-of-avian-influenza-in.html 

[url]https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-spillover-in-cats-in-polandupdate/[/url] or https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-spillover-in-cats-in-polandupdate/ ;

By Scott Weese on 
POSTED IN CATS

Yesterday, I discussed a situation where avian flu was suspected in the deaths of a reasonably large number of cats in Poland. “We need more information” was a big part of that, and a few new things have come to light.

It’s now reported that H5N1 was detected in 9 of 11 samples from cats. Positive samples were from three different cities, which is a very important finding. A reasonably large number of cats affected (and this likely being the tip of the iceberg) from multiple different cities definitely raises concern, since this wasn’t just a situation where a group of cats got exposed to the same infected bird or group of birds. Bird-cat jumps happened multiple times in multiple locations, something that’s never good.

Why might there be a large number of affected cats?

The most logical explanation to me is that there’s a big outbreak of avian flu in birds that cats have more contact with, such as birds that live in cities and are more likely to be caught and eaten by cats. In parallel, there could be greater awareness so people are looking for and testing sick cats.

Regardless, this shows us we need to keep investigating. “Dozens” of cats is a pretty small number in the grand scheme, but it’s a lot for something that has been assumed to be a rare event, particularly considering we likely detect a small minority of spillover events into animals. Every spillover to mammals creates more opportunity for the virus to adapt to mammals (including humans) and if they are domestic animals or animals that people or domestic animals have contact with, spillovers increase the risk of human exposure. We’ve been fortunate that the serious impacts on mammals have, so far, avoided people. However, it’s dynamic situation and we need to be vigilant (but not paranoid).

  • We need continued research to figure out what’s happening.
  • We need to use basic preventive measures to reduce spillover into domestic animals.
  • We need to prioritize vaccine development for humans and domestic animals in case it’s  needed.

[url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-9-test-positive-for-h5n1-avian-flu?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-9-test-positive-for-h5n1-avian-flu?view=stream latest;

Translation Google

Avian flu among cats. Samples were tested

June 26, 2023 / 14:42

In 9 out of 11 samples taken from dead cats, the bird flu virus was confirmed, the Chief Veterinary Officer informed. The research was conducted by the State Veterinary Institute in Puławy.

Among the tested samples there are also those from two cats that died at the Clinic of the University of Life Sciences in Lublin.

- So far, these are the only cases of cats with influenza virus in our Clinic - says Professor Łukasz Adaszek from the Department of Epizootiology and the Clinic of Infectious Diseases at the University of Life Sciences in Lublin. – They were infected with the bird flu virus, strain H5N1. It begins with general symptoms, i.e. loss of appetite, apathy, weakness. Later, respiratory symptoms appear, i.e. severe shortness of breath, cough and neurological symptoms, i.e. uneven dilation of the pupils, convulsions.

The remaining samples came from dead cats from the Tri-City and Poznań.

The source of infection in cats is still unknown. Detailed studies of the genetic material of viruses are conducted by the State Veterinary Institute in Puławy.

- Unfortunately, we still have not been able to determine the source of infection - says the director of the National Veterinary Institute in Puławy, Professor Stanisław Winiarczyk. “These virus isolates are currently undergoing molecular characterization so that we have full knowledge of the subtype, type or variant of this virus. This will also be used for the epizootic investigation to determine the source of infection. At this point, we do not yet know where this virus came from, what path it traveled until it reached the cat. One thing we know for sure is that it is not a seagull virus.
...
The Chief Veterinary Officer also informed about the sanitary and epizootic meeting that was convened today to discuss further proceedings in the case of cat infections.

DJ, Very likely the most reasonable explanation may be the cats did catch H5N1 from eating infected (and dead ?) birds...No idea how many wild cats, lynx [url]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lynx[/url] or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lynx and abandoned dogs there are in Poland. Very likely the problem also may be in other East European countries. 

It DOES increase risks for humans....

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 29 2023 at 12:18am







7 more cats in Poland have died of H5N1 bird flu, raising the total to 16. It's still unknown how they're getting infected

and [url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/poland-vet-chief-at-least-16-cats.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/poland-vet-chief-at-least-16-cats.html ;

#17,516

We have a brief update from the Chief Veterinary Office in Poland - and while the math is a little fuzzy - it confirms the outbreak of H5N1 among cats in Poland is widespread.  Of 33 samples received by the State Veterinary Institute in Puławy - 19 have been tested - and 15 were positive for H5N1.   

Another positive test has been reported by the Warsaw University of Life Sciences (from Warsaw). While this report only mentions 16 positive findings, they indicate 20 outbreaks have been confirmed, which suggests other samples have tested positive in other labs.

Strikingly, positive results have come from as far afield as Gdańsk, Gdynia, Pruszcz Gdański, Lublin, Bydgoszcz and Poznań.  

While not officially confirmed, Pathfinder on FluTrackers has a media report indicating that two indoor cats in Poznań have tested positive for the virus, along with a warning not to feed cats raw chicken. 

-

For now, the exact route of infection isn't known (and may vary from one event to the next), and we've not seen any detailed genetic analysis of the virus.

Stay tuned. 

DJ [url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-at-least-16-test-positive-for-h5n1-avian-flu?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-at-least-16-test-positive-for-h5n1-avian-flu?view=stream may provide further updates...

My view; the most likely idea is cats can catch H5N1 from eating infected birds...spread from birds into cats-by eating infected birds- may be getting "better"...

-So far there seems to be NO !!!!! indication for cat-to-cat(or other pet) spread of H5N1

-The Polish cats that did see testing were very ill/died from the virus...unclear how many cats may have only mild or no symptoms...Most a-symptomatic spread of H5N1 in mammals/pets is a nightmare...it can mix with other virus...become a major risk...

-East of Poland is Ukraine/Belarus/Baltics...is it possible to look for cat-spread there ? 

-Mink-link with the cat-spread ? Do minks and cats have the same kind of H5N1 type of virus ? Could minks be involved ? 

-How much testing is done on wild animals-foxes, ferrets, lynx, wolves...Is there any H5N1 spread detected ? Or is it ignored ? DJ-Here in NL we have seen quite a lot of H5N1 in mammals...it is "out of control" in (wild) birds...Very likely there must be major spread of H5N1 in other mammals in Poland. Any pigs/swines yet ???? 

A very major problem may be farmers NOT reporting H5N1 in their farm animals out of fear for economic damage. So unclear how much further the H5N1 spread is in Poland/the region...

So far no human H5N1 case detected/reported (possibly via cat ?)....but it does NOT look good...the spread in cats is very wide...

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 01 2023 at 1:41am

[url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream (latest);

Originally posted by Pathfinder View Post
Translation Google

...

“Consecutive, thorough research gives us important information,” says the director of the Institute, Prof. Stanislaw Winiarczyk. – Those viruses that were identified in the samples are the closest to the viruses that were isolated from wild birds and poultry in 2020-2023. They show the highest relationship to the virus that was detected in the white stork at the beginning of June in the Tarnów district. Importantly, molecular analysis indicates the presence of mutations that may enhance the adaptation of the virus to mammals.

...

https://radio.lublin.pl/2023/06/prze...grypa-u-kotow/

-

"The course of the disease is electrifying." Avian flu in cats

June 29, 2023 / 17:17

So far, 16 outbreaks of avian influenza virus in cats have been confirmed in Poland, informs the Chief Veterinary Officer. The pathogen was found in 20 out of 33 samples delivered to the National Veterinary Institute in Puławy. Most of the cats died.

The services appeal to the owners to be careful and at the same time reassure: so far no case of transmission of the virus from cat to human has been recorded in the world.

The bird flu virus can be very dangerous

As experts say: the bird flu virus can be very dangerous. In humans, the mortality rate is 50-60%. However, over the years, only 1,000 cases of human infection with the H5N1 (bird flu) virus have been recorded.

- The probability of human disease is negligible, but it is always there. However, special circumstances are needed for this - says prof. Agnieszka Szuster-Ciesielska from the Department of Virology and Immunology of the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University. “For example, the transmission of this virus from birds requires very close human presence. Most often, infections occurred in the owners of chicken farms.

However, no such case has been reported with regard to human infection by a cat. Such infection is made difficult because cats do not shed much of this virus. If there are too few of these viruses, the symptoms of the disease do not develop, says Prof. Agnieszka Szuster-Ciesielska.


Samples taken from dead animals are analyzed at the National Veterinary Institute in Puławy. In total, dozens of such samples have been sent there so far.

“This is disturbing news”

“Consecutive, thorough research gives us important information,” says the director of the Institute, Prof. Stanislaw Winiarczyk. – Those viruses that were identified in the samples are the closest to the viruses that were isolated from wild birds and poultry in 2020-2023. They show the highest relationship to the virus that was detected in the white stork at the beginning of June in the Tarnów district. Importantly, molecular analysis indicates the presence of mutations that may enhance the adaptation of the virus to mammals.

This is worrying information, admit veterinarians. It is still not known what was the source of infection in the dead cats.

The course of the disease is electrifying

“The worst thing is not knowing. The course of the disease is staggering - says veterinarian Robert Czerniak from the Lublin Center for Small Animals in Lublin, where one case of an infected cat was recorded. – Symptoms include both upper and lower respiratory tract infection, i.e. pneumonia, but they can also appear in the form of inflammation and dysfunction of other organs and systems, such as the digestive system. However, this applies primarily to neurological symptoms, including convulsive seizures, impaired coordination of movements, and limited consciousness. In addition, a high fever can be a problem.

What's worse, the treatment of this type of cases has so far been only symptomatic and very difficult.

- It was so that some symptoms developed, we "quenched" them to some extent, but others appeared. Unfortunately, it was a slippery slope,” adds Robert Czerniak.
-

One of the hypotheses regarding the ways in which cats can be infected with avian flu is that related to the digestive route. – There is an astonishing coincidence in time, because in a short period of time there were outbreaks of infection in cats in remote locations. This would indicate a common denominator, i.e. one or two sources that reached these locations. In my opinion, it could be feed or a batch of infected meat - believes Prof. Agnieszka Szuster-Ciesielska.

However, for now, these are only guesses. The source of infection is to be determined by an epidemiological investigation.

-

[url]https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-in-cats-in-poland-another-update-and-musing-about-causes/[/url] or https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2023/06/articles/animals/cats/h5n1-avian-flu-in-cats-in-poland-another-update-and-musing-about-causes/ ;

A mix of these

This might be an explanation for some of the “indoor” cat infections. For example, if there’s a cluster of infections in outdoor cats that’s predominantly or solely bird-to-cat transmission, with maybe some cat-to-cat transmission. But how, if a cat is truly indoor only? Well, it’s maybe a stretch but the picture below of cats facing off through a window is one I put on Twitter the other day, as a reminder that indoor cats need to be vaccinated since they can still have close encounters with outdoor cats. For affected indoor cats, if food is largely ruled out, I’d query the household situation, such as are there screened windows or some other way to have close contact with any outdoor cats (or other cats in the household that do go outside).

Hopefully the investigation will generate some more information. It’s important for us to know more about transmission pathways and risks, both for cat health and to assess risks to other species (including humans).

DJ, Worms & Germs Blog rules out cat food as a main cause...but it could be a mix of infection by eating infected bird(droppings), bird-to-cat spread...cat-to-cat has not been proven yet...

[url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/ecdc-risk-assessment-avian-influenza-in.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/06/ecdc-risk-assessment-avian-influenza-in.html 

So far we've only seen reports of mass cat infections from Poland, but that could easily change.  Hopefully neighboring countries are ramping up surveillance, although that likely isn't an option in Ukraine right now. 

For more on the difficulties of detecting novel flu cases in the community, you may wish to revisit UK Novel Flu Surveillance: Quantifying TTD.  

On Monday of this week the ECDC released timely Guidance: Enhanced Surveillance of Severe Avian Influenza Virus Infections in Hospital Settings, and last week the CDC presented a COCA Call for clinicians on  What Providers Need to Know about Zoonotic Influenza.

Stay tuned. 

DJ so a few questions;

-Is the spread still ongoing ?

-Is it in cats and birds (with white stork virus very close to the virus detected in infected cats)

-Other countries (Germany, Denmark) will be testing...very likely may detect spread 

-How the virus may develop further (in cats, storks, fox etc)? 

Replying to 
Poland: 9 cats have officially tested positive for H5N1, but there are dozens of possible cases being reported in Polish press. https://wetgiw.gov.pl/main/komunikaty/Komunikat-III-GLW-w-sprawie-choroby-kotow/idn:2283

DJ...numbers are not that clear 16 or 20 infected cats ? Very likely more will be detected...(but it could stop without getting much answers...).

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 02 2023 at 5:58am
Brazil: Three cases of H5N1 bird flu in humans  under investigation. 128 cases of possible infection notified, 125 cases discarded, three cases still outstanding in Espírito Santo. https://esbrasil.com.br/espirito-santo-ja-investigou-125-casos-de-gripe-aviaria-em-humanos/

-DJ, So far (as I know) Brazil did not detect human H5N1 cases [url]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020%E2%80%932023_H5N1_outbreak[/url] or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020%E2%80%932023_H5N1_outbreak 

---------

[url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/cdc-updated-technical-report-highly.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/cdc-updated-technical-report-highly.html ;

  • Currently, HPAI A(H5N1) viruses circulating in birds are believed to pose a low risk to the health of the general public in the United States; however, people who have job-related or recreational exposures to infected birds may be at higher risk of infection and should take appropriate precautions outlined in CDC guidance.
  • Comprehensive surveillance and readiness efforts are ongoing, and CDC continually takes preparedness measures to be ready in case the risk to people from HPAI A(H5N1) or other novel influenza A viruses changes.

DJ...it would be very welcome if more info was available on H5N1 spread in mammals...

----------------

[url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream latest;

Avian influenza A/H5N1 in cats. Prof. Pyrć: worried that there are numerous infections among animals that accompany humans

EWA KURZYŃSKA SPOKE published: today, 01-07-2023, 11:36

A/H5N1 in cats in Poland: "We have made the first sequence of the virus public and we are currently making efforts to characterize it as soon as possible" - says in an interview for "Puls Medycyny" prof. Krzysztof Pyrć, virologist, leader of the Virology Laboratory at the Małopolska Center of Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University.

Will A/H5N1, isolated from cats in Poland, be sequenced and checked for possible mutations and their significance for the potential transmission or virulence of the virus?

We have already made the first sequence of the virus public and we are currently making efforts to characterize it as soon as possible. We work together with colleagues from Gdańsk - dr. hab. Maciej Grzybek and Dr. Łukasz Rąbalski. This significantly increases efficiency, especially since our experiences are complementary.
-

So this virus is becoming more transmissible?

Not yet, but there are signs that this may happen. Nobody wants a "repeat of entertainment" from the last three years, when a new, dangerous respiratory virus appeared and paralyzed reality. However, I have the impression that we are all so tired of the topic of COVID that we are reluctant to hear about another potential threat.

What is happening now in cats is a consequence of the events of the last 20 years. It is worrying that for the first time there are numerous infections among animals that accompany humans. Because while we do not hug sea lions, we do not have close contact with them, in the case of cats this close contact is guaranteed. At the same time, I want to make it clear that the risk is not high, but also not zero; it's worth keeping common sense.

How can cats get avian flu?

This is currently the most important task for veterinary services to determine the transmission routes of the virus. It needs to be identified for several reasons. Firstly, to minimize the number of sick cats and limit the evolution of the virus, but also to check that humans cannot fall victim to the same source.

There are several possibilities. Or cats get infected directly from birds, which is relatively unlikely, considering that cats who did not leave the house at all were also affected. The A/H5N1 virus can be transmitted through contact, i.e. in the mud that we bring into the house, there can be feces of sick animals. Then the fecal-oral route of infection is possible. A third possibility is that the source of the virus was food, possibly contaminated feed, such as meat.

Heat treatment of meat or eggs effectively kills the virus we are talking about?

Yes. This is a virus that is relatively sensitive to external factors, just like the coronavirus. It is an RNA virus, i.e. its genetic material is in the form of less stable nucleic acid. In addition, it is an enveloped virus, which means that it is covered with a protein-lipid membrane that is sensitive to detergents, but also to chemical and physical factors. All this makes influenza viruses easy to neutralize with simple methods. In the case of meat, heat treatment is effective. I would like to make it clear here that we should behave adequately to the situation and not fall into paranoia. Let's wash our hands if the pet is sick or we are dealing with raw meat, but let's not spill hectoliters of disinfectants on ourselves.

Do we have the tools to fight the A/H5N1 virus should it appear in humans?

Here, the situation is favorable because in the case of influenza virus, diagnostic tests are available, even quick ones. Second, there is a targeted vaccine that should theoretically work. Third, there are antivirals that should work. Why am I repeating the word "should" several times? Because the flu virus changes very quickly. And if someone thinks that SARS-CoV-2 mutated quickly, that it was impossible to keep up with it, the flu virus in this competition wins with it in the pre-runs. The rate of evolution of the influenza virus is much faster. We see this very clearly every year when attention is drawn to use the vaccine for the season, because last year's vaccine may not be effective. It can be assumed that the vaccine that was developed against influenza A/H5N1 many years ago may be ineffective. Second, we don't have enough that everyone should be vaccinated immediately if necessary. 

DJ...my -non expert- view; H5N1 very likely on its way to become a bigger problem....

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 03 2023 at 11:50pm

[url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/polands-national-veterinary-institute.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/polands-national-veterinary-institute.html ;

Missing from this report is any mention of amino acid changes (mutations) that might signal increased adaptation to mammals. Something that has been reported in other feline infections (see EID Journal: HPAI A(H5N1) Clade 2.3.4.4b Virus in Domestic Cat, France, 2022). 

This possibility was mentioned in last Friday's ECDC Risk Assessment (see excerpt below).

Media sources from Poland cite the director of the National Veterinary Institute in Puławy stating that "they have detected two mutations that indicate that the A(H5N1) virus is evolving to multiply more easily in mammals"

I expect we'll get a more detailed analysis in the next couple of days.  In the meantime, while a single source has been implicated, it still isn't clear how both indoor and outdoor cats from across a wide swath of Poland are contracting the virus. 

DJ on the spread;

[url]https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream[/url] or https://flutrackers.com/forum/forum/europe/h5n1-tracking/poland/975746-poland-media-reports-of-unusual-cat-deaths-june-21-2023-reportedly-influenza-ecdc-risk-assessment-offlu-statement?view=stream latest;

Bird flu in poultry meat from shops to dying cats

Poultry meat can be a source of the bird flu virus, which has recently affected and died many cats in Poland. - Our results show the presence of the virus in one of the five delivered meat samples that sick cats received. At the moment, we are unable to say where it came from in the meat and whether it was the source of infection in cats or whether it got there from sick animals. However, taking into account the risk associated with the transmission of the virus not only to animals, but also to humans, it is certainly a lead that requires a thorough check. This is a task for veterinary services and sanitary supervision - said in an interview with 'GW' virologist Prof. Krzysztof Pyrć, whose team dealt with meat testing.

As the expert explained, 'the H5N1 virus is poorly transmitted between mammals, so the risk of infection directly from cats is practically impossible'. 'To become infected, a person would have to eat raw or undercooked meat. But it can also pass to a human who touches meat with his bare hand. - The disease in humans can be extremely severe, and in the last 20 years, more than half of the more than 800 infected people have died,' the scientist explained in an interview with 'Wyborca'.

-

According to Dr. Cats are particularly at risk of H5N1 infection during the three-year epidemic in Europe, due to the fact that they often come into contact with bird meat. Outgoing and free-living individuals often hunt birds, and besides, many owners feed their animals with raw food, also based on bird meat.

“Infection can occur both through the consumption of wild birds, which are hunted by cats that are freely released outside the house, and poultry, which are obtained by animals fed with raw meat or looking for food leftovers in garbage cans. In addition, H5N1 is excreted with faeces, so contact with them can also lead to infection' - says the professor of UMP.

The expert emphasizes that for now there is no possibility of transmission of the virus from a cat to another cat, dog or human. “We have cases of infection in various places in Poland. So they are all independent introductions; there is no proven case of an infected cat spreading the virus further. These animals became infected independently of each other, but probably from a common source, given that we are talking about cases that occurred over a short period of time,” he explains.

In his opinion, it is important to determine as soon as possible whether the source is wild or farmed birds. 'The H5N1 virus can occur in both of them' - explains the scientist. 'Clarification of this issue is extremely important to slow the emergence of new cases and limit further risks to public health.'

So it looks like infected poultry may have baan a major source. Poultry-food to cat spread...

Poland did import a lot of agri-culture products from Ukraine. Did the infected poultry also come from Ukraine-missed quality/health control in that way ? 

----------------------

Can a dog get cat disease? We asked the vet

David Piatkowski
2023-07-02
15:15

Cat flu attacks. Many shelters, clinics and veterinarians have already informed about the threat on social media. A mysterious disease - probably caused by a mutation of bird flu - affecting cats is supposed to be harmless to humans. But what about other animals? Can the virus spread to dogs? Our readers ask. We asked the vets. Details below.
...
We managed to talk to one of Bydgoszcz veterinarians. As we heard, the National Veterinary Institute in Puławy is still conducting research on the disease of cats. To date, no cases of infection in dogs have been reported. We obtained the same information from another veterinary clinic in the province of Kuyavian-Pomeranian.

- Yesterday we had another meeting on this matter in our hospital, during which the subject of cat disease was discussed. The current situation was discussed. It said there have been no cases or reports of transmission from cat to dog at this time. We are constantly monitoring and controlling the situation. Both us in the clinic and state authorities - says Rafał Kwiatkowski, manager of one of the veterinary clinics.
...
This is also confirmed by specific cases. As the reader informed us - the disease was caught by her neighbor's cat from Osowa Góra in Bydgoszcz. The pet died. There was also a dog in the house. Nothing happened to him.

A similar situation took place in one of the towns in the Wielkopolskie Voivodship. In a detached house, all the cats died of the disease, and there were several of them. The family also has two dogs. They are safe.

DJ, wild animals (including street cats, street dogs) eat infected birds and may catch H5N1 in that way...It could result in disease...So far minks did show very major mink-to-mink spread. Other mammals may see less risks for spreading H5N1...(maybe still a risk in droppings, animals eating dead infected mammals ?) 

If-indeed-most of the Polish cats did get infected via food it may limit risks...Did some infected (imported ???) poultry end up for human consumption ? Or as pig food ? 

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
Dutch Josh View Drop Down
Adviser Group
Adviser Group


Joined: May 01 2013
Location: Arnhem-Netherla
Status: Offline
Points: 92327
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dutch Josh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 26 2023 at 1:08am
South Korea: 38 cats dead from avian influenza 40 cats were being protected at a private cat shelter in Seoul, and from the 24th of last month, the cats started dying due to high fever and loss of appetite, and 38 cats died in one month.

and [url]https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/south-korea-mafra-press-release-on-h5n1.html[/url] or https://afludiary.blogspot.com/2023/07/south-korea-mafra-press-release-on-h5n1.html ;

Updated 0920 EDT 

There are unconfirmed reports of cats dying at this shelter for several weeks.  While the official number of cats infected sits at 2, it would not be surprising if more infections are discovered as this investigation continues.


#17,572

South Korea has a lot of experience with avian H5Nx viruses, and takes them very seriously. In 2014, as H5N1 was in a steep decline, a new, highly virulent H5N8 virus emerged in Korean poultry (likely introduced by migratory birds from China or Siberia) that began H5's resurgence, and eventual spread around the globe.


In 2014, and again in 2015, dogs on South Korea farms showed signs of HPAI infection (see MAFRA: H5N8 Antibodies Detected In South Korean Dogs (Again)), and in 2018 we looked at a report of H5N6 in domestic cats (see EID Journal: HPAI H5N6 In Domestic Cats - Korea, 2016).
 
Also in late 2016, we saw the outbreak of H7N2 in hundreds of cats in New York City  (see EID Journal: Avian H7N2 Virus in Human Exposed to Sick Cats), which spilled over into several humans.
Over the past month, we've been following the slow-rolling release of information on H5N1 in cats in Poland (see CDC Statement On H5N1 In Domestic Cats - Poland).
Today South Korea's Ministry of Agriculture (MAFRA) has announced the detection, and their rapid response, to two cats infected with H5N1 at an animal shelter in Seoul.

-

The H5N1 genotype, or strain, in South Korea likely differs from the one in Poland's cats (or in foxes in Finland), but this event could shed more light on how well the virus spreads between cats.  

It is also a reminder that the panoply of H5Nx viruses around the globe are constantly testing their boundaries, and we should expect more surprises ahead.

Stay tuned. 

DJ...so now 38 South Korean cats test positive for H5N1 ? Not that long after H5N1 was found in "lots of" Polish cats.....

[url]https://en.yna.co.kr/view/AEN20230726002900320?section=national/national[/url] or https://en.yna.co.kr/view/AEN20230726002900320?section=national/national ;

SEOUL, July 26 (Yonhap) -- Two cats at an animal shelter in Seoul were confirmed to have been infected with a highly pathogenic avian influenza strain, marking the first infections of the virus in mammals in seven years, the agriculture ministry has said.

Cats have been found dead at the shelter in Yongsan, central Seoul, since last month, and tests confirmed that two of them died of the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain of avian influenza (AI), according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs on Tuesday.

It is the first time since 2016 that the country confirmed highly pathogenic AI cases in mammals.

Upon the report, the authorities cordoned off the facility and have implemented quarantine measures.

People who have had contact with the cats have not shown any symptoms, and there has not been a human AI infection through cats or other mammals.

But the health authorities are closely monitoring them, as the incubation period for human AI cases is known to be 10 days, the ministry said.

DJ, H5N1 in Polish cats may be linked to infected raw poultry given as cat-food. However if in two countries far from each other we do see larger number of cats testing positive/dying from H5N1 it may be time to increase monitoring worldwide...

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
~Albert Einstein
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down