by Beth Galvin
ATLANTA – As the U.S. flu season winds down, scientists in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Atlanta flu lab are focused on finding the next pandemic flu threat.
And they’re watching a deadly strain of bird flu in China.
“There are features of this strain that are worrisome,” says CDC Acting Director Dr. Anne Schuchat.
She’s talking about the H7N9 bird flu, which began spreading from poultry to people in 2013, with lethal consequences.
“And while this is the fifth year of seeing the disease, this year has been worse than any of the previous ones in China,” Dr. Schuchat says.
So far, in the fifth outbreak alone, the World Health Organization says 623 people have been sickened.
That brings the total of lab-confirmed H7N9 infections to 1,421 since 2013.
Most of those infected had been exposed to poultry, but there were some…
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