Deadly Bird Flu Strain H7N9 Could be Next Pandemic

The Extinction Chronicles

A CDC Scientist harvests H7N9 virus that has been grown for sharing with partner laboratories for research purposes. Photo: CDC

It’s been a century since the last worldwide influenza pandemic. The Spanish Influenza of 1918 spread across the globe in the waning days of World War I, killing tens of millions of people.

The next pandemic-level strain could be brewing in China, according to health officials. It’s a bird flu strain that has demonstrated 41 percent mortality in recent epidemics. Currently in its fifth epidemic, it’s become more widespread than ever – and it’s changing, according to world health officials.

The good news is that the H7N9 virus has so far shown limited human-to-human transmission. The bad news is that this fifth epidemic of the influenza strain, though mostly transmitted by poultry, is the…

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