Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, among other scientists in the U.S., proposed their plan to examine the H7N9 strain of avian influenza that killed 43 people in China earlier this year, according to sources.

The proposed experimentation, announced via a letter published in the journals Nature and Science on August 7, would make the H7N9 avian influenza virus more transmissible in labs to predict how it might evolve in nature and what it would take for the virus to spread efficiently from poultry to people.

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The goal of the research is to enhance surveillance of the H7N9 virus and develop countermeasures, such as vaccines, in case of a re-emergence of the deadly strain of avian influenza.