Southeast Asian researchers work to contain H5N1

Scientists: smuggling contributes to spread

Southeast Asian researchers hope to contain the spread of H5N1 avian influenza by identifying poultry smuggling routes, according to Reuters news agency. Disease and agriculture experts from five countries met in Kunming, China, to develop a plan.

Unregistered, informal trading and more organized smuggling appear to be especially prevalent along the Cambodian border with Thailand and Vietnam.

In the past year, the H5N1 virus has killed people in China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Egypt. Although transmission from birds to humans is relatively rare, the disease poses a threat because it kills 60% of people who contract it, the agency reported.

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