China’s National Health Commission (NHC) announced on Tuesday that the country’s eastern Jiangsu province has detected the first human infection with the H10N3 strain of avian flu.
The patient, a 41-year-old man in Zhenjiang city, developed fever and other symptoms on April 23 and was hospitalised on April 28, Xinhua news agency quoted the NHC as saying.
He was diagnosed as having the H10N3 avian influenza virus on May 28, it said, but did not give details on how the man had been infected with the virus.
The man was stable and ready to be discharged from hospital. All close contacts of the patient in Jiangsu have been placed under medical observation and emergency monitoring has been initiated, said the NHC, adding that nothing abnormal has been detected.
There are many different strains of avian influenza in China and some sporadically infect people, generally those working with poultry.
The strain is “not a very common virus,” said Filip Claes, regional laboratory coordinator of the Food and Agriculture Organization’s Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases at the Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific.
Only around 160 isolates of the virus were reported in the 40 years to 2018, mostly in wild birds or waterfowl in Asia and some limited parts of North America, and none had been detected in chickens so far, he added.