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H5N8 HPAI GLOBAL situation update (FAO, April 04, 2018)

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  • H5N8 HPAI GLOBAL situation update (FAO, April 04, 2018)

    H5N8 HPAI GLOBAL situation update

    04 April 2018, 17:00 hours; Rome

    The next update will be issued on 03 May 2018


    Information provided herein is current as of the date of issue. Information added or changed since the last H5N8 situation update appears in red. Human cases are depicted in the geographic location of their report. For some cases, exposure may have occurred in one geographic location but reported in another. For cases with unknown onset date, reporting date was used instead. FAO compiles information drawn from multiple national (Ministries of Agriculture or Livestock, Ministries of Health, Provincial Government websites; Centers for Disease Prevention and Control [CDC]) and international sources (World Health Organization [WHO], World Organisation for Animal Health [OIE]) as well as peer-reviewed scientific articles. FAO makes every effort to ensure, but does not guarantee, accuracy, completeness or authenticity of the information. The designation employed and the presentation of material on the map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of FAO concerning the legal or constitutional status of any country, territory or sea area, or concerning the delimitation of frontiers.


    Situation: H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) 2016 virus in Africa, Asia, Europe and Middle East with pandemic potential.
    Confirmed countriesx: Austria*, Belgium*, Bosnia and Herzegovina*,Bulgaria*, Cameroon*, China, Croatia*, Cyprus, the Czech Republic*, Democratic Republic of the Congo*, Denmark*, Egypt*, Finland, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, France*, Germany*, Greece*, Hungary*, India*, Iran (Islamic Republic of)*, Iraq*, Ireland, Israel*, Italy*, Kazakhstan, the Republic of Korea*, Kuwait*, Lithuania, Luxembourg*,Nepal*, the Netherlands*, Niger*, Nigeria*, Pakistan, Poland*, Portugal, Romania*, Russian Federation*, Saudi Arabia*, Serbia*, Slovakia*, Slovenia, South Africa*, Spain*, Sweden*, Switzerland, Tunisia, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland*, Uganda*, Ukraine* and Zimbabwe*.

    Number of human cases: None reported to date.

    x Reports of H5N8 HPAI events in Taiwan, Province of China, are not included in this update since the virus belongs to a genetically different strain.
    * Countries in which the virus was detected in poultry.
    Map 1. H5N8 HPAI events officially reported in Asia, Europe and Africa by onset date

    Click to enlarge - Note: The large map shows confirmed H5N8 HPAI events observed since 01 October 2017; the small map in the insert shows confirmed events observed between 01 June 2016 and 30 September 2017 by a blue dot (?)

    Map 2. Global context: H5Nx HPAI events officially reported worldwide between 01 October 2017 and 04 April 2018
    Click to enlarge

    Figure 1. Phylogenetic relationships of A(H5) clade HA genes from WHO?s Vaccine Composition Meeting Report, February 2018 [reference]
    Click to enlarge - There is considerable genetic diversity in viruses of clade The A(H5N8) viruses cluster from the period October 2016 to September 2017 has HA gene segments that are phylogenetically distinct from the cluster of viruses isolated in Asia during the period in 2013-2014. Initially, H5N8 viruses have been reported mostly from Anatidae (wild and domestic), but since 2017 outbreak reports in domestic birds such as chicken and turkey have increased H5N8. Current viruses (e.g. viruses isolated in Italy) are genetically similar to those of 2016/17. Additional information: NA subtypes other than N1 are specified. The scale bar represents the number of substitutions per site. Bootstrap supports of topology are shown above selected nodes. A/Anhui/1/2005 (clade 2.3.4) is used to root the tree. Human viruses are in bold font. The available Candidate Vaccine Viruses (CVV) are in red. The proposed CVV is indicated by a red dot (?). The viruses tested in haemagglutination inhibition assay are indicated by hashes (#).

    Domestic birds species affected
    Anas platyrhynchos domesticus (Duck) Anserinae sp. (Goose) Gallus gallus domesticus (Chicken)
    Meleagris gallopavo (Turkey)
    Farmed wildlife species affected
    (Private collections, displays or production)
    Dromaius novaeollandiae (Emu) Pavo cristatus (Peacock) Rhea americana (Greater Rhea)
    Grus paradisea (Blue Crane) Perdicinae (Partridge) Struthio camelus (Ostrich)
    Numida meleagris (Common Guineafowl) Phasianus colchicus (Common Pheasant)
    Wild Birds species affected
    Involved in transmission
    Anas clypeata (Northern Shoveler) Anser anser (Greylag Goose) Cygnus columbianus (Tundra Swan)
    Anas crecca (Common Teal) Anser brachyrhynchus (Pink-footed Goose) Cygnus cygnus (Whooper swan)
    Anas falcata (Falcated Duck) Anser fabalis (Been Goose) Cygnus olor (Mute Swan)
    Anas penelope (Eurasian Wigeon) Aythya ferina (Common Pochard) Marmaronetta angustirostris (Marbled teal)
    Anas platyrhynchos (Mallard) Aythya fuligula (Tufted Duck) Netta rufina (Red-crested Pochard)
    Anas strepera (Gadwall) Aythya nyroca (Ferruginous Pochard) Tadorna tadorna (Common Shelduck)
    Anas undulata (Yellow-billed Duck) Aythyinae or Anatinae sp. (Wild Duck)
    Anser albifrons (Greater White-fronted Goose) Bucephala clangula (Common Goldeneye)
    Accidental hosts
    Alopochen aegyptiaca (Egyptian Goose) Columbidae sp. (Pigeon) Platalea leucorodia (Eurasian Spoonbill)
    Anser erythropus (Lesser white-fronted goose) Cygnus atratus (Black Swan) Plectopterus gambensis (Spur-winged Goose)
    Ara cloropterus (Green and red macaw) Egretta garzetta (Little Egret) Plegadis falcinellus (Glossy Ibis)
    Ardea alba (Great Egret) Fulica atra (Common Coot) Ploceus velatus (Southern Masked-Weaver)
    Ardea cinerea (Grey Heron) Gallinula chloropus (Common Moorhen) Podiceps cristatus (Great Cested Grebe)
    Ardea melanocephala (Black-headed Heron) Grus grus (Common Crane) Recurvirostra avosetta (Pied avocet)
    Balearica regulorum (Crowned crane) Grus japonensis (Red-crowned Crane) Somateria mollissima (Eider)
    Botaurus stellaris (Eurasian bittern) Himantopus himantopus (Black-winged Stilt) Spheniscus demersus (Jackass Penguin)
    Branta canadensis (Canada Goose) Lonchura sp. (Munia) Sterna hirundo (Common Tern)
    Bubulcus ibis (Western Cattle Egret) Mycteria leucocephala (Painted Stork) Streptopella senegalensis (Laughing Dove)
    Cairina moschata (Muscovy Duck) Numenius arquata (Eurasian Curlew) Streptopella decaocto (Eurasian Collared Dove)
    Calidris minuta (Little stint) Numenius sp.( Curlew) Sturnus vulgaris (Common Starling)
    Charadrius alexandrines (Kentish Plover) Passer domesticus (House Sparrow) Tachybaptus ruficollis (Little Grebe)
    Charadrius dubius (Little ringed plover) Pavo cristatus (Indian Peafowl) Thalasseus bergii (Swift tern)
    Charadrius hiaticula (Common ringed plover) Pelecanus onocrotalus (Great White Pelican) Thalasseus sandvicensis (Sandwich Tern)
    Chlidonias leucoptera (White-winged Black Tern) Pelecanus sp. (Pelican) Threskiornis aethiopicus (Sacred Ibis)
    Ciconia ciconia (White Stork) Phalacrocorax capensis (Cape Cormorant) Tringa glareola (Wood Sandpiper)
    Ciconiidae sp. (Stork) Phalacrocorax carbo (Great Cormorant) Tringa ochropus (Green Sandpiper)
    Columba guinea (African rock pigeon) Phalacrocorax pygmaeus (Pygmy Cormorant) Turdus merula (Eurasian Blackbird)
    Columba palumbus (Common Wood-Pigeon) Philomachus pugnax (Ruff) Turdus philomelos (Song Thrush)
    Columbia livia (Rock Pigeon) Phoenicopterus roseus (Greater Flamingo) Turdus pilaris (Fieldfare)
    Scavenger birds and birds of prey
    Accipiter gentilis (Northern Goshawk) Corvus cornix (Hooded Crow) Larus argentatus (Herring Gull)
    Accipiter nisus (Eurasian Sparrowhawk) Corvus frugilegus (Rook) Larus fuscus (Lesser Black-backed Gull)
    Accipiter nisus (Eurasian Sparrowhawk) Corvus sp. (Crow) Larus marinus (Great black-backed Gull)
    Asio otus (Long Eared Owl) Falco cherrug (Saker Falcon) Larus michahellis (Yellow-legged Gull)
    Bubo africanus (Spotted Eagle-Owl) Falco peregrinus (Peregrine Falcon) Pica pica (Common Magpie)
    Bubo bubo (Eurasian Eagle-Owl) Falco tinnunculus (Common Kestrel) Strigiformes (Owl)
    Buteo buteo (Common Buzzard) Falco vespertinus (Red-footed Falcon) Sula capensis (Cape Gannet)
    Buteo rufofuscus (Jackal Buzzard) Falco vespertinus (Red-footed Falcon) Tyto alba (Common Barn-Owl)
    Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus (Grey Headed Gull) Haliaeetus albicilla (White Tailed Eagle)
    Chroicocephalus hartlaubii (Hartlaub?s Gull) Laridae (Gull)
    Chroicocephalus ridibundus (Black-headed Gull) Larus argentatus (Herring Gull)
    Corvus albidae (Pied Crow) Larus armenicus (Armenian Gull)
    Corvus Corax (Common Raven) Larus canus (Mew Gull)
    Note: For each bird species, common name, genus and species name are listed. Species in subcategories are listed in alphabetic order, by their Latin name.Note: For each bird species, common name, genus and species name are listed. Species in subcategories are listed in alphabetic order, by their Latin name.

    FAO's support to countries

    Global level

    • Report of the WHO Vaccine Composition Meeting February 2018 [link] and September 2017 [link]
    • A webinar titled Intercontinental spread of H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza ? Analysis of the current situation and recommendations for preventive action, targeting national veterinary services and FAO regional and country teams, was conducted by FAO on 24 November 2016 [link]
    • EMPRES Watch, September 2016: H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) of clade detected through surveillance of wild migratory birds in the Tyva Republic, the Russian Federation ? potential for international spread [link]
    • EMPRES news, 4 November 2016: H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza detected in Hungary and in the Republic of India H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza detected in Hungary and in the Republic of India [link]
    Regional level

    • FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia news, November 2016: Highly pathogenic avian influenza spreading in Europe, South Asia [link]
    • FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia news, September 2016: Emergent Avian Influenza virus detected in surveillance of migratory birds in Russian Federation (FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia news [link]

    Recent Publications

    Napp S., Maj? N., S?nchez-G?nzalez R., Vergara-Alert, J. Emergence and spread of highly pathogenic avian influenza A(H5N8) in Europe in 2016-2017. Transboundary Emerging Diseases. 2018 March 14. doi: 10.1111/tbed.12861. [reference]. The study describes the epidemiology of H5N8 wave affecting Europe during 2016/2017. While some similarities with previous HPAI virus epidemics were observed, e.g. in the pattern of emergence, significant differences were also patent, in particular the size and extent of the epidemic. Even though no human infections have been reported to date, the fact that A/H5N8 has affected so far 1,112 domestic holdings, increases the risk of exposure of hmans and therefore represents a concern.

    Kwon H.I., Kim E.H., Kim Y.I., Park S.J., Si Y.J., Lee I.W., [?], Choi Y.K. Comparison of the pathogenic potential of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N6, and H5N8 viruses isolated in South Korea during the 2016-2017 winter season. Emerging Microbes and Infections. 2018 March 14;7(1):29. doi: 10.1038/s41426-018-0029-x. [reference]. The study aims to characterize two representative viruses, A/Environment/Korea/W541/2016 (H5N6) and A/Common Teal/Korea/W555/2017 (H5N8), and evaluate their zoonotic potential in various animal models. Both viruses are novel reassortants derived from various gene pools of wild bird viruses present in migratory waterfowl arising from eastern China. The viruses were able to grow in human respiratory tract tissues. The H5N6 was found to be highly pathogenic in both chickens and ducks, while the H5N8 virus caused lethal infections in chickens but did not induce remarkable clinical illness in ducks. In mice, both viruses appeared to be moderately pathogenic and displayed limited tissue tropism relative to HPAI H5N1 viruses. The H5N8 isolate was less pathogenic than the H5N6 isolate in ferrets and no transmission was detected.

    Thanh H.D., Tran V.T., Nguyen D.T., **** V.K., Kim W. Novel reassortant H5N6 highly pathogenic influenza A viruses in Vietnamese quail outbreaks. Comparative Immunology, Microbiology & Infectious Diseases. 2018 Feb;56:45-57. doi: 10.1016/j.cimid.2018.01.001. [reference]. The whole genome analysis of two H5N6 isolates collected from dead quails in Central Viet Nam in 2015 indicated that HA, NA and PB2 genes of the two H5N6 viruses are most closely related to an H5N2 virus and H10N6 virus from China and an H6N6 virus from Japan. The HA gene of the isolates belongs to clade, which caused human fatalities in China during 2014-2016. The five other internal genes showed high identity to an H5N2 virus from China. A whole-genome phylogenetic analysis revealed that these two outbreak strains are novel H6N6-like PB2 gene reassortants that are most closely related to influenza virus strain which was detected in a live poultry market in China in 2015.

    Geerlings E.C.L., Heffernan C. Predicting risk of avian influenza A(H5N1) in Egypt: the creation of a community level metric. BMC Public Health. 2018 March 21;18(1):388. doi: 10.1186/s12889-018-5288-x. [reference]. The study addresses the lack of understanding of the inter-play of drivers, conditions and motives that influence preventive behaviors at the household level regarding H5N1 avian influenza virus. A Composite Risk Index (CRI) was developed to inform decision-makers of critical epidemiological, livelihood, food security and risk perception factors that were found to contribute to A(H5N1) vulnerability at the community level. Poverty, widowhood and lack of education were among the factors associated with high risk scores. The aim of the tool is to enable targeting those communities that are likely to be highly vulnerable to A(H5N1) outbreaks and where control and awareness-raising efforts are expected to be most effective.

    Sun L., Ward M.P., Li R., Xia C., Lynn H., Hu Y., Xiong C., Zhang Z. Global spatial risk pattern of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 virus in wild birds: A knowledge-fusion based approach. Preventive Veterinary Medicine. 2018 April 1;152:32-39. doi: 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2018.02.008. [reference]. This study explore the global spatial pattern of H5N1 HPAI based on outbreak data in wild birds, genetic sequences, and risk factors, respectively. The shortest distance to wild bird migration routes, roads and railways, elevation, the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), land use and land cover (LULC) and infant mortality rates (IMR) were significantly associated with the occurrence of H5N1 HPAI. The high-risk areas were mainly located in Northern and Central Europe, the eastern Mediterranean, and East and Southeast Asia. High-risk clusters were closely related to the social, economic and ecological environment of the region.

    Recommendations for affected countries and those at risk

    Please refer to the Update published on 11 October 2017 for a list of recommendations.

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