H7N9 influenza observed for the first time in humans
Three people in China have contracted a form of bird flu not seen before in humans, the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports. The agency confirmed March 29 that two men in Shanghai have died of infection with H7N9 avian influenza, and a woman in Anhui province is critically ill with the virus.
Symptoms in all three patients included cough and fever and then progressed to severe pneumonia and difficulty breathing.
There are no known connections linking the people, and the virus has never been shown to transmit from person to person, a representative from the World Health Organization said. Chinese authorities and the WHO are investigating where the three people picked up the virus and trying to determine how it is transmitted.