China plans to share bird flu samples
China is putting procedures in place to provide
samples of bird flu viruses to international health authorities - a step
that is in line with international trends towards sharing all available
information on the virus.
China has not provided international health agencies with samples of bird
flu viruses found in the country since 2004.
Scientific analyses of bird flu samples are important because they help
experts trace the evolution of viruses and the geographical spread of any
"When viral strains cross international borders, special protocols are needed
and we are working to complete those," said vice director of the Ministry of
Agriculture's veterinary department, Li Jinxiang.
Li said Beijing wanted "to conform to WHO (World Health Organisation) standards for international
Though China has not submitted bird flu samples since late 2004, it has
regularly reported results of its laboratory tests, including genetic
information, to international bodies, Li added.
In related news, many top
scientists have called for the establishment of a consortium to share AI virus
sequence information, in the hope that this will lead to better treatments
for the disease.
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