Influenza A(H7N9) virus emerged in eastern China in February 2013 and continues to circulate in this region, but its ecology is poorly understood. In April 2013, the Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) implemented environmental and human syndromic surveillance for the virus. Environmental samples from poultry markets in 21 city CDCs (n = 8,942) and respiratory samples from persons with influenza-like illness or pneumonia (n = 32,342) were tested; viruses isolated from 6 environmental samples and 16 patients were sequenced. Sequence analysis showed co-circulation of 4 influenza A(H7N9) virus strains that evolved by reassortment with avian influenza A(H9N2) viruses circulating in this region. In addition, an increase in human cases starting in late 2013 coincided with an increase in influenza A H7 virus isolates detected by environmental surveillance. Co-circulation of multiple avian influenza viruses that can infect humans highlights the need for increased surveillance of poultry and potential environmental sources.

dx.doi.org/10.3201/eid2012.140765, hdl.handle.net/1765/87404
Emerging Infectious Diseases - (Open Access)
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Ke, C, Lu, J, Wu, J, Guan, D, Zou, L, Song, T, … Zhang, Y. (2014). Circulation of reassortant influenza A(H7N9) viruses in poultry and humans, Guangdong Province, China, 2013. Emerging Infectious Diseases - (Open Access), 20(12), 2034–2040. doi:10.3201/eid2012.140765