A new strain of avian influenza has been documented in China. It has already resulted in one death (an elderly woman this past december) and another confirmed infection
was observed in January. If we see an outbreak of this new strain, it will we be interesting to see if there is an y economic impact. Perhaps tourists will tire of hearing about deadly viruses in China and will wish to avoid any potential contact with the avian flu, choose ing safer destinations instead of China. Furthermore, if this trend continues, perhaps foreign companies will choose to take their offices/factories/etc. elsewhere, rather than risk possible exposure to a potentially deadly strain of avian influenza. Also, if China develops a reputation for fostering deadly viruses, it’s economy stands to take a hit. If such a reputation is enough of a deterrent, China’s economy could experience both of the aforementioned deleterious outcomes. [Verbose!!]
This strain is no joke, either.
As Shu Yeolong, a researcher from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Beijing and an author of the recent report, recently stated, “A genetic analysis of the H10N8 virus shows a virus that is distinct from previously reported H10N8 viruses, having evolved some genetic characteristics that may allow it to replicate efficiently in humans.” Also, in a Lancet article published on The Lancet, a leading online general medical journal, article reported, “The pandemic potential of this novel virus should not be underestimated.” Well, let’s hope it doesn’t make it to the pandemic level, for both China’s sake and ours.