Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Report: China's bird flu death toll rises to 5

By CNN Staff
updated 8:48 PM EDT, Thu April 4, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: CDC official says agency working with Chinese to find source
  • Two people died of H7N9 virus on Wednesday in Shanghai, state-run news agency reports
  • All of the country's 14 cases were reported in eastern China
  • H7N9 is a strain of avian flu not previously detected in humans

(CNN) -- Two more people in China have died from the H7N9 bird flu virus, raising the country's death toll to five, state-run news agency Xinhua reported Thursday, citing Shanghai health officials.

H7N9 is a strain of avian flu not detected in humans before China's recent cases, which the country began reporting on Sunday.

Fourteen human cases of H7N9 -- all in eastern China -- have now been reported, according to Xinhua.

"We don't know yet where the humans got their virus from," said Dr. Joseph Bresee, who heads the epidemiology and prevention branch in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's influenza division.

New deadly strain of bird flu in China

The virus has not been shown to spread easily between humans, he added.

The two most recent deaths happened Wednesday in Shanghai hospitals. All but one of the five deaths have occurred in that city.

One of Wednesday's deaths was that of a 48-year-old poultry transporter who, although he died in Shanghai, lived in nearby Jiangsu province, Xinhua reported.

The three previously reported deaths were: two men -- ages 27 and 87 -- who lived in Shanghai, and a 38-year-old man who lived in Zhejiang province but worked in Jiangsu province, according to state-run news agency Xinhua.

The CDC is working closely with Chinese authorities trying to find the source of the human infections, Bresee said.

"There are lots of things happening at CDC to prepare for this virus," Bresee said. "State health departments are readying themselves just in case," and researchers are working on developing a vaccine for this strain, he said.

Read: Bird flu research resumes -- but not in the U.S.

CNN's Miriam Falco contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:04 PM EDT, Sun September 21, 2014
He's one of the fieriest political activists in Hong Kong — he's been called an "extremist" by China's state-run media — and he's not old enough to drive.
updated 5:29 AM EDT, Tue September 16, 2014
Christians in eastern China keep watch in Wenzhou, where authorities have demolished churches and removed crosses.
updated 1:38 AM EDT, Wed September 10, 2014
Home-grown hip-hop appeals to a younger generation but its popularity has not translated into record deals and profits for budding rap artists.
updated 1:45 AM EDT, Tue September 9, 2014
Reforms to the grueling gaokao - the competitive college entrance examination - don't make the grade, says educator Jiang Xueqin.
updated 8:18 AM EDT, Fri September 5, 2014
Beijing grapples with reports from Iraq that a Chinese national fighting for ISIS has been captured.
updated 10:00 PM EDT, Sun August 31, 2014
CNN's David McKenzie has tasted everything from worms to grasshoppers while on the road; China's cockroaches are his latest culinary adventure.
updated 8:57 PM EDT, Thu September 4, 2014
Beijing rules only candidates approved by a nominating committee can run for Hong Kong's chief executive.
updated 3:14 PM EDT, Fri August 29, 2014
China warns the United States to end its military surveillance flights near Chinese territory.
updated 11:12 PM EDT, Thu August 28, 2014
China has produced elite national athletes but some argue the emphasis on winning discourages children. CNN's Kristie Lu Stout reports
updated 1:13 AM EDT, Tue August 19, 2014
Chinese are turning to overseas personal shoppers to get their hands on luxury goods at lower prices.
updated 5:08 AM EDT, Fri August 15, 2014
Experts say rapidly rising numbers of Christians are making it harder for authorities to control the religion's spread.
updated 12:52 AM EDT, Mon August 11, 2014
"I'm proud of their moral standing," says Harvey Humphrey. His parents are accused of corporate crimes in China.
updated 3:42 PM EDT, Wed August 6, 2014
A TV confession detailing a life of illegal gambling and paid-for sex has capped the dramatic fall of one of China's most high-profile social media celebrities.
updated 12:10 AM EDT, Thu July 31, 2014
President Xi Jinping's campaign to punish corrupt Chinese officials has snared its biggest target -- where can the campaign go from here?
updated 3:12 AM EDT, Wed July 30, 2014
All you need to know about the tainted meat produce that affects fast food restaurants across China, Hong Kong, and Japan.
updated 10:30 PM EDT, Thu July 17, 2014
Some savvy individuals in China are claiming naming rights to valuable foreign brands. Here's how companies can combat them.
updated 5:11 AM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Is the Chinese president a true reformist or merely a "dictator" in disguise? CNN's Beijing bureau chief Jaime FlorCruz dissects the leader's policies
updated 11:44 PM EDT, Mon July 7, 2014
With a population of 1.3 billion, you'd think that there would be 11 people in China who are good enough to put up a fight on the football pitch.
ADVERTISEMENT