Foot and mouth source still mysterious

The UK government has issued some preliminary findings into an investigation of the source of linkurl:foot and mouth disease;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/19591/ (FMD) virus that started an outbreak in cattle near two research labs in Surrey last week.

By | August 8, 2007

The UK government has issued some preliminary findings into an investigation of the source of linkurl:foot and mouth disease;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/19591/ (FMD) virus that started an outbreak in cattle near two research labs in Surrey last week. After an onsite investigation and personnel interviews, the government-led team has found that the virus strain was being worked on in two facilities near the outbreak, the Institute of Animal Health (which researches FMD) and Merial Animal Health Ltd (which produces linkurl:vaccines;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/19550/ .) The report says that the combined chance of the virus escaping via airborne release is negligible, but the chances of it escaping through waterborne release or through humans both remain possible. The team is looking at the two latter issues further, and also expect some more detailed molecular information on the virus within a week. The outbreak was confirmed in cattle on a Surrey farm on Friday, and since then, researchers have confirmed an additional outbreak. They determined that the strain affecting cattle is close to a strain that was last circulating in 1967. Stay tuned for more details in today's news.

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