An individual from Giza, Egypt is the fourth confirmed human H5N1 avian influenza case reported in 2016, according to a FAO report. This is the second case reported from Giza, while the others were reported in Sohag and Cairo.
This follows a record year in H5N1 cases in Egypt in 2015 when more than 160 cases were seen.
Since the first human cases were recorded in 2003, the World Health Organization puts the global total 846 cases and 449 deaths as of Feb. 25.
H5N1 is a type of influenza virus that causes a highly infectious, severe respiratory disease in birds called avian influenza (or “bird flu”). Human cases of H5N1 avian influenza occur occasionally, but it is difficult to transmit the infection from person to person. When people do become infected, the mortality rate is about 60%.
Almost all cases of H5N1 infection in people have been associated with close contact with infected live or dead birds, or H5N1-contaminated environments. The virus does not infect humans easily, and spread from person to person appears to be unusual.