A team of 10 doctors has culled more than 1,000 pigs through electricity shocks due to the outbreak of African swine fever infection in the Lakhimpur district.
Earlier this year, the Assam government imposed a ban on the entry of poultry and pigs in the state from other states following the outbreak of Avian Influenza and African Swine Fever in some states of the country.
What is African Swine Fever?
The African swine fever (ASF) virus is the sole member of the Asfarviridae family. The disease was first described in 1921, in Africa. It is the only DNA virus known that is able to infect arthropods (certain soft-bodied ticks of the genus Ornithodoros), as well as mammals.
The virus is able to survive for several days in the environment. However, this may be extended in the presence of protein (blood, meat) to weeks or months, and even a year.
H1N1 is commonly the cause of swine flu in humans
- The influenza A variant subtype H1N1 is commonly the cause of swine flu in humans. It has similar genetic features to the H1N1 subtype of influenza virus that causes influenza in pigs.
- Other main subtypes known to occur and cause influenza in pigs include H1N2 and H3N2. There have been infections in humans with these two variant subtypes as well.
- In 2009, the H1N1 variant became widespread in humans for the first time.
- Since 2009, the H1N1 virus has become one of the common viruses that circulate each flu season. Many people now have some immunity to the virus. As a result, experts are now less concerned about this type of swine flu than they were in 2009.
- Seasonal influenza is an acute respiratory infection caused by influenza viruses which circulate in all parts of the world.
- There are 4 types of influenza viruses, types A, B, C and D. Influenza A and B viruses circulate and cause seasonal epidemics of disease.
- Influenza A viruses are further classified into subtypes according to the combinations of the hemagglutinin (HA) and the neuraminidase (NA), the proteins on the surface of the virus. Currently circulating in humans are subtype A(H1N1) and A(H3N2) influenza viruses. The A(H1N1) caused the pandemic in 2009 and subsequently replaced the seasonal influenza A(H1N1) virus which had circulated prior to 2009. Only influenza type A viruses are known to have caused pandemics.
- Influenza B viruses are not classified into subtypes, but can be broken down into lineages. Currently circulating influenza type B viruses belong to either B/Yamagata or B/Victoria lineage.
- Influenza C virus is detected less frequently and usually causes mild infections, thus does not present public health importance.
- Influenza D viruses primarily affect cattle and are not known to infect or cause illness in people .