Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Bird Flu Virus Can Pass Through Placenta To Fetus And Infect Organs Other Than Lungs In Adults

The H5N1 strain of the bird flu virus can pass through the placenta of pregnant women to the unborn fetus, and can infect organs other than the lungs in adults. These are the conclusions of authors of an Article in this week’s edition of The Lancet.

Professor Jiang Gu, Peking University, Beijing, China and colleagues studied post-mortem tissues of two adults – one man and one pregnant woman, and also tested the dead fetus of the dead woman. They investigated how H5N1 – an emerging infectious disease which causes respiratory symptoms and a high fatality rate – affects different organs in the body.

The authors say: “A pandemic outbreak of human infection with avian H5N1 currently poses a potentially serious health threat worldwide…little is known about the specific effects in organs and cells targeted by the virus.”

The researchers detected viral genetic material and antigens in the lungs, certain cells in the trachea, the T cells of the lymph node, neurons in the brain, and in cells of the placenta. Viral genetic material was also detected in the intestinal mucosa, but no H5N1 viral antigens were found there. In the fetus, both viral genetic material and antigens were found in the lungs, circulating cells of the immune system and in cells of the liver.

They conclude: “This study has shown the capacity for human vertical transmission of the H5N1 virus…[this] warrants careful investigation, since maternal infections with common human influenza virus are generally thought not to infect the fetus.”

They add: “We have shown that H5N1 virus spreads beyond the lungs…these newly obtained data are important in the clinical, pathological and epidemiological investigation of human H5N1 infection, and have implications for public-health and health care providers.”

In an accompanying Comment, Dr Wai Fu Ng, Department of Pathology, Yan Chai Hospital, Hong Kong, China and Dr Ka Fai To, Ki ka Shing Institute of Health Science, Hong Kong, China say: “Speculation about the fate of the fetus if the mother survived is interesting. With the development of antibodies in the mother and their transplacental crossing into the fetus, pathological lesions in the fetus may result.”

They conclude by analysing the techniques used by Gu and colleagues, saying: “Correlation with viral culture to confirm productive viral replication is needed and is absent from Gu’s report. Reproduction of these studies, including experimental models, is awaited.”

Tony Kirby | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg

nachricht New potential cancer treatment using microwaves to target deep tumors
12.10.2016 | University of Texas at Arlington

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>