Via CBC News: H5N1 strain from Alberta nurse resembles Chinese strain. Excerpt:
Canadian scientists studying H5N1 bird flu virus samples taken from an Alberta woman who died with the infection say that so far it seems to resemble a Chinese strain.
Researchers at Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory and Alberta’s provincial laboratory isolated samples of the virus and are working on sequencing it.
They’re looking to see if the sequence is the same as previous ones in the search for clues to the Jan. 3 death.
"Based on the genome sequence data collected to date, researchers at the [National Microbiology Laboratory] have found it to be consistent with a previously circulating H5N1 strain from China," a spokesperson said in an email Wednesday.
"The first research priority for the NML is to complete the whole genome sequence of the virus, and then analyze the data to learn more about the specific traits and characteristics of the virus. The genome analysis will help inform and guide all future research priorities."
If the sample differs from previous samples, then researchers could take a closer look. Researchers at the National Microbiology Laboratory aim to analyze genome data from the H5N1 virus taken from an Alberta patient to learn more about the specific characteristics of the virus.
The sample will also be shared with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Once the genome sequencing is complete, the information will be uploaded to the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID) and be made available to researchers around the world.