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Test results confirm Denmark's 1st H5N1 bird flu case
29/3/2006 10:41

Tests on a buzzard found dead in Denmark on March 14 have confirmed that it was infected with H5N1 bird flu, the EU reference laboratory authorities said yesterday.

The buzzard, the first known case of the disease in the country, was found dead near the town of Naestved, about 70 km south of Copenhagen, capital of Denmark, in a wetland area populated by migratory birds.

According to reports from Copenhagen, the Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research later sent the samples to the European Union reference laboratory in Britain for final verification.

Denmark has found 11 cases of the virus after the deadly strain was first detected in the country. The Danish authorities have setup quarantine and surveillance zones around where the infected bird was found.

The H5N1 strain of bird flu, in its most aggressive form, has killed at least 100 people worldwide since 2003, according to the World Health Organization.

Experts fear it may mutate into a form passed easily between people, sparking a pandemic. But to date there have been no confirmed cases of the virus transmitting from person to person.

Xinhua News