New H1N1 Flu Strain discovered in Canada

A new strain of H1N1 flu sickened two workers at a pig farm in Saskatchewan, Canadian health officials said on Tuesday. Tests found the strain is different from the pandemic swine flu circulating the globe.

The two people recovered from mild illness, and a third case is under investigation, according to a government statement. Pigs from the farm tested positive for a common version of swine flu and didn’t carry the new human version found in the workers.

The new Canada strain is made up of genes from human seasonal flu and genes from swine flu viruses, according to the statement from the Public Health Agency of Canada, Bloomberg reports.

"Preliminary results indicate the risk to public health is low and that Canadians who have been vaccinated against the regular, seasonal flu should have some immunity to this new flu strain," Canada's health minister, Leona Aglukkaq, said in a statement.

The virus is not connected to the new swine flu H1N1 strain that has killed 429 people worldwide, Reuters reports.

In the meantime new cases of A/novel H1N1 continue to show up in the United States and worldwide. It means that influenza activity at clinical laboratories is higher than normal for this time of year. These continuing influenza cases affirm why public health officials expect a busy flu season this fall and winter, reports.

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