4. Outing Influenza

New strains of avian and human influenza are emerging each year and taking a devastating toll on populations of threatened wildlife. For instance, the recent emergence of H5N1, a highly contagious avian influenza, spread from chickens to people and nearly 200 species of wild birds and mammals. Scientists at the Institute for Conservation Research are collaborating with the State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases at the University of Hong Kong to assess susceptibility and resistance to influenza viruses in 72 wildlife species using tissue samples from our Frozen Zoo®. These findings will provide animal managers with new research tools needed to prevent the rampant spread of these viruses through already vulnerable populations.

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