Sunday, 28 October 2012

Why You Shouldn't Kiss Pigs at the County Fair

LiveScience Staff

Some prize pigs at Ohio's county fairs may have a dark secret.

Two months ago, a 61-year-old Ohio woman died after catching a new strain of swine flu. Her death was the first fatality linked to a variant of influenza A virus H3N2 (H3N2v), which first appeared in humans in 2011 and has infected more than 300 people this year.

Like many individuals who caught H3N2v this summer, the woman who died had contact with pigs at a county fair, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The flu-risk at livestock exhibitions might be especially high because the majority of flu-positive pigs at county fairs don't show any outward signs of illness, a new study suggests.

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