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Chinese Scientists Call for More Attention on Animal-born Diseases

Chinese scientists called on to set up a monitoring system on the animal-born diseases in China and strengthen the cooperation between the medical research of animal and human being.


At a recent scientific forum held in east China's Shanghai, Wen Yumei, a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, said China lacks the basic research on animal-born diseases for a long time.


Among the 1,145 known infectious diseases of human being, 62 percent come from animals, scientists say.


Researches on some animal diseases have been conducted. But the diseases are new problems for human disease researchers when they are spread to human being, because the separate research of the two fields, said Wen.


Rabies has emerged on the top of public health agenda in China, with 2,254 rabies cases recorded in the first nine months of this year, an increase of 29.69 percent over the same period last year.


But researchers have no clear idea about the epidemic situation among wild dogs.


China suffered a lot from animal diseases in recent years. In 2003, the deadly outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) was believed to be linked to civet cats.


China has reported 21 human infections of bird flu since 2003, including 14 deaths.


The Ministry of Agriculture on Tuesday warned of a new outbreak of bird flu as winter is coming


In China's plan of scientific and technological development (2006-2020), the surveillance, quarantine, testing and diagnosis of animal-born diseases were listed as crucial tasks.


(Xinhua News Agency October 26, 2006)

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