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New swine flu with 'pandemic potential' discovered in China

June 30, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Chinese researchers have discovered a new type of virus in pigs that can infect humans and is capable of causing a pandemic, according to a new study on Monday.

The disease, which researchers called the G4 virus, is genetically descended from the H1N1 swine flu that caused a global pandemic in 2009.

There is no evidence yet that G4 could spread from person to person, but researchers warned that the virus was on the rise among pig populations, and could "pose a serious threat to human health. " Transmission of the virus from pig to human could "lead to severe infection and even death," said the study, which called for stronger surveillance and control of the virus' spread.

"It is of concern that human infection of G4 virus will further human adaptation and increase the risk of a human pandemic," said the authors of the study, based at several Chinese institutions including Shandong Agricultural University and the Chinese National Influenza Center.

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