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Press Release

U.S. and Vietnam Conduct Research to Reduce Influenza Virus Transmission between Animals and Humans

HANOI, October 28, 2013 – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (U.S. CDC) partnered with the Vietnam Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) and the Vietnam Ministry of Health (MOH) to conduct new research on influenza viruses in pigs and humans.  The ability of the influenza virus to evolve and to transmit across species remains a major public health concern and this new research study will enhance Vietnam’s abilities to address these concerns through a One Health approach, which includes animal health as an important aspect of public health.  

“Much is known about influenza viruses in poultry, but less is known about the viruses in pigs and in the people exposed to pigs during daily activities,” U.S. CDC Chief of the Animal-Human Interface program in Vietnam, Dr. James Kile, said of the new research project.  “Over the next year, nasal swab and blood samples will be collected from pigs and humans in nine provinces in the northern, central, and southern regions of Vietnam.  This One Health research will help us better understand the influenza viruses that pigs and humans share and the potential risks of virus transmission.”

“We are pleased to partner with U.S. CDC and the MOH National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology on this joint research study.  It will help us identify more effective policies to better control and prevent diseases from spreading between humans and animals in Vietnam,” said Dr. Pham Van Dong, Director General of the MARD Department of Animal Health.

This One Health field research study builds upon almost a decade of collaboration between U.S. CDC and the Vietnam MOH and MARD to enhance and sustain national capacity for influenza virus surveillance and research.