Since the new H7N9 bird flu first broke out in China in late March, the strain has sickened more than 130 people and killed 37. The World Health Organization has previously described H7N9 as “one of the most lethal influenza viruses” it has ever seen and said it appeared to spread faster than the last bird flu strain, H5N1, that threatened to unleash a pandemic.
After making some adjustments for missing data, the Chinese scientists estimated the overall death rate to be 36 percent. The outbreak was stopped after China closed many of its live animal markets — scientists had assumed the virus was infecting people through exposure to live birds.
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