H3N2v Influenza and Swine Contact. (Sep 18, 2012)


H3N2v (variant) Influenza and Swine Contact

UMASH Technical Safety Bulletin

What is H3N2v (variant) flu?

H3N2v is a type of swine influenza (flu) virus that

recently has caused illness in some people with

direct or indirect contact with pigs; as of August 17

2012, there have been 225 reported cases in people

in the United States. This virus was first detected in

people in the United States in July 2011.

What do the letters and numbers mean?

H3N2v is just one of many types of flu, and the

letters and numbers serve to distinguish different

flu viruses. A “v” or "variant" designation is

applied when a virus that normally circulates in

pigs is found in humans.

How is the H3N2v flu transmitted to people?

H3N2v appears to be mostly spread by direct contact

with pigs infected with the virus. The virus is not

readily spread person to person.

Where did this new influenza virus come from?

The specific origin of the H3N2v flu virus is

unknown at this time. The genetic code of flu viruses

do change often, which is why a new seasonal flu

vaccine is needed each year.

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