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We performed an experimental infection of 21- and 70-day-old meat turkeys with an early human isolate of the 2009 pandemic H1N1 influenza virus exhibiting an α-2,3 receptor binding profile. Virus was not recovered by molecular or conventional methods from blood, tracheal and cloacal swabs, lungs, intestine or muscle tissue. Seroconversion was detected in a limited number of birds with the homologous antigen only. Our findings suggest that in its present form, the pandemic H1N1 influenza virus is not likely to be transmitted to meat turkeys and does therefore not represent an animal health or food safety issue for this species.


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