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Anthrax alert hits Altai, with state of emergency in the Tselinniy district

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26 August 2012


Three more men from the same village of Druzhba - meaning Friendship, who were in contact with him, have been rushed to hospital, Interfax reports. 

Doctors are working in the village, checking its every citizen, while vets are vaccinating all domestic animals in the area. 

Stray animals are being shot, it is reported, in a bid to prevent the virulent infection spreading.

Police also blocked all routes in and out of the village, allowing only for food supplies and medics to move freely.

Every car allowed to leave is thoroughly checked to prevent milk and meat leaving the village, as they can be potential carriers of infection. 

Additional police forced were deployed to ensure order.

There is a ban on movement of cattle, and all animals have undergone vaccination. 

Villagers are holding an emergency meeting to discuss how to limit the risk of infection, ensuring the deadly disease does not spread. 

Some 16,500 people live in the district hit by the outbreak. 

The administrative capital Tselinnoye is 160km southeastof the nearest large city, Barnaul.

Anthrax is an acute disease caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis.

It affects humans and other animals but often can be treated if caught early enough. 

'When spores are inhaled, ingested, or come into contact with a skin lesion on a host, they may become reactivated and multiply rapidly,' says Wikipedia.

'Anthrax commonly infects wild and domesticated herbivorous mammals that ingest or inhale the spores while grazing. Ingestion is thought to be the most common route by which herbivores contract anthrax.

'Carnivores living in the same environment may become infected by consuming infected animals. Diseased animals can spread anthrax to humans, either by direct contact (e.g., inoculation of infected blood to broken skin) or by consumption of a diseased animal's flesh.'

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