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October 25, 2014

U of M study raises more concerns about flu at fairs

A University of Minnesota veterinarian, Dr. Jeff Bender, is releasing the results of his study and it comes with a warning for anyone planning to visit the Minnesota State Fair — which starts one week from Thursday. Scientists found 19 percent of the 57 pigs tested at the Minnesota State Fair in 2009 had the H1N1 flu virus — compared to none of the 47 samples the year before. Fair officials tell the Star Tribune they’ve stepped up precautions for both fairgoers and livestock.

More than 160 people in about a dozen states have contracted a new type of swine flu, USA Today reports.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says fair visitors should avoid taking food and drinks into barns and to wash up after they’re near animals.

Health officials tell the Star Tribune that so far, no cases of the new swine flu, known as H3N2v, have been found in Minnesota.