(Reuters) - The new bird flu strain that has killed 36 people in China has proved resistant to Tamiflu for the first time, a development scientists said was "concerning".The H7N9 virus was found to be resistant to Roche's widely used flu drug in three out of 14 patients who were studied in detail by doctors from Shanghai and Hong Kong.
Tamiflu, which is given as a pill, belongs to a group of medicines known as neuraminidase inhibitors that currently offer the only known treatment option for bird flu. GlaxoSmithKline's inhaled medicine Relenza has the same mode of action.
The H7N9 virus is known to have infected 131 people in China since February, but no new cases have been detected since early May, according to the World Health Organization.
Experts from the United Nations agency said last week the bird flu outbreak in China had caused some $6.5 billion in losses to the economy.
Jesus foretold the last days would be marked by pestilences.