BEIJING- Chinese researchers have isolated an African swine fever virus, according to China Daily on Tuesday.

The research progress could contribute to more knowledge of the organism, and may also lead to new methods for prevention and control, the paper said.

The virus, called Pig/HLJ/18, was isolated from a sample taken from an animal at a farm hit by an African swine fever outbreak last year in Jiamusi, northeast China’s Heilongjiang Province.

Studies showed that the virus is virulent and transmissible among domestic pigs, the Harbin

Veterinary Research Institute said in a statement. During tests, pigs injected with the virus displayed symptoms such as fever within three or four days, and all died within six to 10 days. Pigs that were not directly injected but lived with the other pigs also got the disease and died, a leading author of the research Zhao Dongming told the newspaper.The virus does not affect humans, said the newspaper.  The findings highlighted the necessity in the control and prevention of African swine fever in  China, which has more than half the world’s pig population, Zhao said.




Stolen Picasso painting found after 20 yrs

THE HAGUE- ‘Buste de Femme’, a painting by Pablo Picasso that was stolen in 1999, has been found, Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant revealed on Tuesday. Dutch art detective Arthur Brand found the painting, after it had been circulated in the Dutch underworld for years. In 1999 the painting was stolen from the yacht of Saudi businessman Abdul Mohsen Abdulmalik al-Sheikh in Antibes, France. The businessman bought it in the 1980s from the Pace Gallery in New York. The painting, worth four million euros (4.5 million U.S. dollars) at that time, was never seen again.  In 2015 Brand heard of a lost Picasso, at first not knowing what painting to look for, and after years of detective work he came to know that this particular work, the ‘Buste de Femme’, had regularly appeared in the Dutch criminal circuit over the past 20 years and that it was now in the possession of a businessman, who thought to have bought it in a legitimate deal, but now did not dare go to the police with it. “They are afraid they may be accused of theft. However, after consultation with the Dutch police and contacting the police in France, the theft turned out to be time-barred. Returning the painting voluntarily would only be a civil matter,” Brand told the newspaper.