H3N2 strains of influenza A isolated from swine in Hong Kong were compared with human strains of H3N2 influenza A variants in reciprocal HI tests using ferret sera. One isolate from swine was indistinguishable from A/Hong Kong/68, one set of viruses isolated in 1976 and 1977 was most related to A/Hong Kong/68 but was not identical to it, two isolates from 1976 were ‘bridging strains’ that cross-reacted equally with the contemporary variants A/Victoria/3/75 and A/Texas/1/77, similarly to a small number of recent human isolates, and two isolates from 1977 were similar to A/Victoria/3/75. These general relationships were supported by neuraminidase inhibition tests. The findings confirm and extend previous results indicating that swine may be a reservoir of old and novel variants of influenza A H3N2 strains related to those that infect man.


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