Towards a potential spread of a hemorrhagic fever virus to humans: experts on alert

SHFV virus, simian hemorrhagic fever virus is highly virulent to certain species of monkey and it has all the capabilities to be transmitted to humans according to a scientific study.

Researchers have highlighted possibility of a virus being found in monkeys may or may not in the near future infect humans.

At least there is functionsalthough no transmission to humans has currently been observed.

It’s about the virus SHFV, simian hemorrhagic fever virus which is similar in level of symptoms to Ebola in particular and who has genetic similarities to HIV responsible for AIDS, as reported by Science and Life.

So this virus presents itself all ingredients to worry in case of spread.

A virulent virus

This virus mainly infects monkeys. Scientists have discovered antibodies in a species of monkey, Patas, nicknamed the weeping monkeys, which lives in Africa.

But what worries the researchers is that this virus is very virulent in another species of monkey, macaques.

Because when a macaque is infected with the virus, it shows very serious symptoms, very quickly: feverswollen and bluish skin, black blood in the feces, that is more bleeding… up to death10 to 15 days after the onset of symptoms.

Ability to infect human blood cells

Researchers from the University of Colorado have studied this virus more closely. And by manipulating it in the lab, they demonstrated that it had ability to infect human blood cells.

It also shares many characteristics with simian immunodeficiency virus, which caused HIV, AIDS virus and especially infection immune cells once in the human body, develop rapidly and thus prevent any defense of the organism and therefore destroy it against other pathogenic substances in addition to its own.

The researchers published their work and results in the scientific journal Cell on 30 September.

Although American scientists remain calm at the moment, this virus can therefore be transmitted to humans and spread. Humans can become infected by contact directly with a macaque or by indirect contact.

They nevertheless finish their work with must monitor this virus very closely and to develop tests in a preventive way.

“Given that at least three different simian artery viruses have caused fatal infections in captive macaques after host switching and that humans are immunologically na├»ve to this family of viruses, development of serological tests for human surveillance should be a priority.”

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