Author Topic: West Africa faces Highest Risk of Bat-to-Human Virus Spread  (Read 140 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline yungcrux

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 933
    • View Profile
West Africa faces Highest Risk of Bat-to-Human Virus Spread
« on: January 08, 2016, 10:06:46 AM »
Loading...

Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia are most at risk from bat viruses jumping to humans and causing new diseases that could lead to deadly outbreaks, scientists warned Tuesday.

Approximately 60 to 75 percent of emerging infectious diseases are so-called "zoonotic events" ? where animal diseases jump into people ? and bats in particular are known to carry many zoonotic viruses.

The tiny animals are the suspected origin of rabies, Ebola, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and possibly MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), and could cause other as-yet-unknown epidemics in the future.

Scientists at University College London, the Zoological Society of London and Edinburgh University looked to map out the highest-risk areas by using a variety of factors including large numbers of bat viruses found locally, increasing population pressure, and hunting bats for bushmeat.

West Africa leads

Kate Jones, UCL's chair of ecology and biodiversity, said her team first created risk maps for each variable and found, for example, that in mapping for potential human-bat contact, sub-Saharan Africa was a hotspot, while for diversity of bat viruses, South America was at most risk.

"By combining the separate maps, we've created the first global picture of the overall risks of bat viruses infecting humans in different regions," she said.

The work was published in journal The American Naturalist.

The research, using data published between 1900 and 2013, found that West Africa ? the epicentre of the recent Ebola outbreak ? is at highest risk for zoonotic bat viruses.

The wider sub-Saharan Africa region, as well as South East Asia, were also found to be hotspots.

Liam Brierley, a PhD student at Edinburgh University who worked with Jones, said the risk of bat-to-human virus transmission is being driven higher by large and increasing populations of people and livestock expanding into wild areas such as forests.

"People in these areas may also hunt bats for bushmeat, unaware of the risks of transmissible diseases which can occur through touching body fluids and raw meat of bats," he said.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2016, 10:19:26 AM by yungcrux »



 

Malaria cases dropped Worldwide but progress in Africa is slower - Says UN

Started by yungcrux

Replies: 0
Views: 279
Last post December 17, 2015, 12:52:54 PM
by yungcrux
15 Million to receive Vaccination to Contain Yellow Fever in Central Africa

Started by newspostng

Replies: 0
Views: 175
Last post July 11, 2016, 01:06:08 AM
by newspostng
Innovators from across Africa Aim to Improve Health Care for Mothers and Newborn

Started by legendguru

Replies: 0
Views: 237
Last post August 03, 2016, 06:14:43 AM
by legendguru
Action Needed as Avian Flu case Rise in Southern Africa

Started by mastercode

Replies: 0
Views: 223
Last post August 02, 2017, 12:32:55 AM
by mastercode
Mosquito Carrying Zika, Dengue More Likely to Thrive Again In Africa - REPORT

Started by lindaikeji

Replies: 0
Views: 445
Last post September 25, 2017, 12:55:20 AM
by lindaikeji
NICD denies South Africa Ebola case

Started by mastercode

Replies: 0
Views: 254
Last post October 30, 2014, 11:59:55 AM
by mastercode
HIV Vaccine Clinical Trial to Begin in South Africa

Started by legendguru

Replies: 0
Views: 283
Last post November 28, 2016, 05:48:50 AM
by legendguru
Cancer Named Africa's new health burden

Started by newspostng

Replies: 0
Views: 261
Last post February 04, 2017, 02:41:50 PM
by newspostng
Ebola virus - UN employee dies of Ebola in Germany

Started by mastercode

Replies: 0
Views: 414
Last post October 14, 2014, 08:25:31 PM
by mastercode
Samples of Zika Virus Found in Saliva, Urine Samples

Started by newspostng

Replies: 0
Views: 197
Last post February 06, 2016, 12:40:47 PM
by newspostng