Health scientists have warned of the danger of the “Nipah” virus, stressing that it may cause a pandemic with a lethal rate of up to 75%, which means that it can kill many more people than the Coronavirus.
In an interview with the British newspaper “Sun Online,” according to a report published on Saturday, a group of experts said that the Nipah virus, which was first detected in Malaysia in 1999 and carried by fruit bats, may lead to a new pandemic that hits the world and will be “really big.”
The World Health Organization has identified Nipah as one of 10 infectious diseases out of 16 illnesses that it said pose a threat to public health while stressing that there are still no research projects by pharmaceutical companies to treat virus infection.
Studies of this virus outbreak, which arrived from Malaysia to Singapore, Bangladesh, and India, showed that the lethality ranges from 45% to 75%.
The incubation period is usually between 4 and 14 days, but it reached 45 days in some cases.
Symptoms of HIV infection include fever, headache, muscle pain, vomiting, and sore throat, which may be followed by dizziness, drowsiness, change in consciousness, mental confusion, and neurological signs indicating acute encephalitis.
Some people may also suffer from some types of pneumonia and severe respiratory problems. In extreme cases, some may develop encephalitis. These cases may develop into a coma within 24 to 48 hours, and at the same time, the disease may proceed without any symptoms at all.
The director of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry at the University of Kentucky, and a world leader in the study of viruses, Rebecca Dach, said in an interview with “Sun Online” that although there are no known outbreaks of the virus in the world at present, they occur periodically. ” Very likely to be repeated in the future.
Dutch explained that “Nipah is one of the viruses that can certainly be the cause of a new pandemic,” indicating that there are several factors related to it that cause great concern.
She indicated that this list includes the possibility of the emergence of a new strain of the virus characterized by a high transmission rate between humans. This lethality level ranges between 45% and 75%, the long incubation period that may reach 45 days, and the possibility of its spread through food and human or animal secretions.
Melanie Saville, director of the Vaccine Research and Development Division at the Alliance for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), warned of the need for the world to prepare for a “massive” pandemic, adding: “It is essential that we not stand by and watch about the Nipah virus. We know that a new pandemic will occur in the future.” Is inevitable. ”
Jonathan Epstein, vice president of EcoHealth Alliance for science and enlightenment media, said: “We know very little about the genetic diversity of Niph-related viruses that bats carry, and what we don’t want to happen is the emergence of a more transmissible strain between humans.”
Epstein continued, “Currently, Nipah is spread when close contact with an infected person, especially if he has a respiratory disease through droplets, and we do not generally see large chains of transmission. However, if there is sufficient possibility of spread from bats to people and among people, a highly adapted strain may emerge.” The better, the greater its ability to spread among humans. ”
He added, “This is a zoonotic virus that is knocking at the door, and we have to do real work now to understand where cases appear among humans and try to reduce the possibility of its spread so that it has no chance at all. To adapt between humans.”
Source: “Sun” + agencies