Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New And Deadly Viruses Passed Through Sweet Food And Domestic Animals

Date:
April 6, 2008
Source:
Society for General Microbiology
Summary:
Nipah virus is a new and deadly brain and lung disease that emerged from Singapore and Malaysia ten years ago. It is now spreading into rural India and Bangladesh killing up to three-quarters of the people who become infected in some outbreaks.

Nipah virus is a new and deadly brain and lung disease that emerged from Singapore and Malaysia ten years ago. It is now spreading into rural India and Bangladesh killing up to three-quarters of the people who become infected in some outbreaks, scientists heard April 3, 2008 at the Society for General Microbiology's 162nd meeting.

"People are catching this disease by drinking date palm juice or probably by eating fruit contaminated by the virus, or through contact with infected animals. We have seen nine outbreaks in Bangladesh since 2001, which killed 40-100% of the people who were infected", says Dr Jahangir Hossain, a scientist working in the Dhaka Hospital at the International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research in Bangladesh (ICDDR,B).

Fruit bats are a natural reservoir of Nipah virus, and the first outbreaks in Singapore and Malaysia started when pigs on farms ate fruit which had been bitten by infected bats and dropped near their pens. The pigs developed coughs and breathing difficulties, and an epidemic spread across the Asian peninsula due to the pig trade. Pig farmers and abattoir workers became infected from sick pigs.

"Three outbreaks in Bangladesh were caused when people ate fresh date palm sap, a local sweet delicacy, which had been contaminated by bats." says Dr Jahangir Hossain. "Because both people and animals in Bangladesh often eat fresh date palm sap and fruits which have been bitten by bats, contaminated food and domestic animals form an important transmission pathway for Nipah virus to infect people."

The researchers have been trying to discover the way Nipah virus outbreaks start and to identify the factors which could help prevent virus transmission in the future. The large outbreak in pigs in Malaysia and Singapore caused the biggest outbreak in humans so far. In one outbreak in Bangladesh, people became infected after contact with sick cows, and close contact with pig herds was associated with virus transmission in another outbreak.

"We are working with local date palm sap collectors to learn about traditional practices that prevent bats from getting at and contaminating the sap", says Dr Jahangir Hossain. "If we can identify the factors that allow the virus to be passed from bats to humans so frequently, we might be able to help intervene and interfere with the transmission pathways. Current efforts should focus on restricting the consumption of fruit bitten by bats, restricting human contact with sick animals, and protecting date palm sap from contamination by bat secretions."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for General Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for General Microbiology. "New And Deadly Viruses Passed Through Sweet Food And Domestic Animals." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402194413.htm>.
Society for General Microbiology. (2008, April 6). New And Deadly Viruses Passed Through Sweet Food And Domestic Animals. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402194413.htm
Society for General Microbiology. "New And Deadly Viruses Passed Through Sweet Food And Domestic Animals." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402194413.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

AP (July 29, 2014) Food scraps and other items left on the grounds by picnickers brings unwelcome visitors to the grounds of the world famous and popular Louvre Museum in Paris. (July 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Newsy (July 28, 2014) The asteroid that killed the dinosaurs struck at the worst time for them. A new study says that if it hit earlier or later, they might've survived. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins