Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

First Ebola-like virus native to Europe discovered

Date:
October 22, 2011
Source:
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a new Ebola-like virus -- Lloviu virus -- in bats from northern Spain. Lloviu virus is the first known filovirus native to Europe. Filoviruses, which include well-known viruses like Ebola and Marburg, are among the deadliest pathogens in humans and non-human primates, and are generally found in East Africa and the Philippines. The findings thus expand the natural geographical distribution of filoviruses.

A team of international researchers has discovered a new Ebola-like virus -- Lloviu virus -- in bats from northern Spain. Lloviu virus is the first known filovirus native to Europe, they report in a study published in the journal PLOS Pathogens.

Related Articles


The study was a collaboration among scientists at the Center for Infection and Immunity (CII) at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, the Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII) in Spain, Roche Life Sciences, Centro de Investigación Príncipe Felipe, Grupo Asturiano para el Estudio y Conservación de los Murciélagos, Consejo Suerior de Investigaciones Científicas and the Complutense University in Spain.

Filoviruses, which include well-known viruses like Ebola and Marburg, are among the deadliest pathogens in humans and non-human primates, and are generally found in East Africa and the Philippines. The findings thus expand the natural geographical distribution of filoviruses.

"The study is an opportunity to advance the knowledge of filoviruses' natural cycle," said Ana Negredo, one of the first authors of the study.

Scientists at ISCIII analyzed lung, liver, spleen, throat, brain and rectal samples from 34 bats found in caves in Asturias and Cantabria, Spain, following bat die-offs in France, Spain and Portugal in 2002 affecting mainly one bat species.

They screened these samples for a wide range of viruses using the polymerase chain reaction, a molecular technique that allows scientists to amplify genetic material, and. detected a filovirus. Filoviruses include ebolaviruses and marburgviruses, two viruses associated with severe disease in humans and other primates..

CII scientists used high-throughput sequencing to characterize the virus' genome. When they compared it to other well-known filovirus genomes, they found that Lloviu virus represents a class of viruses distantly related to all ebolaviruses and that it may have diverged from ebolaviruses about 68,000 years ago.

"The detection of this novel filovirus in Spain is intriguing because it is completely outside of its previously described range. We need to ascertain whether other filoviruses native to Europe exist, and more importantly, if and how it causes disease," said Gustavo Palacios, the other first author of the study.

Filoviruses typically do not make bats sick, but because the team of researchers only detected Lloviu virus in bats that had died and whose tissues showed signs of an immune response, they think Lloviu may be a cause for concern. They also did not detect Lloviu virus in samples of almost 1,300 healthy bats.

Bats have important roles in plant pollination, spreading plant seeds and controlling insect populations, and pathogens that attack bat populations could have dramatic ecological and health-related consequences.

"The Lloviu virus discovery highlights how much we still need to learn about the world of emerging infectious diseases and the importance of global collaboration and the One Health initiative in addressing the challenge," said CII Director Dr. Ian Lipkin.

This research was funded by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, USAID PREDICT, the RICET Network on Tropical Diseases and the Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia in Spain.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ana Negredo, Gustavo Palacios, Sonia Vázquez-Morón, Félix González, Hernán Dopazo, Francisca Molero, Javier Juste, Juan Quetglas, Nazir Savji, Maria de la Cruz Martínez, Jesus Enrique Herrera, Manuel Pizarro, Stephen K. Hutchison, Juan E. Echevarría, W. Ian Lipkin, Antonio Tenorio. Discovery of an Ebolavirus-Like Filovirus in Europe. PLoS Pathogens, 2011; 7 (10): e1002304 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1002304

Cite This Page:

Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "First Ebola-like virus native to Europe discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 October 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111020191850.htm>.
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. (2011, October 22). First Ebola-like virus native to Europe discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111020191850.htm
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "First Ebola-like virus native to Europe discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111020191850.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 24, 2014) — Miniature deep sea animals discovered off the Australian coast almost three decades ago are puzzling scientists, who say the organisms have proved impossible to categorise. Academics at the Natural History of Denmark have appealed to the world scientific community for help, saying that further information on Dendrogramma enigmatica and Dendrogramma discoides could answer key evolutionary questions. Jim Drury has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 23, 2014) — Price check on honey? Bear cub startles Oregon drugstore shoppers. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

AFP (Oct. 23, 2014) — One man is on a mission to boost the population of wolves in China's violence-wracked far west. The animal - symbol of the Uighur minority there - is under threat with a massive human resettlement program in the region. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) — Conflicting studies published in the same week re-ignited the debate over whether we should be eating breakfast. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

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