Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New! An Unknown Poxvirus discovered in Monkeys

Just as I thought the list of poxviruses that exist is long enough, I find that scientists are still discovering more of them. An article from April 2008 describes a new poxvirus that has a little bit of everything(other poxviruses) but does not exactly resemble anyone of them.
When screened for antibodies against orthopoxviruses such as cowpox, vaccinia, and monkeypox the blood test of these monkeys, called red colobus monkeys, came out positive.
By the way, these monkeys were found in a park in Uganda.
This raises questions such as, just how many other undiscovered orthopoxviruses are there? And as Sub-Saharan Africa's population continues to grow and forests are cleared out to make space for humans, what other potential lethal viruses will start to emerge??
Even though this poxvirus was found in monkeys, it is believed that it has natural host that is unknown.
Virus really are all around us, many of them we don't even know about, especially in those cryptic rain forests!

No comments:

Post a Comment