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WHO puts Nipah Virus on a list of pathogens that endanger humanity.

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  • WHO puts Nipah Virus on a list of pathogens that endanger humanity.

    WHO: World needs to prepare for the next virus

    Experts warn of a newer and more deadly virus that has been identified in Southeast Asia
    Shlomo Witty , Feb 21 , 2021 9:45 PM
    The World Health Organization today (Sunday) took the first step in fighting a possible outbreak of the ‘Nipah’ virus, which causes an incurable disease that kills two-thirds of patients, and put the virus on a list of pathogens that endanger humanity.

    The inclusion of the deadly virus on the list will enable funding for research and search for drugs and treatments for the serious illness caused by exposure to the virus, which originated in fruit bats and last erupted in China. According to a report in the British "Sun", the biggest concern among experts is from a variant of Nipah disease that will turn out to be more contagious to humans.

    Israel Hayom quotes Dr. Jonathan Epstein, vice president of the EcoHealth Alliance, the world's largest non-governmental organization for infectious diseases, explained to Sun: "We know very little about the genetic diversity of ‘Nipah’ in bats, and what we fear is a strain that is more contagious to humans.”....

  • #2
    Nipah virus dynamics in bats and implications for spillover to humans

    November 2, 2020;

    Jonathan H. Epstein, Simon J. Anthony, Ariful Islam, A. Marm Kilpatrick, Shahneaz Ali Khan, Maria D. Balkey, Noam Ross, Ina Smith, Carlos Zambrana-Torrelio, Yun Tao, Ausraful Islam, Phenix Lan Quan, Kevin J. Olival,
    M. Salah Uddin Khan, Emily S. Gurley, M. Jahangir Hossein, Hume E. Field, Mark D. Fielder, Thomas Briese, Mahmudur Rahman, Christopher C. Broder, Gary Crameri, Lin-Fa Wang, Stephen P. Luby, W. Ian Lipkin, and Peter Daszak

    PNAS November 17, 2020 117 (46) 29190-29201; first published November 2, 2020;

    Edited by Anthony S. Fauci, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, MD, and approved September 14, 2020 (received for review January 8, 2020)


    Nipah virus (NiV) is a zoonotic virus and World Health Organization (WHO) priority pathogen that causes near-annual outbreaks in Bangladesh and India with >75% mortality. This work advances our understanding of transmission of NiV in its natural bat reservoir by analyzing data from a 6-y multidisciplinary study of serology, viral phylogenetics, bat ecology, and immunology. We show that outbreaks in Pteropus bats are driven by increased population density, loss of immunity over time, and viral recrudescence, resulting in multiyear interepizootic periods. Incidence is low, but bats carry NiV across Bangladesh and can shed virus at any time of year, highlighting the importance of routes of transmission to the timing and location of human NiV outbreaks.


    Nipah virus (NiV) is an emerging bat-borne zoonotic virus that causes near-annual outbreaks of fatal encephalitis in South Asia—one of the most populous regions on Earth. In Bangladesh, infection occurs when people drink date-palm sap contaminated with bat excreta. Outbreaks are sporadic, and the influence of viral dynamics in bats on their temporal and spatial distribution is poorly understood. We analyzed data on host ecology, molecular epidemiology, serological dynamics, and viral genetics to characterize spatiotemporal patterns of NiV dynamics in its wildlife reservoir, Pteropus medius bats, in Bangladesh. We found that NiV transmission occurred throughout the country and throughout the year. Model results indicated that local transmission dynamics were modulated by density-dependent transmission, acquired immunity that is lost over time, and recrudescence. Increased transmission followed multiyear periods of declining seroprevalence due to bat-population turnover and individual loss of humoral immunity. Individual bats had smaller host ranges than other Pteropus species (spp.), although movement data and the discovery of a Malaysia-clade NiV strain in eastern Bangladesh suggest connectivity with bats east of Bangladesh. These data suggest that discrete multiannual local epizootics in bat populations contribute to the sporadic nature of NiV outbreaks in South Asia. At the same time, the broad spatial and temporal extent of NiV transmission, including the recent outbreak in Kerala, India, highlights the continued risk of spillover to humans wherever they may interact with pteropid bats and the importance of limiting opportunities for spillover throughout Pteropus’s range.


    • #3
      For anyone interested in Nipah I would recommend which is an interview with participants at a 2019 Nipah virus conference in Singapore. Lin-fa Wang and Peter Daszak, two of the authors of the paper Mary linked to, are participants.