January 19, 2020
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Germany: Rare virus linked to more fatal encephalitis cases

Scientists in Germany say an evaluation of deadly sleeping sickness cases in Bavaria has actually found that more than two times as numerous as formerly understood were tied to an uncommon animal-borne virus

January 8, 2020, 11: 18 AM

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A review of fatal encephalitis cases in the southern German state of Bavaria has discovered that more than twice as numerous as formerly known were tied to an unusual animal-borne virus, researchers said Wednesday.

The Federal Research Study Institute for Animal Health stated researchers examined brain samples from 56 individuals who passed away in Bavaria in between 1999 and2019 They found proof of Borna illness infection in 8 samples. Along with 6 previously known cases given that the mid-1990 s, this gives 14 the variety of encephalitis deaths in Bavaria linked to the Borna infection over that duration.

The research study released in the current issue of medical journal The Lancet Transmittable Diseases was conducted together with scientists from 4 German universities and Germany‘s Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medication.

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Borna illness infection 1, or BoDV-1, is normally found in horses, sheep and other mammals. It was initially identified as the reason for serious human sleeping sickness in 2018.

The virus is harbored by the bicolored white-toothed shrew and scientists suspect that infections are triggered by contact with the animal’s excrement. While natural human-to-human transmission has actually been ruled out, some cases arised from organ transplants.

Signs of sleeping sickness include fever, serious headaches, speech and gait disorders that can lead to coma within days or a few weeks.

The researchers noted that while BoDV-1 has an extremely high death rate, “the outright variety of infections and hence the risk of infection is approximated to be really low.”

They said the main threat locations in Germany are the states of Bavaria, Thuringia, Saxony-Anhalt and parts of surrounding adjoining states.

Germany will require compulsory alert of BoDV-1 infections from March.

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