Thursday , June 24 2021

The Ebola virus was first discovered in a bat

26.01.2019 08.41

Online today, 8:41

The highly dangerous Ebola virus was first discovered in a bat in West Africa. Further research should reveal whether more bats are affected and how they spread the virus, the Liberian Ministry of Health said.

Useful for "strategies against further epidemics"

"This information will help us develop strategies to reduce the risk of further outbreaks," the report said. Antibodies to the virus have previously been found in bats in the region.

Genome analysis has shown a high degree of consensus with the Zaire-Ebola virus, which caused the Ebola devastating outbreak with about 11,000 dead in West Africa in 2014/2015,

"This is important because we did not know how the epidemic had occurred in West Africa," said the German Press Agency analyst. Now more can be found for Ebola, including how the virus will be transmitted to humans.

Investigations continue

The find has not yet been published in a known scientific publication, as investigations are still ongoing. So far only DNA of about a quarter of the 4000 samples from Liberia has been analyzed, Anthony explained. But above all, it was important for the authorities in Liberia to immediately alert the population to the killing and consumption of bats. Ebola infections are also known from fruit bats.

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