Dozens of people in China have contracted a new virus found in shrews, although there is no proof of human-to-human transmission at this time.
According to research published this month in the New England Journal of Medicine, 35 persons in China’s eastern Shandong and central Henan provinces had contracted the virus.
The virus is known as Langya henipavirus or LayV, and patients have reported fever, lethargy, cough, nausea, and headaches as symptoms.
In addition, some individuals had blood cell abnormalities and reduced liver and renal function.
Research reveals that shrews may be a natural reservoir for the disease.
According to the report, “there was no direct contact or shared exposure history among the patients, suggesting that the infection in the human population may be random.”
However, the researchers emphasized that their sample size was insufficient to evaluate the state of human-to-human transmission of LayV.
The majority of patients were farmers, and cases were identified using a detection technique for those with severe fever and a history of animal exposure, according to the report.
Researchers from China, Singapore, and Australia who contributed to the publication believe that more research is required to comprehend the disorders connected with the virus entirely.
Cases of Langya henipavirus have not proven deadly or extremely severe to date, Linfa Wang of the Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore told the Chinese state-run publication Global Times.
Wang was one of the researchers who contributed to the article.
According to the World Health Organization, zoonoses are transmissible animal diseases that account for many new and existing human conditions.
Some are vaccine-preventable, while others evolve into human-only strains or produce repeated outbreaks.