A senior World Health Organization official said a genetic analysis of the ongoing Ebola outbreak in Guinea suggests that it may have been triggered by survivors of the devastating outbreak in Africa. The West that expired five years ago.
During a press talk in Geneva, WHO’s emergency chief Drs. Michael Ryan called the results of genetic sequencing of the virus in Guinea “quite remarkable”.
African and German scientists posted their findings on a virology website on Friday, concluding that the current virus, which is making people sick in Guinea, is similar to the virus that triggered a widespread outbreak in West Africa.
“More studies will be needed,” Ryan said. But he said that based on available genetic sequencing data, the current outbreak was unlikely to be related to the animals, which began with all previous outbreaks. “[Ceci] More likely to be strongly connected [du virus] Or latency of infection in humans. “Ryan said that this would probably be the longest period when the virus outbreak increases.
Scientists have previously documented survivors who inadvertently infected others long after their recovery, but these rare cases did not lead to an epidemic. In 2018, doctors published a study on a Liberian woman who contracted Ebola in 2014, but then infected three loved ones nearly a year later.
Health officials have also warned that men can sometimes infect other people through sexual activity until they are recovered – the virus can remain in semen for more than a year.
The rare possibility of a prolonged spread after infection highlights the importance of monitoring survivors, and Ryan warns against their stigma. He said that most people suffering from the disease clean the virus from their system and recover within six months.
Ryan said that a small fraction of people eradicate the virus, but is not contagious to others “except under very special circumstances”.
He said that so far there were 18 cases of Ebola in Guinea and the WHO had sent more than 30,000 doses of the vaccine to the country.