A man who survived Ebola 5 years ago could be the source of the new outbreak in Guinea

A man who survived Ebola 5 years ago could be the source of the new outbreak in Guinea

American virologist Angela Rasmussen described this discovery as “extremely shocking”. “A virus like Ebola is not known to survive in the body for a long time without doing anything,” she says. Science.

Sexual transmission

After the outbreak between 2013 and 2016, it was discovered that the virus sometimes remained for a short time in places in the human body that were “ immune ” to it. Such as the brain, placenta, eyes, and testicles.

Analyzes of the virus in the current outbreak indicate that it is likely to be transmitted via semen. Virologists have already seen sexual transmission of Ebola virus as the source of accidental infection and minor local outbreaks.

The fact that the virus remains “dormant” for five years in an otherwise healthy body is what French infectious disease specialist Eric Delaporte calls “frightening and new.”

English virologist Miles Carroll says research and data are essential for vaccination and local health advice. It is expected that in the future there will be a greater focus on communication about sexual health.

29 injuries and 13 deaths

The outbreak in Guinea has so far resulted in 29 cases and 13 deaths. Researchers concluded in at least four people that the virus was barely different from an outbreak more than five years ago. At that time, the Ebola virus in West Africa had killed 11,000 people.

Congo suffered from an Ebola outbreak in 2019. In order to contain the virus as quickly as possible, strict rules are also in place at funerals:

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the doctors Then the current outbreak was tracked down in Guinea A nurse from Nazrikor fell ill and died at the end of January. Eight people who attended her funeral subsequently developed symptoms. At least three of them died at that time. Later tests revealed that they were infected with the Ebola virus.

Precautionary measures

Guinea is not the only country in the region currently facing an Ebola outbreak. Liberian President George Weah expressed his concern and called on his country’s health authorities last month to increase their vigilance over the outbreak in neighboring Guinea. After that, preventive measures were taken and supervision was tightened.

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