Business Standard

Bats host most virulent, but not most dangerous zoonotic viruses: Study

The results suggest that zoonotic virus risk assessments should incorporate longitudinal studies of epidemiological dynamics and should not be limited to surveillance of specific animal populations

influenza

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ANI Science
Most infectious diseases like Ebola, severe acute respiratory syndrome among other deadly viruses seem to be linked to bats. Now, researchers studying zoonotic viral risks across animal reservoirs have found that bats host the most virulent but not always the most dangerous ones.
A study of statistical trends in case fatality rates, transmission capacities, and total death burdens in humans across a dataset of 89 mammalian and avian zoonotic viruses found that bats are reservoirs for the most virulent viruses.
The study that appears in the journal PNAS found that primates harbor less virulent but more highly transmissible viruses, and disproportionately high human death burdens were associated with diverse traits specific to the viruses themselves rather than being associated with any particular animal reservoir.
The results suggest that zoonotic virus risk assessments should incorporate longitudinal studies of epidemiological dynamics and should not be limited to surveillance of specific animal populations, according to the authors.
Bats harbour the most virulent zoonotic viruses even when compared to birds, which alongside bats have been hypothesized to be special zoonotic reservoirs due to molecular adaptations that support the physiology of flight, finds the study.
The results suggest that zoonotic virus risk assessments should incorporate longitudinal studies of epidemiological dynamics and should not be limited to surveillance of specific animal populations, according to the authors.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Mar 30 2022 | 9:37 AM IST

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