A new virus that has the potential of triggering another global pandemic has been identified by Chinese scientists. This time around, pigs are the carriers.
According to a recent entry in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Chinese researchers have been able to identify a new strain of the flu found in pigs that has the potential of reaching a global pandemic level. Researchers are currently worried that the new strain of influenza might mutate into something that humans are more susceptible to, and according to the scientists that identified the virus, it has "all the hallmarks" of being highly adapted to infect humans.
The virus is called G4 EA H1N1 and is very similar to the Swine flu that we saw back in 2009, but it does have some changes to it. This new virus can grow and multiply in the cells that line human airways, and researchers have already found evidence of infection in people who are working in abattoirs and the swine industry in China. At the moment, current flu vaccines don't protect against this virus, but researchers are hoping that with a few adjustments to the vaccine that they can provide protection.
According to Professor, Kin-Chow Chang, who works at Nottingham University in the UK, "Right now we are distracted with coronavirus and rightly so. But we must not lose sight of potentially dangerous new viruses." At the moment, the new virus isn't an immediate threat, but as Kin-Chow Chang, "We should not ignore it".
If you are interested in reading more about this new virus, check out this link here.
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Last updated: Jun 30, 2020 at 07:02 pm CDT
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