According to the New England Journal of Medicine, a novel henipavirus has been discovered in the Shandong and central Henan provinces of China.
The novel virus has infected 35 people thus far. Of the 35 infected patients, 26 were infected exclusively with the Langya virus (LayV). The 26 patient’s symptoms were:
- fever (100%)
- fatigue (54%)
- cough (50%)
- anorexia (50%)
- myalgia (46%)
- nausea (38%)
- headache (35%)
- vomiting (35%)
Contact tracing efforts revealed that the infections were “sporadic” and that there was no temporal or spatial aggregation of human cases. Nine patients were investigated for transmission to close-contact family members. None showed any transmission of the Langya virus, but scientists in the research paper suggest that the “sample size was too small to determine the status of human-to-human transmission.” The study suggests that the shrew may be a “reservoir” for the Langya virus, and notes that the virus was also found in some dogs and goats that were tested.
The World Health Organization cites Nipah virus as having a 40-75% fatality rate and there is no known cure or vaccine. The CDC cites the Hendra virus, another form of henipavirus, as having a 57% fatality rate.
But this novel virus thus far has not killed any of the 35 patients.
If you’d like to read more about Nipah viruses, check out this article by EcoHealth Alliance’s Peter Daszak (yes, that Peter Daszak) or perhaps check the US funding of EcoHealth Alliance’s research into Nipah viruses.
You can also read up on the NIAID’s new clinical trial of a Nipah virus mRNA vaccine. How convenient. In the article, Dr. Anthony Fauci states:
Nipah virus poses a considerable pandemic threat because it mutates relatively easily, causes disease in a wide range of mammals, can transmit from person-to-person, and kills a large percentage of the people it infects. The need for a preventive Nipah virus vaccine is significant.
Bill Gates, the Microsoft inventor/CEO turned epidemiologist wrote in his blog back in 2018:
With funding commitments of more than $630 million, CEPI’s first order of business is advancing the development of vaccines for three of the priority diseases on the WHO list for public health R&D: Lassa fever, Nipah virus, and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.