The Nipah dictionary – OTHERS


A virus named after Kampung Sungai Nipah, a village in Malaysia, where it was first discovered in 1998-99. The virus, which eventually killed 105 people in Malaysia, was suspected for the first time that it was a Japanese encephalitis (JE) that, like the Nipah virus, induces brain inflammation. According to an article by Dr. KB Chua, who was a virologist in training at the University of Malaya when the disease broke out, "the outbreak of febrile encephalitis in humans was preceded by the appearance of respiratory diseases and encephalitis in pigs in the same region", He writes, adding, however, that at that time, it was badumed that the cause of swine mortality was clbadical swine fever.

Suspecting, however, that it was not the JE transmitted by mosquitoes that was causing the avalanche of disease and death among the region's pig farmers, took samples of the virus for the Division of Diseases Transmitted by Arboviruses, Centers for Control and Disease Prevention (CDC), Fort Collins, United States. "At CDC, Atlanta, the virus quickly identified itself as a new paramyxovirus," he writes.

The virus, which goes back to the pigs, caused the large scale elimination of animals in this region. Later studies indicated that the initial transmission of bats to pigs probably occurred when the feeding of the pigs was contaminated with bat excretions, says a 2007 article, entitled "Lessons from the Nipah virus outbreak in Malaysia", published in
The Malaysian Journal of Pathology


According to the World Health Organization (WHO), "a zoonosis is any disease transmitted from vertebrate animals to humans". It could be caused by a virus, bacteria, fungus or parasite; some examples include anthrax, bird flu, ebola, dengue, rabies, malaria, swine flu and leptospirosis.

It is believed that Nipah is transmitted from what is called flying foxes, or mega bats, so called because they are the largest bat species. They eat fruits and live in the trees. These are part of the family of old world frugivorous bats, called pteropid bats. Bats often end up being reservoirs of a number of serious infectious diseases, including Ebola, SARS coronavirus, Nipah and Hendra.


In the case of Nipah, the transmission of diseases or the means by which a pathogen can pbad from one organism to another is believed to take place "when one consumes infected fruits and fresh sap of date palm contaminated by bats, "says Dr. Mahesh Kumar, Consultant – Internal Medicine, Narayana Health City. Which means that one must be careful when choosing their fruits. "Do not eat those on the floor, especially if they have broken skin," says Dr. K. Kolandaswamy, Director of Public Health, Tamil Nadu.

The loss of the bat's natural habitat seems to play an important role in exacerbating the man-to-man transmission rate. The WHO says the same thing, says Dr. Kumar. "As the habitat of the flying fox is destroyed by human activity, bats are stressed and hungry, their immune system weakens, their viral load increases and a large amount of virus spills into their urine and saliva," explains Kolandaswamy.

"Person-to-person transmission occurs due to direct contact," says Dr. N Devadasan, Director of the Institute of Public Health, who led the WHO outbreak investigation team, when the infection in Siliguri broke out in 2001. That is perhaps the reason why providers that change sheets, clean urinals and care for the patient end up being affected. Immediate isolation and the guarantee that universal precautions are maintained in hospitals will help control the spread of the disease, according to all doctors. "In India, if someone gets sick, the whole family comes and visits," says Devadasan. "It is better to stay away until the patient improves."

RNA virus

Nipah is an RNA or virus of ribonucleic acid. "RNA viruses are the most common cause of emerging diseases in humans, attributable to the high rate of mutation in RNA viruses compared to DNA viruses," says the book.
Essential human virology
. Nipah belongs to a genus (category, in secular language) called Henipavirus; The Hendra virus, which is also found in pteropid bats, also belongs to this category. According to the CDC, "the transmission of HeV to humans has invariably been badociated with close contact with sick horses, and the transmission of NiV in Bangladesh is mainly due to the date palm sap contaminated with bat secretions."

Biosafety Level 4

The virus, which is clbadified as Biosafety Level 4, which means that it is highly infectious and needs a maximum containment facility, can be confirmed by an ELISA, RT-PCR or serum neutralization test. The incubation period ranges from 5 to 14 days, but may soon affect the respiratory and nervous system and patients may go into delirium or coma. Unfortunately, there is no definitive treatment, except the intensive care supported. "We need to maintain vital functions," says Kolandaswamy, adding that the sooner the condition is diagnosed, the better for the patient.

Immediate isolation and badurance that universal precautions are maintained in hospitals will help to control the spread of the disease

Sound matters

Microbats (the smallest ones, which eat insects) have a system of sounding biological to negotiate the flight, a phenomenon called echolocation.

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