Feeds

Bats fingered for Ebola deaths

Central African vector

Top three mobile application threats

Bats could be responsible for spreading Ebola among human and ape populations in central Africa, scientists have claimed in Nature. Three species, all of which "had a geographical range that included regions where human outbreaks of Ebola had occurred", did not show any signs of infection, but offered "genetic evidence or an immune response" as signs of their guilt.

The research, carried out by the International Center for Medical Research in Franceville, Gabon, involved capturing more than 1,000 bats in Ebola-infected areas between 2001 and 2003. Team member Eric Leroy told Nature: "We find evidence of asymptomatic infection by Ebola virus in three species of fruit bat, indicating that these animals may be acting as a reservoir for this deadly virus."

Ebola is transmitted by bodily fluids. People in Ebola-infected zones regularly eat bats, which the researchers believe may partially explain the 240+ dead in 1995 in Democratic Republic of Congo, and several outbreaks between 2001 and 2005 in the same country and in Gabon which accounted for 254 victims. Leroy said: "Human infection directly from fruit bats might in part be countered by education, as these animals are eaten by local populations living in the outbreak regions."

Ebola kills between 50 and 90 per cent of victims, depending on the strain. According to the WHO, it is characterised by "sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat... often followed by vomiting, diarrhoea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function, and in some cases, both internal and external bleeding." ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
R.I.P. LADEE: Probe smashes into lunar surface at 3,600mph
Swan dive signs off successful science mission
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.