A new study has found that the monkeypox virus is rapidly mutating and becoming resistant to drugs and vaccines. The findings, published in the journal Nature, could have major implications for the future ofmonkeypox outbreaks and control.
Monkeypox is a close cousin of smallpox, and like smallpox, it is a highly contagious and potentially deadly disease. There is no currently no cure or prevention for monkeypox, which makes outbreaks particularly dangerous.
In the new study, researchers analyzed data from over 1,000 monkeypox samples collected from outbreaks in Central and West Africa. They found that the virus was constantly mutating, and that these mutations were often associated with resistance to drugs and vaccines.
“The high mutation rate of monkeypox raises the alarming prospect that this virus could eventually become resistant to all existing control measures,” said study senior author Stephen Gire.
The findings highlight the urgent need for better monkeypox control measures, including more effective drugs and vaccines. In the meantime, it is important for health officials to remain vigilant for signs of drug- and vaccine-resistant strains of the virus.
According to a new study published in the journal Nature Medicine, monkeypox – a viral disease that primarily affects monkeys and humans – has undergone mutations that enable it to spread more rapidly and evade drugs and vaccines. The study findings have important implications for the control and treatment of monkeypox outbreaks.
Monkeypox is a member of the poxvirus family, which includes the smallpox virus. The disease is endemic in central and western Africa, where it is typically transmitted to humans from infected animals. Outbreaks of monkeypox have been reported in Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo.
Since the last major outbreak of monkeypox in Nigeria in 2017, there have been increasing concerns about the ability of the virus to spread rapidly and cause severe illness. The new study, conducted by an international team of researchers, has found that the monkeypox virus has acquired mutations that enable it to replicate more efficiently in human cells and resist the effects of drugs and vaccines.
The researchers analyzed samples of the monkeypox virus from outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2018 and 2019, and found that it had acquired two key mutations. One of these mutations, called A359V, is known to increase the ability of the virus to replicate in human cells. The other mutation, called TGH542A, is thought to help the virus evade the immune response.
The study authors say that the findings highlight the need for better surveillance of monkeypox outbreaks and the development of more effective drugs and vaccines. They also point to the importance of reducing the number of people who are exposed to infected animals.