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Monkeypox Outbreak: “This Is an Entirely New Spread of the Disease”

Electron micrograph of monkeypox virus particles isolated in 2003 in the United States from human samples (left, mature, oval viruses; right, immature, round viruses). Credit: CDC

One thousand confirmed cases of monkeypox, an infectious disease originating in Africa, have been recorded since early May across at least 30 non-endemic countries such as the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Spain, Portugal, Australia, United Arab Emirates, and Israel.

But what is this virus? Who is affected? And should we be worried about the recent surge in cases?

In an effort to answer these questions and more, we caught up with Camille Besombes, a medical doctor specializing in infectious diseases, who has been involved for the past three years in Afripox, a project that aims to gain a better understanding of the virus in its endemic region. She is currently conducting Ph.D. research within the unit headed by the project’s coordinator, Arnaud Fontanet, a leading medical epidemiologist and emerging infectious disease specialist at the Pasteur Institute.

Source: SciTechDaily