China reports first death from rare Monkey B virus

The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CCDC) reported this past weekend that a man had died from the rare Monkey B virus (BV).

The virus, which is also referred to as “Macacine alphaherpesvirus 1” by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses, comes from monkeys of the genus Macaca and is generally transmitted through direct contact and bodily fluids. It was first isolated in 1932.

According to the CCDC’s statement, the patient who contracted the virus was a 53-year-old male veterinary surgeon who worked at a Beijing institute that specialized in “nonhuman primate breeding and experimental research.” He had dissected two monkeys on March 4 and 6 of this year and began experiencing nausea, vomiting and fever about a month after.

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