China reports first human death due to Monkey B Virus; Here’s all you need to know about it

19 July, 2021 | Ojasvi Chauhan

Monkey B Virus National

A Beijing based veterinary surgeon was infected with the virus after he dissected two dead monkeys in early March.

China has reported its first-ever human death due to the Monkey B virus (MV). A Beijing-based vet succumbed to the virus after showing symptoms like severe vomiting and nausea. The news arrives in at the heels of the ongoing pandemic caused due to the novel Coronavirus that broke out from Wuhan, China.

 As per the statement by China CDC Weekly English Platform of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the anonymous Beijing-based vet had checked two dead monkeys in his lab during early March. Soon after which he exhibited severe vomiting and nausea following which he was hospitalized. He underwent medical treatment at many healthcare facilities, however, the 53-year-old died on May 27. The late vet worked as a researcher at an institution that researched human primates.

 The vet tested positive for the virus after the authorities studied the monkeys’ samples from their cerebrospinal fluid. Although, his colleagues and primary contacts tested negative for the same virus. The news of the death of the vet has rung alarm bells across the globe. 

 The Monkey B virus or the Macanine Herpesvirus 1 is a virus infecting macaque monkeys. The virus has a composition similar to the HSV-1, which means it is neurotropic and infests the blood. According to the Chinese CDC, the Monkey B virus exhibits pathogens similar to that of cold sores in humans. It can be transmitted via direct contact and exchange of body flows and has a mortality rate of 70-80 percent. The principal indicators of the virus are similar to that of flu, that is, fever, chills, muscle aches, and fatigue. However, this can lead to evident rash-itchy bruises and pain or numbness around them. The virus also causes muscle coordination, brain damage, and death as well.