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Syrian Hamsters Dead After Chinese Scientists Engineer Horrific Ebola-Enhanced Virus

Syrian Hamsters Dead After Chinese Scientists Engineer Horrific Ebola-Enhanced Virus

A group of Chinese scientists have engineered a new virus in which they took a common animal disease (vesicular stomatitis virus, or VSV) and added parts of Ebola in order to mimic Ebola symptoms in a lab setting using animals.

The result? A group of Syrian hamsters that received the lethal injection “developed severe systemic diseases similar to those observed in human Ebola patients, including multi-organ failure, the Daily Mail reports, citing the team’s study.

The team studied five female and five male hamsters that were three weeks old – all but two of which died between two and three days. The females – all of which died, showed decreased rectal temperature and up to 18% weight loss, the males lost 15% of their weight and died – except two, which survived and gained 20% more weight than they started with.

Some of the infected hamsters developed disgusting secretions in their eyes, which impaired vision and resulted in scabs on the surface of their eyeballs.

Upon harvesting the organs from the deceased animals, they found the virus in various organs – including the heart, liver, spleen, lung, kidney, stomach, intestines and brain tissues – with the highest concentrations found in the liver, and the lowest found in the brain.

The group of female hamsters also had  multi-organ failure

According to the scientists, “It is a sign that 3-week-old Syrian hamsters infected with VSV-EBOV/GP have the possibility of playing a role in the study of optic nerve disorders caused by EVD.” 

The team concluded that the infected hamsters showed a rapid onset of symptoms, shock liver, systemic infection, and developed severe systemic diseases similar to those observed in human EBOV patients.

They also noted that the experiments provided a rapid preclinical evaluation of medical countermeasures against Ebola under BLS-2 conditions, concluding the study was a success. -Daily Mail

Are we in danger?

According to Dr. Richerd Ebright, a Rutgers University chemical biologist, it’s unlikely that a lab leak involving VSV would lead to widespread infection in the public.

“[It] will be imperative to verify that the novel chimeric virus does not infect and replicate in human cells, and does not pose risk of infectivity, transmissibility, and pathogenicity in humans, before proceeding with studies at biosafety level 2,” he said.

So, not yet.


Wed, 05/08/2024 – 07:45

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