Chinese scientists have identified a new influenza virus that has the potential to become a pandemic in the future. This new strain of flu virus has recently emerged and is found in pigs. There are high chances that it is transferable to humans too. The complete details on this new virus are recently published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
This virus has made the researchers worried due to its mutations. If it mutates further, it has the potential to cause another outbreak as it will become easily transferable from person to person.
At this moment it’s not a problem. However, scientists say it has “all the hallmarks” to easily adapt to infect humans and needs monitoring. And because it is a new influenza virus, people may have a little to none immunity against it.
The new influenza virus is among the top threats related to health that is worrying about the experts. The world hasn’t even controlled the current coronavirus pandemic yet and now there is a new virus in the market. 2020 is an eventful year so far.
Previously, the world faced a swine flu pandemic in the outbreak of 2009. However, the swine flu killed fewer people then the scientists feared initially. Moreover, it had similarities with other flu infections before so that’s why people had immunity to counter it.
This new influenza virus is similar to the one the world encountered in 2009 but it has some differences. As of now, it is not too dangerous but researchers believe they need to keep an eye on this one.
Researchers call this virus G4 EA H1N1. It can grow and multiply itself in the cells. It infected the people working in slaughterhouses and swine industry from 2011 to 2018, scientists used them as evidence of this new influenza virus. The flu vaccines available right now are not enough to protect against it. However, with some tweaks, they may able to adapt.
A pandemic like this can occur at any time in theory, but it is still very rare for such things to happen. Pandemics only occur when a new virus is easily transferable from one person to another. Although flu infections are evolving daily that’s why scientists should make vaccines that can adapt. Flu viruses usually don’t turn into a pandemic.
This virus has the potential to attach to human cells. And not just any human cells but the cells that are close to the trachea. The trachea connects the upper respiratory tract with the lower respiratory tract. If a virus attaches there, it will without doubt make its way to the lungs.
Just because the covid19 pandemic is currently at large and people are dying by the thousands daily, doesn’t mean that other viruses are on vacation. Viruses have a bad habit of mutating and reproducing, and that’s exactly what they are doing around the world. Now and then a new virus will emerge that will transfer from animals to humans and then from humans to humans.
Therefore, the world needs to be ready for the next pandemic because it’s a matter of when not if the next pandemic will arrive.