Le virus de la variole du singe est un orthopoxvirus. © dottedyeti, Adobe Stock

Monkeypox: Did the eradication of smallpox pave the way for the current situation?

To understand why monkeypox is currently spreading outside of Africa, a continent where it is endemic in several countries, let’s go back in time, just after smallpox vaccination ended, when populations were exposed to the monkeypox virus , remained unprotected.

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On May 8, 1980 on the occasion of the 33e World Health Assembly, Smallpox is officially declared extinct : ” All peoples of the world are now free from smallpox. This is the result of a campaign by vaccination Conducted by Health for 10 years: What is the WHO?
As stated in its statute, the WHO aims to bring all people to the highest level of health…” data-image=”https://cdn.futura-sciences.com/buildsv6/images/midioriginal/c/ 0/3 /c0318e9153_101519_oms-logo.jpg” data-url=”https://news.google.com/sante/definitions/medecine-oms-4321/” data-more=”Read more “>WHO, during which half a billion smallpox boxes were distributed worldwide. With it, a disease known since ancient times, which was fatal in 30% of cases and was responsible for 300 million deaths in the 20th century, disappeared.e Century.

If smallpox eradication is an undeniable victory, it has two negative consequences: the children born after the vaccination campaign ends are not protected against the disease, raising fears of a bioterrorist attack; a problem quickly solved by rich countries hoarding doses of it vaccinations in the freezer. The second consequence affects African countries where monkeypox is endemic, for example a medical term describing a disease or disorder that is persistent in a specific region or in a specific group of people.” data-url= “https://news . google.com/sante/definitions/medecine-endemique-2258/” data-more=”Read the definition”>endemic. The smallpox vaccine also protected the local population from this other orthopoxvirus. To respond to concerns, the WHO established surveillance for monkeypox between 1981 and 1986, after which it concluded that the disease was not a major public health concern. People who come into contact with monkeypox therefore have no alternative to protect themselves from the virus.

Monkeypox explodes with reduced smallpox immunity

A conclusion that resonates oddly in the current situation. As a matter of fact, a study published in 2010 and conducted by scientists at the school Los Angeles School of Public Health concludes that the thirty years after the cessation of smallpox vaccination In epidemiology, incidence refers to the number of new cases of a disease that have occurred during a given period. For example, an increase in incidence can be observed… cute-wiki-dp.jpg” data-url=”https://news.google.com/sante/definitions/medicine-incidence-13469/ ” data-more=” Read more”>A hit Monkeypox has increased by a factor of 20 in monitored areas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the country where the virus is most active. Surveillance data collected by scientists between 2005 and 2007 indicates that the decline inherd immunity against smallpox, more frequent contact with animal virus reservoirs and the increase in human-to-human contagion are the cause of the cases. Most of those infected are boys under the age of 15, born after smallpox vaccination was stopped. The scientists state in their paper: Based on our surveillance program, we observed that the risk of contracting monkeypox was inversely associated with the smallpox vaccine. Vaccinated people are 5.21 times less likely to get monkeypox than unvaccinated people. »

Another, more controversial theory holds that the disappearance of smallpox would have vacated an ecological niche, a concept whose definition is disputed across disciplines and which presents an opportunity for monkeypox to occupy it. This view is supported and detailed by University of California scientist James O. Lloyd-Smith in a 2013 publication that he signed alone. He writes : ” Therefore, eradication can lead to a quantitative increase in the incidence of another infection, but if this leads to figuratively: sudden emergence of an idea, social, economic, political fact.
The term emergence is used in many areas.
Outside…” data-image=”https://cdn.futura-sciences.com/buildsv6/images/midioriginal/4/e/f/4ef87a3a65_50036395_papillon-chrysalis-bernard-schmeltz.jpg” data-url=” https ://news.google.com/planete/definitions/zoologie-emergence-8743/” data-more=”Read more”>emergence as an agent pathogenic endemic depends on other factors.
No scientific data has so far formally confirmed this theory.

A link to the current situation?

The fact remains that the end of smallpox vaccination and increasing globalization in the years that followed made this possible monkeypox virus to thrive and leave the African continent from 2003, above of dogs contaminated meadows and several times in 2018 and 2019 before the situation as we know it today occurred. Monkeypox is the most common orthopoxvirus in humans. The smallpox vaccines will come out of the freezer to limit the spread of the monkeypox virus and to immunize infected people and their contacts. From now on, Human-to-human transmission of the monkeypox virus affects 23 countries outside of Africa. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the monkeypox virus is still alive and 56 people have died from the disease since the beginning of the year; so far none in western countries.

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