Navigation Links
Great apes endangered by human viruses
Date:1/25/2008

This release is available in German.

A new study published in the journal Current Biology by researchers of the Robert Koch Institute (Berlin), the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (Leipzig) and the Centre Suisse des Recherches Scientifiques (Ivory Coast) confirms the disease threat, finding the first direct evidence of virus transmission from humans to wild apes. The study also showed however that research and tourism projects strongly suppressed the poaching of chimpanzees. This protective effect outweighed the substantial chimpanzee mortality caused by human disease introduction.

Respiratory disease introduction by humans has long been suspected at sites where apes in the wild have been in close contact to humans but this is the first study to diagnose the disease agent and quantify the population impact. "We need to be much more proactive about instituting strict hygiene precautions at all ape tourism and research sites", says Fabian Leendertz, senior author of the paper and a wildlife disease epidemiologist at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin. "One possibility for promoting compliance is a certification process similar to the green labelling system now used in the timber industry."

The study used a multidisciplinary approach involving behavioural ecology, veterinary medicine, virology and population biology to track human disease introduction into two chimpanzee communities at Taï National Park in Côte d’Ivoire, where researchers first began to habituate chimpanzees to human presence in 1982. Tissue samples taken from chimpanzees that had died in a series of outbreaks dating back to 1999 tested positive for two human respiratory viruses that are major sources of human infant mortality in the developing world, namely human respiratory syncytial virus and human metapneumovirus. Viral strains sampled from the chimpanzees were closely related to pandemic strains concurrently circulating in human populations as far away as China and Argentina, suggesting recent introduction from humans into the chimpanzees. The authors also used clinical observations and demographic analyses to infer that similar respiratory outbreaks could date as far back as 1986.

The research project has however also had strongly positive effects. Longitudinal surveys showed that the presence of researchers had suppressed poaching activities in the surrounding area. Consequently, chimpanzee densities at both the research study site and a nearby chimpanzee tourism site were much higher than would be expected given their accessibility to poachers. "Researcher presence is confirmed to have a major positive impact on the protection of an area," says co-author Christophe Boesch of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI-EVA) in Leipzig, who directs the research project at Taï. "However, it comes with some hygienic problems which need to be addressed".

"The study confirms that multidisciplinary research is needed to investigate different issues involved in ape conservation", said Paul N'Goran, a researcher at the Centre Suisse de Recherches Scientifiques en Cote d'Ivoire. "Our study shows the critical role that scientific research can play in monitoring the impact and effectiveness of conservation strategies".


'/>"/>

Contact: Sandra Jacob
info@eva.mpg.de
49-341-355-0122
Max-Planck-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. New report finds great potential for Swedish medical technology
2. Great potential to improve collection, recycling of Europes electronic waste, says UN report
3. Great Ape Trust awards $127,000 for international conservation efforts
4. Meteor no longer prime suspect in great extinction
5. RIT to study air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions in the Great Lakes region
6. Great Plains historical stability vulnerable to future changes
7. Clones on task serve greater good, evolutionary study shows
8. Childhood obesity indicates greater risk of school absenteeism, Penn study reveals
9. Critically endangered porpoise is focus of new research report
10. Worlds most endangered gorilla fights back
11. Critically endangered Amur leopard captured
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Great apes endangered by human viruses
(Date:3/1/2017)... BEDFORD, Mass. , March 1, 2017  Aware, ... and services, announced that Richard P. Moberg ... Officer and co-President and Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer ... will continue to serve as a member of the ... T. Russell , Aware,s co-Chief Executive Officer and co-President, ...
(Date:2/27/2017)...   Strategic Cyber Ventures , the industry,s first ... $3.5 million investment in  Polarity , the first commercial ... DC based and is led by cybersecurity veterans ... Ron Gula , also a longtime cybersecurity veteran and ... series A round of funding. This new funding will ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... and PORTLAND, Ore. , ... and the Avamere Family of Companies (Avamere Health Services, ... announced a six-month research study that will apply the ... eldercare at senior living and health centers. By analyzing ... hopes to gain insights into physical and environmental conditions, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... VILLAGE, Colo. , March 23, 2017  Agriculture ... in Series A financing and note conversion to commercialize ... Cool Planet is focused on developing products that are ... nearly $30 million in the last 18 months. This ... and North Bridge Venture Partners. The ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 22, 2017  Ascendis Pharma A/S (Nasdaq: ASND), ... technology to address significant unmet medical needs in ... full year ended December 31, 2016. ... company as we broadened our pipeline and pursued ... disease company with an initial focus on endocrinology," ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ALBANY, New York , March 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... market is largely fragmented, states a research report by ... Sanofi S.A., Pfizer Inc., Amgen Inc., and AbbVie Inc., ... market in 2015. The prominent players in this market ... to expand their product portfolio, which is likely to ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ... March 21, 2017 , ... Premier executive recruitment firm, Slone Partners, is ... by Hunt Scanlon Media. , Hunt Scanlon Media is one of the ... global news source in the human capital sector. , “It is a great honor ...
Breaking Biology Technology: