The outbreak is centered on humans, not animals, health officials said, after a report that some monkeys were harmed in São Paulo, Brazil, out of fear of transmission, according to local authorities.
Driving in the city is on the rise, but if New Yorkers think they can avoid rats this way, they are in for quite the surprise.
Studies help explore the ways that animals — whether bold or shy, aggressive or meek, interact with their environment.
Many people might already think of the nation’s capital as a political rat’s nest, teeming with rat-related features, like underground networks and crowded backrooms where any faint smell of betrayal could send lawmakers scurrying. But Washington, DC, is also a den of literal rats. And it’s creating a concerning risk of viral spillover for residents.
In a report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, DC health officials ratted out the first two known cases of hantavirus spillover in the city. The virus festers quietly in rats and other rodent populations, but in humans it can cause potentially deadly respiratory and hemorrhagic diseases. Humans pick up the infection by direct contact with rodent urine or nest dust or by breathing in aerosolized viral particles from urine, droppings, or saliva. There’s also the possibility that the virus can spread from rat bites, but this is less common. Once in a human, the virus almost never jumps from human to human.
Fortunately for DC residents, the type of hantavirus found in the city is one of the milder types: an “Old World” hantavirus called the Seoul virus. Old World hantaviruses cause a disease called Hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome. HFRS can start out like a generic infection with fever, chills, nausea, and headache. But it can progress to low blood pressure, acute shock, vascular leakage, and acute kidney failure, the CDC notes. The severity of HFRS varies by which hantavirus you catch, but fatality rates can reach up to 15 percent. The Seoul virus is one of the milder forms, with a fatality rate of only about 1 percent. As such, in both of the cases reported by DC health officials, the infected individuals recovered.
F.D.A. inspectors said that a fumigation of the West Memphis, Ark., distribution center last month revealed more than 1,100 dead rodents. A far-reaching recall has been issued for stores in six states.
For the past year, scientists have been looking for the source of strange coronavirus sequences that have appeared in the city’s wastewater.
Simple activities like walking boost immune cells in the brain that may help to keep memory sharp and even ward off Alzheimer’s disease.
Reported rat sightings, health inspections finding evidence of rat activity and cases of a disease spread via rat urine are all up amid the pandemic.
Some $40,000 later, they could finally start thinking about updating the house they bought in Farmington, Conn.
For half a year, the rodents have been chewing their way around the country’s eastern grain belt, leaving economic and psychological scars.
Infected rodents pose no immediate danger to humans, but the research suggests that mutations are helping the coronavirus expand its range of potential hosts.
The springhare — whose coat glows a patchy pinkish-orange under UV light — joins the platypus and other mammals with this perplexing trait.
Much as small mammals outlived the dinosaur extinction, this rodent beat the odds when Pinatubo blew its top in the Philippines in 1991.
The African crested rat gnaws on poisonous tree branches, then grooms its noxious spittle into its fur.
The scheme involved thousands of flying squirrels that were captured in less than three years and were exported to Asia, the officials said.
Magawa, a 5-year-old African giant pouched rat, was recognized with a prestigious honor for his work detecting mines and explosives in Cambodia.
Sitting may confuse cellular sensors into thinking we are lighter than we are, prompting the body to put on weight.
Exercise prompts the liver to pump out a little-known protein that appears to rejuvenates the brain, a new study found.
The government has moved slowly to permanently stop the sale and consumption of wild animals in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic, raising fears the practice may continue.
“They’re simply turning on each other” after being deprived of food and waste generated by restaurants that have closed during the pandemic, an expert said.
In animals, weight training appeared to promote the creation of new neurons in the memory centers of the brain.