Large Genome Study: 2014-2016 West African Ebola Epidemic Traveled (Mostly) By “Short Hops”…

From late 2013 to 2016, for the first time in the history of infectious diseases — and in an Ebola outbreak (actually, in any real viral epidemic of size) — a vast (near universal) sampling of the blood, and thus the genomes, of infected patients took place. . . .

As the University of Minnesota’s CIDRAP reported last week, this in turn led to a treasure trove of data, about how and where, and when the virus was transmitted, and mutated. Do go read it all — but the learning is that the virus traversed only small geographic distances, in the main. It was spread by very local communities of contact, as a general rule (with urban centers being an exception). Do go read it all, as another study is also detailed there, at CIDRAP:

. . . .The largest genome sample ever analyzed for a human epidemic reveals that the West Africa epidemic unfolded with small, overlapping outbreaks as the virus spread over short distances and that urban settings amplified the spread. . . .

Meanwhile, another study harnessed different advanced scientific tools in the blood of a single sick patient to detail gene-level response during infection. . . .

Now you know — breakfast at the train station diner, with my graduating senior — then a walk to the office, on a flawless Easter Monday. Smile. . . be well, one and all. The Universe will sing midnight rain-songs, tonight, for certain. . . .



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