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Arkansas Confirms Human Infection with Rodent Virus

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A new and dangerous virus has been discovered in the state of Arkansas, and it’s the first of its kind to be detected in the area. Known as Hantavirus, this virus is typically found in rodents, but it has now been confirmed in a human in Arkansas.

The discovery was made by a research team from the University of Arkansas, who set out to identify the different types of Hantaviruses present in the state. Lead researcher Nathaniel Mull explained that their goal was to identify which Hantaviruses were infecting the rodents in the area, but they did not expect to find a new and previously unknown virus.

The new virus, named the Ozark virus, was found in hispid cotton rats in the Ozarks. Hantaviruses are known to spread within the animal species through droppings and saliva, and it can also be transmitted to humans. The virus is mainly spread to humans when they breathe in air that is contaminated with the virus.

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The symptoms of Hantavirus infection can initially appear as severe flu, and may develop into cardio-pulmonary symptoms or complications. If left untreated, the virus can lead to Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, which includes symptoms such as fever, fatigue, nausea, and vomiting. If the disease progresses, it can cause shortness of breath and fluid in the lungs.

While there is no known human-to-human transmission of Hantavirus, it is important to seek treatment if infected. The virus has a 38% risk of death, but it can be treated if caught early. Currently, there is one confirmed case of a human infected with the virus in Arkansas.

This discovery of a new Hantavirus in the state underscores the importance of understanding and monitoring these types of viruses, especially given their potential to spread to humans. Efforts to track and study Hantaviruses are crucial for the prevention and treatment of these potentially deadly infections.

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