Buying samples of synthetic DNA is surprisingly easy. The trade is overseen by the International Gene Synthesis Consortium, an industry-led group that works with government agencies to screen orders and buyers. But such oversight can’t prevent someone from purchasing hazardous DNA samples on the black market.
After several pox outbreaks in horses and donkeys in Brazil, researchers are still working to understand how the equids got the vaccinia virus, why humans don’t seem to get it from equids, and why some equids get it in a population and others don’t.
Vaccinia virus, a poxvirus closely related to smallpox and monkeypox, tricks cells it has infected into activating their own cell movement mechanism to rapidly spread the virus in cells and mice.
Northern pygmy mice from two localities in East Central Texas had proliferative epidermal lesions on the tail and feet. Electron microscopy of lesion tissue revealed poxvirus. Phylogenetic analyses indicated the virus differed 35% from its closest relatives, the Chordopoxvirinae.
Northern pygmy mice, from two localities in East-Central Texas, had proliferative epidermal lesions on the tail and feet. Electron microscopy of lesion tissue revealed poxvirus. Phylogenetic analyses indicated the virus differed 35 percent from its closest relatives, the chordopoxvirinae.
The eradication of smallpox happened prior to the development of most modern virological and molecular biological techniques.
Research suggests that drugs targeting host molecules involved in DNA replication, damage and repair may be able to be repurposed to protect against poxviruses.
Human infection by orthopoxviruses is being reported more frequently.
Samples from six patients were analyzed and results found the presence of vaccinia virus and pseudocowpox virus.
A fact sheet for monkeypox.