Are bin chickens spreading deadly diseases? Anjana Karawita and his colleagues at CSIRO’s Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness in Geelong are investigating the role of Australian ibis in spreading Japanese encephalitis virus
Australia experienced the largest recorded Japanese encephalitis virus outbreak in 2021 and 2022 with 45 human cases and 7 deaths and over 80 piggeries were also being affected.
Wild water birds are natural reservoirs for the virus. Native Australian ibises among other birds were implicated in the recent outbreak. Because ibises are common in urban centres, they could play a role in spreading Japanese encephalitis and other important pathogens.
Anjana Karawita and his colleagues at CSIRO’s Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness in Geelong are using genomics to investigate the role of bin chickens in spreading Japanese encephalitis virus to other animals and humans.
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