Eating monkeys, apes could cause ‘next HIV’May 26th, 2012 - 9:34 pm ICT by IANS
London, May 26 (IANS) Scientists in Cameroon have warned that eating monkeys and apes could cause the next HIV, it was reported here Saturday.
They are already tracking a HIV-like virus called simian foamy virus, and fear more viruses could spread and lead to a global health crisis, Daily Mail reported.
Eighty percent of the meat eaten in Cameroon is killed in the wild and is known as “bushmeat”, with gorilla, chimpanzee or monkey favourites.
According to one estimate, up to 3,000 gorillas are slaughtered in southern Cameroon every year.
Elsewhere, the Washington-based Bush Meat Crisis Task Force estimates that up to five million tonnes of wild animals are being “harvested” in the Congo Basin every year - the equivalent of 10 million cattle.
A study earlier this year by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), identified evidence of viruses, including simian foamy virus, in illegally imported wildlife products confiscated at several US international airports.
Babila Tafon, head vet at the primate sanctuary Ape Action Africa (AAA), in Mefou, Cameroon, has spotted the virus in animals brought to his sanctuary. The AAA cares for 22 gorillas and more than one hundred chimps which are orphans of the bush meat trade.
- Monkey version of HIV older than previously believed - May 22, 2010
- Long history of SIV indicates HIV won't quickly become benign in humans - May 22, 2010
- Scientists say that the precursor to the HIV was in monkeys for millennia - Sep 17, 2010
- Monkey jab may open way for HIV vaccine - May 12, 2011
- Wild chimps learning how to outwit human hunters - Sep 04, 2010
- Scale of gorilla poaching in Congo exposed - Sep 17, 2009
- Some gorillas may eat monkeys - Mar 06, 2010
- Malaria came from gorillas thousands of years ago - Sep 24, 2010
- HIV's ancestor much older than previously thought - Sep 17, 2010
- Just like humans, chimps and gorillas age gracefully - Mar 11, 2011
- To catch monkeys, Himachal dangles Rs.500 bait - Nov 03, 2011
- Charles Taylor 2012 Prize won by 'The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary' - Mar 07, 2012
- Primates better adapted to environmental changes - Dec 03, 2010
- Human malarial parasite came from gorillas, not chimps - Sep 23, 2010
- Himachal farmers load guns for 'Operation Monkey' - Dec 10, 2010
Tags: action africa, bush meat trade, bushmeat, cdc, chimpanzee, chimps, congo basin, daily mail, disease control and prevention, foamy virus, global health, gorillas, head vet, health crisis, international airports, monkeys and apes, primate sanctuary, southern cameroon, wild animals, wildlife products