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Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:41 PM

Vampire Bat Bites Help Shield Peruvians from Rabies

Rabies has been thought of as virtually 100-percent fatal unless treated immediately, but new research shows that a small number of isolated Peruvians have natural immunity from the animal-transmitted disease.

Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that one in 15 people living in the remote Amazonian region in Peru were protected without medical intervention against the virus that kills more than 55,000 people globally every year.

Their trick: Vampire bats exposed the remote Peruvians to enough of the rabies virus to confer resistance, but not enough to kill them.

"Our results open the door to the idea that there may be some type of natural resistance or enhanced immune response in certain communities regularly exposed to the disease," Amy Gilbert, a researcher with the CDC's National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases and co-lead study author, said in a statement. "This means there may be ways to develop effective treatments that can save lives in areas where rabies remains a persistent cause of death."

http://news.yahoo.com/vampire-bat-bites-help-shield-peruvians-rabies-114430410.html

8 replies, 1235 views

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Vampire Bat Bites Help Shield Peruvians from Rabies (Original post)
Baitball Blogger Aug 2012 OP
struggle4progress Aug 2012 #1
darkangel218 Aug 2012 #2
belcffub Aug 2012 #3
Baitball Blogger Aug 2012 #4
belcffub Aug 2012 #6
DCKit Aug 2012 #5
ljm2002 Aug 2012 #7
HopeHoops Aug 2012 #8

Response to Baitball Blogger (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:45 PM

1. and they're cute!

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #1)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:51 PM

2. they have pig noses :/

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:10 PM

3. we just had a bat in our house in my daughters room

and because we were sleeping and I caught it and let it go everyone in the house gets to get the shots... we start them when my daughter gets back from camp...

The shots cost around $5k per person... so that bat got a $20k lease on life...


If I had known this could have been prevented with vampire bats...

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Response to belcffub (Reply #3)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:13 PM

4. I know, right?

Bite the head off the bat that bit you...or something like that.

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Reply #4)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:12 PM

6. not sure if it works like that...

but after they give me the 10 shots they said I would need I might give it a try...

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:05 PM

5. Those people I know who work at international organizations would simply accept this as fact...

 

that all Peruvians are rabid.

I think you'd have to know the folks I do to consider this funny.

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:24 PM

7. Apparently rabies is sometimes survivable...

...although not often:

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/california-girl-us-survive-rabies/story?id=13830407#.UBrgdFJ0iuk

This is about a 6-year-old California girl who survived untreated rabies. The medical put her on antiviral medication and put her in a medically-induced coma. Apparently she is one of only 3 known cases who survived in a situation like this.

What a scary disease, I hope this information about bats possibly conferring immunity helps us come up with a way to eradicate it or cure it.

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Response to Baitball Blogger (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 06:39 PM

8. Yet another reason to love bats. Swallows, dragon flies, and bats are all welcome here.

 

They eat more nasties than you can possibly imagine. They're also fun to watch.

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