Monkeys: The United States is offering vaccines to some people infected with the virus. Here’s what you need to know


World health leaders are investigating the unusual spread of monkey disease in more than a dozen countries, and discussions in the United States have focused on vaccination against the disease – and some people infected with the virus may be offered a vaccine.

Vaccine against smallpox is now available to some health care providers who treat sick people.

“Although I was registered for the first time at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, I am pleased to report that our government colleagues were able to receive vaccines at that hospital. “Yesterday, they started offering vaccines to sick medical workers,” said Dr. Raj Panjabi, who led the White House’s fight against smallpox, told CNN’s Laura Coates on Monday night.

“The first part is to identify the infected and isolate them and provide them with the care they need,” Punjabi said. “The second part is vaccinating people with the disease. If we do this again and again – and this is our relationship with the White House and the government – then we will have a better chance of stopping this epidemic.

A senior Biden administration official said Tuesday that small groups of people with smallpox may be offered the vaccine, but it’s not a mass vaccination attempt.

In the United States, the Jynneos vaccine, given in two doses at four-week intervals, is approved for the prevention of smallpox and monkey smallpox in adults.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website says, “Because the smallpox virus is closely related to the virus that causes smallpox, the smallpox vaccine can protect people from monkey disease.” “Smallpox and smallpox vaccines are effective in protecting people against smallpox when they are made before they become infected with smallpox. Experts also believe that vaccinating monkeys against smallpox can help prevent or alleviate the disease.

Researchers have long known that smallpox vaccines can be effective in preventing smallpox in monkeys. The smallpox variola virus and the monkey smallpox virus belong to the same family.

“Viruses come from the same family of viruses, and what we’ve seen in pre-aphids epidemics is that vaccination contacts stop the infection or reduce the infection in people with monkeypox,” the doctor said. Amesh Adalja is a senior fellow at the Johns Hopkins Health Center at Bloomberg School of Public Health.

But don’t expect vaccines to become widespread.

“I think we need to keep in touch with patients who are vaccinated. This is not something that can be lined up and vaccinated, ”Adalja said of the current epidemic. “It’s very important to stop that.”

A senior administration official said Tuesday that there is enough vaccine to cover the current level in the United States.

“Currently, we have more than 1,000 doses [Jynneos] is available, and we expect that level to rise rapidly in the coming weeks because the company will give us more doses, ”said Jennifer, deputy director of the CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases at the Center. McQueiston said.

The CDC estimates that the vaccine is at least 85% effective in preventing monkey smallpox, based on data from Africa.

Another vaccine called ACAM2000 is licensed in the United States to prevent smallpox. The vaccine can be used to prevent smallpox, but it is not licensed.

The United States has more than 100 million doses of ACAM2000, McQuiston said.

“ACAM2000 is an older generation vaccine against smallpox and it has some serious side effects,” he said. “So the decision to use it more widely should have a serious discussion behind it.”

ACAM2000 is a vaccine against this live virus – and once shot, a sore appears there. Because the virus grows in the affected area, the CDC says it can spread to other parts of the body and even to other people, so people taking ACAM2000 should “take precautions” to prevent it from spreading.

For comparison, the Jynneos vaccine is given as a non-replicating live virus. According to the CDC, this means that there is no apparent “acceptance” and as a result there is no risk of the virus spreading. Some common vaccine side effects include pain, muscle aches, headaches, or fatigue at the injection site.

Most people are not vaccinated against smallpox. It is based on a direct impact.

The CDC’s Advisory Committee and Immunization Practitioners voted last year to recommend vaccination to selected groups at risk of ape-related smallpox and other related viruses due to their profession. This involves treating laboratory staff and health workers, such as those who are infected.

The World Health Organization (WHO) plans to make recommendations on who should be given priority for vaccination against smallpox to reduce the risk of contracting monkey disease.

“We will make recommendations on who should be given priority for this,” said Maria Van Kerhove, the WHO’s technical leader for emerging diseases and zoonoses and Covid-19. social media question and answer Monday.

“Not everyone needs it. It’s a virus that is spreading among people who are in close contact with patients, “said Van Kerhove. “We really need to discuss the evidence-based application, accessibility and equity of these measures.”

Andy Seale, Strategy Adviser at the WHO’s Global HIV, Hepatitis and STI Programs Department, added that vaccinations should be considered for countries in West and Central Africa where monkeys are endemic.

“Communities have told us, ‘If we get it right, if we get it, if we get the chance of an epidemic, we have to do the same for endemic countries,'” Seal said.

According to the CDC, vaccination after exposure to the smallpox virus in monkeys can still offer some protection.

“It’s the norm. Not everyone is vaccinated in advance. We use vaccination as a post-infection prophylaxis, ”said Adalja.

“Because there is a long incubation period for smallpox – an average of 12 days or more for smallpox – an infected person can be vaccinated to stop the infection,” he said. “Or if you get an infection, it really reduces the severity of the infection if it comes in too late or too late for the incubation period.”

However, the earlier an infected person receives the vaccine, the better. The CDC recommends that the vaccine be given within 4 days to prevent the disease. If it is given 4 to 14 days after the illness, the vaccine may reduce symptoms but not prevent the disease itself.

In general, people who have contracted the monkey smallpox virus and have not been vaccinated in the last three years should consider getting vaccinated, according to the CDC.

Adalja said there must be some “remnants” of protection from monkeys for adults who were vaccinated against smallpox as children.

“The smallpox vaccination program ended in the United States in the 1970s. Of course, if someone is in the U.S. military and they were vaccinated last year, I’m sure they are fully protected, ”Adalja said. “However, people who were vaccinated in childhood may have some residual immunity in an era when smallpox vaccination was common in childhood.”

A senior Biden administration official said Tuesday that in theory, some protection against smallpox vaccination has been offered, but there is no good evidence of how much protection there is, and that protection could deteriorate over time.

The official said that nothing has changed in the biology of the monkey smallpox virus and that the chances of infecting the general public are still low.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has not confirmed that the monkey smallpox virus has changed or mutated in the epidemic. Therefore, there is no evidence that licensed vaccines do not currently work against the virus in circulation.

“It’s a very persistent virus. So we don’t have any evidence that the virus itself has a mutation, “said Rosamund Lewis, chief of staff at the WHO’s emergency response program.

“We’re starting to gather that information,” Lewis added. “We are inviting groups of virologists and other experts to discuss this issue based on the genomic sequence of some of the cases being identified.”

This was a “key question” that was important to answer, the doctor said. Daniel Rhodes, co-chair of the Microbiology Committee of the American College of Pathologists.

“Has anything changed in biology, or is this an unprecedented phenomenon, or have we not recognized it before? I think the key question is when the geography of these endemic diseases will change, ”said Rhodes, a pathologist at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.

“When we see a new infection or a new way of infection, I always wonder, is this something we didn’t know before? Or is this a real biological change due to a mutation in the virus? “I don’t know,” Rhodes said.

“I think once they identify the virus that caused the current epidemic, they can compare it to certain sequences, and then we hope to have an idea of ​​whether it’s the same old monkey or not. There is something that looks different. ”


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