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Elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus

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  • Published
    8th Oct, 2019


  • Elephant endotheliotropic herpesviruses (EEHV) or Elephantid betaherpesvirus 1 (ElHV-1) is a type of herpesvirus, which can cause a highly fatal hemorrhagic disease when transmitted to young Asian elephants.
  • The four deaths in Nandan Kanan Zoo are the first reported cases of EEHV-related deaths in an Indian zoo
  • Most elephants carry just as most humans carry a cold virus. When EEHV is triggered, the elephant dies of massive internal bleeding and symptoms which are hardly visible
  • Some elephants show symptoms such as reduced appetite, nasal discharge and swollen glands
  • There is no true cure for herpesviruses in animals or in humans, because herpes viruses go latent.
  • EEHV is lethal for young elephants between the ages of one and 12. If a young elephant dies before reproducing, it affects the population of the species as a whole in the concerned geography.
  • In India, the CZA will set up a national committee of scientists from Guwahati, Kerala, IVRI and Nandan Kanan to develop protocols for the country lest an EEHV outbreak occurs elsewhere in the future.
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