Diseases transmitted from animals to humans are the most dangerous health threats to come

Paris – In the years to come, the most dangerous diseases for human health will be associated with animals. It is transmitted from animals to humans, and particularly by arthropod viruses transmitted by mosquitoes, the French health authority said on Wednesday. Brigitte Odron, head of the Committee on Anticipation of Health Risks (COVARS), confirmed at a press conference, “These risks are there, we don't know when they will come, but they are known to come.”

Covars presented his views to health and research ministers earlier this week on the risks of exceptional health conditions in France over the next five years. After consulting several French and international institutions and experts, it has identified 35 infectious diseases that are harmful to human health, some of which pose a high level of risk.

These diseases include epidemic respiratory infections (animal-borne influenza and novel coronaviruses) and animal-borne diseases such as arboviruses (especially dengue fever and West Nile virus infection).

In addition to acute respiratory infections in winter, this category also includes the possibility of the emergence of an unknown disease linked to an emerging pathogen that is unknown today. In addition to epidemiological and infectious risks, events associated with climate and environmental change may increase the risk of the spread of emerging diseases, most of which are of animal origin.

“One of the consequences of climate warming is the lengthening of the time of year that is favorable for the reproduction of infectious agents,” explained COVARS member, environmental epidemiologist Patrick Giradoux. For example, “tiger mosquitoes can reach high populations throughout the year, which can pose high risks,” he noted.

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And, “It increases our exposure to ozone, an oxidant that increases the risk of respiratory infections.” He stressed that the “collapse of biodiversity” could be another factor that helps “the spread of disease vectors”. Gowers emphasized the need to strengthen the health care system to “avoid its gluttony when a health risk arises.” The committee also called for “monitoring of transmission events between mammals and species” and “animal reservoirs” of viruses.

Many of the most destructive viruses in human history originated in animals and evolved to infect humans. Some species, like mosquitoes, transmit viruses like Zika and West Nile through their bites. Bats, rats, monkeys, and birds also harbored various pathogens that later spread to humans.

Viruses are remarkably adaptable, as fixed mutations enable them to reproduce in new hosts, and humans have made it relatively easy for viruses to jump species over the past century or so. Global development has brought humans and animals closer together, and as humans and animals penetrate each other's environments, the opportunity to share viruses increases.

A recent study suggests that climate change plays a major role as the warming of the planet, areas of high population density and the movement of tropical species create the initial conditions for viral disruption. Scientists are tracking certain coronaviruses that can cause serious illness. The Centers for Research in Emerging Infectious Diseases has teams at eight centers around the world to monitor different coronaviruses.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that commonly cause mild to moderate upper respiratory tract infections in humans. However, a small number of novel coronaviruses (meaning they are new to humans) have caused widespread outbreaks, including severe disease.

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Before Covid-19 became the biggest coronavirus threat, SARS and MERS jumped from animals to humans. SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, is widely believed to have spread from bats to another small mammal before reaching humans in 2002, sickening people in 26 countries.

MERS originated in dromedary camels and evolved into humans in 2012. Compared to other coronaviruses, MERS does not spread easily between humans, so the outbreak has been contained. According to the World Health Organization, cases have been reported at a much lower rate in recent years.

There are many dangerous diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans and many people are not aware of the danger to their lives some animals are capable of transmitting infectious diseases known as zoonotic diseases. The Science Alert website reviewed a list of 10 diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans:

Cat Scratch Disease: Bacterial infection at the site of a cat bite or scratch. This disease causes swollen lymph nodes and high body temperature. People with weakened immune systems, especially young children, can develop serious complications, including the bloodstream, digestive tract, and sometimes even the heart.

Anthrax: Disease spread by domestic animals like cow, sheep, deer. Symptoms vary from person to person, but often manifest as fever, headache, nausea and shortness of breath. To treat the effects of this disease, doctors prescribe antibiotics or antitoxins.

Arf virus: This is the name given to a skin disease caused by poxviruses that infects sheep and goats and is transmitted from them to humans by touch.

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Giardia: Microscopic parasites found on the surface of soil, food and contaminated water. After a person is infected, it lives in his intestines for a long time and is spread in his feces.

Toxoplasmosis: A parasitic infection spread by cats, especially by touching their feces or urine. The disease is dangerous if it affects pregnant women or people with weakened immune systems, and its symptoms include fatigue, muscle aches and fever that last for more than a month.

Fish infection: According to the American Academy of Dermatology, it usually affects people who have direct contact with fish. After infection, painful sores appear on the skin, which take some time to disappear. To avoid disease, doctors advise wearing gloves when handling fish and their tanks.

Parrot fever: This bacteria infects parrots, canaries, and other types of birds, and then spreads to humans by inhaling the infection from feathers and secretions.

Ringworm: A fungus that spreads from dogs and cats, and is one of the most common skin diseases affecting humans. It causes a circular rash that is red and itchy.

Salmonella infection: People who have close contact with reptiles such as lizards, snakes and turtles get it. Symptoms of this disease in healthy adults are usually limited to diarrhea, abdominal cramps, fever and vomiting.

Leptospirosis: It occurs when people are exposed to the urine of dogs, cats and mammals. This disease results in high fever, headache and muscle pain.

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