Issyk-Kul virus isolated in Brescia: it is the first time in Italy

Great discovery atExperimental Zooprophylactic Institute of Lombardy and Emilia Romagna of Brescia: for the first time in Italy the Issyk-Kul virus (ISKV) from a bat. At present little is known about this virus even though it is described as the cause of possible outbreaks of disease in humans characterized by fever, headache, myalgia, and nausea with recovery times of up to a few weeks. At the moment there isn’t no alarm in progress but the study is aimed at prevention against possible infectious diseases.

The bat from which ISKV is born is, in fact, a very common species in urban centers that uses buildings as shelter sites suggesting possible implications for public health but to date there is no real danger.

The isolation is supported by the Lombardy Region which since 2012 has a wildlife health monitoring plan. The aim is to monitor not only a specific group of pathologies and related species in which their possible presence is known, but more generally also any spillover phenomena in wildlife.

To date the IZSLER recorded only one positivity to the ISKV and further investigations are underway to define the spread, distribution and ecology of this virus. For now ISKV has been found in neighboring Central Asian countries (Tajikistan and Kazakhstan) in several species of bats and ticks and transmission to humans is thought to occur through tick bites and exposure to bat feces and urine.

«It is a result of absolute scientific importance – he comments the regional councilor for welfare, Letizia Moratti – which testifies to the goodness of the regional monitoring plan. Without creating alarmism and without “demonizing” the animals, the dynamics of recent years impose a special focus on wildlife to highlight early possible risk factors for health and the possible spread of the virus »concludes Moratti.