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Creepy SARS-ish Virus Might Be Originating in Bats

Illustration for article titled Creepy SARS-ish Virus Might Be Originating in Bats

A mysterious SARS-like virus has killed one person in Saudi Arabia and left another in critical condition. Though the virus doesn't seem to be as infectious as SARS, the WHO is monitoring the situation:

The agency said it's too early to tell how big a threat the new virus will be since it is unknown how exactly it spreads and whether it will evolve into a more dangerous form.

The virus is a type of coronavirus, a family of viruses that cause the common cold as well as SARS. Global health officials suspect two victims from the Middle East may have caught it from animals.

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Due to the unpredictability and infrequency of human infections so far, researchers suspect that the animal in question is something not normally in close quarters with humans, such as a bat, rather than a domestic animal such as a camel or goat. But mostly they're just like, "Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm?"

Saudi officials have already warned that next month's annual Muslim Hajj pilgrimage, which brings millions to Saudi Arabia from all around the world, could allow the virus to spread. As a precautionary measure, they are advising pilgrims to keep their hands clean and wear masks in crowded places.

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Also don't trust bats. NEVER TRUST A BAT.

Middle East SARS-like mystery virus may come from animals [CBS]

Photo credit: smithore / Stockfresh.

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DISCUSSION

gills
wheretobegin

Aw shit, Contagion is coming true!