Ebola, that is.
Back when the apes at the Reston apehouse were keeling over like blood-filled water balloons, keepers and researchers at first couldn’t understand how it was that apes in a completely different part of the complex were being infected. The answer, even as Ebola was supposed to only spread through direct contact with fluids, it was being transmitted through the complex’ ventilation system. And this was not a droplet spread but a true airborne pathogen.
Now, since Ebola was extremely dangerous, the USAMRIID labs in Maryland were involved, and there was some tension before it became clear that this airborne Ebola wasn’t dangerous to people.
But what no one cottoned on to – in fact, it wasn’t discovered before 2012 – was that Ebola Reston readily infected pigs and made the pig population its home, sitting there in comfort and mutating, mutating, mutating…
Just a comfort thought before Christmas, with it’s manic shopping mobs :).
More comfort: The group of filoviruses seems to be expanding more rapidly than expected, and of course each new variant has new opportunities.