A piece of genetic detective work by an international team has uncovered a deadly virus not seen before that likely caused a small isolated outbreak of acute hemorrhagic fever in central Africa in the summer of 2009.
The outbreak, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), killed two people and left one person seriously ill. The researchers have given the deadly pathogen the name Bas-Congo virus (BASV), after the province where the three people lived.
They report their work in the 27 September issue of the online open access journalPLoS Pathogens.
The researchers were in an international consortium comprising the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), the US company Microbiota, and other institutions and organizations in America and Africa.