While India is fighting against Covid-19, the scientists at the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) have discovered another virus named ‘Cat Que Virus’ (CQV).
Reportedly, the virus has the potential to cause disease in India. CQV has been largely reported in China and Vietnam which falls under the category of Arthropod-borne viruses. It is usually found in pigs and Culex mosquitoes.
According to the scientists at the National Institute of Virology (NIV), ICMR, Pune, they have discovered antibodies for the virus in two out of the 883 human serum samples that were tested across states.
The results indicated that these two people were infected with CQV. The two samples from Karnataka were found to be positive for the presence of anti-CQV IgG antibodies in 2014 and 2017.
As per the report, the ICMR scientists have said that the availability of vector, primary mammalian host (swine), and the confirmation of CQV signifies the potential of this orthobunyavirus as a public health pathogen in the country.
ICMR also stated that the replication capability of CQV in mosquitoes indicated a possible disease-causing potential of CQV in India.
Therefore, scientists have developed molecular and serological tests for CQV.
As per the ICMR study, the Indian mosquito breeds- Ae. aegypti, Cx. quinquefasciatus and Cx. tritaeniorhynchus are vulnerable to CQV.
CQV has been reported from mosquitoes, its natural host. It is pertinent to mention that there has been no confirmation on the role of mosquitoes transmitting CQV disease to human beings. The domestic pigs are the primary mammalian host while the antibodies against the virus have been found in swine reared locally in China.