The next Zika?

All told, we got kind of lucky with the Zika epidemic. When a virus pops up in an area for the first time it’s pretty scary since no one around has pre-existing immunity, as happened in Brazil in 2016. But the threat from that outbreak has now largely passed, at least in terms of being an urgent global health emergency (we still need to keep it on our radars.) But the WHO is now concerned about a new rare virus much scarier than Zika. The Nipah virus has begun to spread in Kerala, India, and has unfortunately killed 17 victims out of 18 confirmed cases. Its source seems to be fruit bats, which some movie aficionados may remember as the source for the eponymous contagion from 2011’s Contagion. Also, there’s no vaccine or cure yet. So that’s fun.