Just when we thought that we might be getting Coronavirus under control after the vaccine started being administered, we learn about a new mutation of the virus and a load of the country gets shunted into Tier 4 and now another scientist is warning us about ‘Disease X’ – another new virus on the horizon that will be even deadlier than COVID-19. Great.
Professor Jean-Jacques Muyembe Tamfum has been working on the frontlines of pathogen identification since 1976 and was involved the first discovery of ebola, so you can kinda respect what he has to say on the matter and listen up to it. He currently runs the Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale (INRB) in the Democratic Republic Of Congo and believes that zoonotic illnesses – where viruses jump from animals to humans, as in the case of Coronavirus – are on the rise:
We are now in a world where new pathogens will come out.
And that’s what constitutes a threat for humanity.
I think that future pandemics will be even more devastating, more apocalyptic than Covid.
If you go in the forest… you will change the ecology, and insects and rats will leave this place and come to the villages… so this is the transmission of the virus, of the new pathogens.
One of Congo’s main exports is bushmeat from crocodiles, turtles, chimpanzees and other exotic animals.
These are slaughtered and sold all around the world through our countries wet markets and this is of grave concern to myself and other experts.
Doctors in Kinshasa are currently treating a woman showing signs of hemorrhagic fever.
We’re testing her for Ebola but are worried she might be patient zero for ‘Disease X’ – it has the potential to spread as quickly as Coronavirus but with the 50-90% mortality rate of Ebola.
We’ve all got to be frightened.
Ebola was unknown. Covid was unknown. We have to be afraid of new diseases.
Geez that’s depressing isn’t it, although it’s not really clear what he’s basing the idea of ‘Disease X’ on from what he’s saying there. Yeah, there’s a woman who has hemorrhagic fever but the rest of it just seems to come from the fact that he thinks that this so called ‘Disease X’ is coming and is just around the corner – there doesn’t seem to be any actual evidence of it yet.
Obviously the ‘yet’ in that sentence is key though. Merry Christmas!
For more of the same, check out this infectious disease expert on Joe Rogan for a hot take on Coronavirus. Who do you believe?