Study Finds Common Cold Virus Deadly to Chimpanzees
Deadly outbreak strikes chimpanzees in Uganda’s Kibale National Park.
by Kaitlyn Bock
In a groundbreaking study, researchers discovered the first evidence of a common human cold virus infecting another species. The virus, known as “Human Rhinovirus C,” caused a deadly outbreak among wild chimpanzees in Kibale National Park, Uganda. The study suggests that all chimpanzees are extremely vulnerable to contracting the lethal virus.
PASA staff spoke with Dr. Tony Goldberg from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, one of the researchers who worked on the study, to discuss his findings and the implications this research could have on chimpanzee conservation.
Should people be worried about diseases spreading from primates to humans?
Now we know that a human cold virus is deadly to chimpanzees, what precautions should people take when they’re around chimpanzees?
Kibale National Park is home to 13 species of primates, including more than 1,400 chimpanzees. Recent research suggests they are highly susceptible to the common cold.