Virus could unlock Hendra secrets

The discovery of a new virus in Australian bat colonies could be the key to unlocking the secrets of the deadly Hendra and Nipah viruses.
The discovery of a new virus in Australian bat colonies could be the key to unlocking the secrets of the deadly Hendra and Nipah viruses. Rob Wright

SCIENTISTS believe the discovery of a new virus in Australian bat colonies could be the key to unlocking the secrets of the deadly Hendra and Nipah viruses.

The "Cedar" virus, discovered in a black bat colony in South East Queensland, has been described by scientists as a "close relative" of Hendra and Nipah, but tests have revealed it is not nearly as lethal.

Gary Crameri from CSIRO said the discovery was a breakthrough for scientists who previously knew very little about two of the deadliest diseases in the world.

He said while it was too early to suggest Cedar could not be transmitted to horses and humans, the research so far indicated animals living near infected bat colonies had not tested positive to disease.

"The significance of discovering a new henipavirus that doesn't cause disease is that it may help us narrow down what it is about the genetic makeup of viruses like Hendra and Nipah that does cause disease and death," Mr Crameri said.

"The more that we can learn about bat-borne viruses, the better chance we have of developing anti-virals and vaccines to help protect human health, Australia's livestock industry and our export trade from the threat of current and emerging animal diseases.

More than 70% of people and animals who become infected with Hendra or Nipah die soon after.

Four Australians have died from Hendra.

The Nipah Virus has claimed 30 lives world wide in the past 12 months.

Topics:  bats flying fox hendra science virus

Dreamworld: This tragedy won't stop us going back

"Dreamworld still has my support 10000% percent."

Appeal for information over assault on woman

Police are appealing for information in relation to an assault on a woman in Woolgoolga in February.

Police release description of man wanted over assault

WHILE many travel long distances to come to the Clarence Val

A cuddle for mum as Lilly Tasker hugs her mum Miriam Tasker with partner Campbell Lynne in the background. Miriam received a donor kidney, and Campbell gave one as part of a donor program, and the family, who form the band Country Heritage are playing at the Clarence Valley Country Music Muster.

Miriam's long journey back to country music

Local Partners

MOVIE REVIEW: Jack Reacher sequel falls flat

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Jack Reacher: Never Go Back.

THE film's title Never Go Back should serve as a warning to fans.

The Bachelor contestants find love with each other

Former Bachelor contestants Megan Marx and Tiffany Scanlon have confirmed their relationship on social media.

MEGAN Marx and Tiffany Scanlon confirm relationship on Instagram.

Liam Payne wants to wed Cheryl Fernandez-Versini

Cheryl Fernandez-Versini and Liam Payne

Liam Payne reportedly wants to marry Cheryl Fernandez-Versini

Bindi Irwin 'honoured' to make MAXIM HOT 100 list

Wildlife Warrior named among Australia's most beautiful women

Len Wiseman files for divorce from Kate Beckinsale

Kate Beckinsale

Len Wiseman has filed for divorce from Kate Beckinsale

Unique riverfront home sells for almost $1M

SOLD: Ray White real estate agent Alan Bruchert has just put a new sticker on Maclean's most expensive house to sell in a decade.

Maclean's highest house sale this decade

Tough times in CBD: Woolies says goodbye Ipswich

Woolworths in the Ipswich Mall.Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

The last day of trading will be January 1

Look at me! Kath and Kim home up for sale

Kath and Kim from the iconic Aussie TV series.

'Crack open the Baileys and grab a box of BBQ Shapes'

Hinterland horse stud passed in for $8.25 million

UNREAL: This Maleny estate is incredible.

12-bedroom hinterland horse stud still available

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June