highly infectious strain of mutant rabies is spreading among animals across the state of Arizona, says National Geographic News. The new strain probably first appeared in bats before it spread to skunks and foxes in the area. The frightening thing about this mutant virus is the way it is communicated, say officials at the Centers for Disease Control. Unlike most rabies strains, it’s not carried from animal to animal through bites. Instead, it is spread through close social contact, like the common cold or flu. At this point, the transfer of mutant rabies from animals to humans “should be a major concern,” says molecular virologist Hinh Ly. Fearful that infection could get to humans by contact between pets and such wide-ranging wild animals as the fox, officials in the city of Flagstaff have issued a 90-day pet quarantine.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why is American internet so slow?
- Don't worry: World War III will almost certainly never happen
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- Russia's Ukraine invasion is a moral crisis
- 22 TV shows to watch in 2014
- 4 life hacks from ancient philosophers that will make you happier
- The Daily Show explains Hamid Karzai's 'Afghan Hustle'
- The end of academic freedom?
- This energy source could solve all of our problems — so why is no one talking about it?
Subscribe to the Week