Can Acanthamoeba Harbor Monkeypox Virus?

Ruqaiyyah Siddiqui, Jibran Sualeh Muhammad, Ahmad M. Alharbi, Hasan Alfahemi, Naveed Ahmed Khan

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Acanthamoeba is well known to host a variety of microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria, protozoa, and yeast. Given the recent number of cases of monkeypox infection, we speculate that amoebae may be aiding viral transmission to the susceptible hosts. Although there is no confirmatory evidence to suggest that Acanthamoeba is a host to monkeypox (a double-stranded DNA virus), the recent discovery of mimivirus (another double-stranded DNA virus) from Acanthamoeba, suggests that amoebae may shelter monkeypox virus. Furthermore, given the possible spread of monkeypox virus from animals to humans during an earlier outbreak, which came about after patients came in contact with prairie dogs, it is likely that animals may also act as mixing vessel between ubiquitously distributed Acanthamoeba and monkeypox virus, in addition to the environmental habitat that acts as an interface in complex interactions between diverse microorganisms and the host.
Original languageEnglish
Article number855
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 27 Mar 2023


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