Ivan V. Kuzmin and Noel Tordo
from: Rhabdoviruses: Molecular Taxonomy, Evolution, Genomics, Ecology, Host-Vector Interactions, Cytopathology and Control (Edited by: Ralf G. Dietzgen and Ivan V. Kuzmin). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2012)
Viruses from the genus Lyssavirus cause rabies: an acute progressive encephalomyelitis, with the highest fatality rate among conventional infectious diseases. Despite millennia of recognition and centuries of control attempts, rabies still kills over 55,000 people in the world every year. In contrast to the majority of rhabdoviruses, lyssaviruses do not require an arthropod vector, but rather are transmitted between mammals via bites. Although the domestic dog is still the major rabies reservoir that causes over 90% of human cases, lyssaviruses of different species broadly circulate in wildlife. All these facets clearly indicate that rabies is a significant problem for public health, veterinary and wildlife services, from the standpoint of the 'one health' concept. The present chapter describes recent advances in lyssavirus taxonomy, phylogeny, pathobiology, and epidemiology. Other important topics, such as advances, challenges and perspectives of rabies prevention and control, are covered in chapters 13 and 14 of this book read more ...