The 53-year-old vet, who worked for an institution that did research on nonhuman primates, showed early-onset symptoms of nausea and vomiting, a month after he dissected two dead monkeys in early March, the state-run Global Times reported. on Saturday, citing the English Platform of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
The vet had sought treatment at various hospitals and eventually died on May 27, according to the report.
His close contacts are safe for now, he added.
He said there were no previously fatal or even clinically obvious BV infections in China, so the vet’s case marks the first case of human BV infection identified in China.
The researchers had collected the cerebrospinal fluid from the vet in April and identified it as positive for BV, but samples from their close contacts suggested negative results for the virus.
The virus, initially isolated in 1932, is an enzootic alphaherpesvirus in macaques of the genus Macaca. It can be transmitted through direct contact and the exchange of bodily secretions and has a mortality rate of 70% to 80%.
The magazine suggested that BV in monkeys could pose a potential threat to occupational workers.
It is necessary to eliminate BV during the development of rhesus colonies free of specific pathogens and to strengthen surveillance in laboratory macaques and occupational workers in China, according to the report.