New Strain Of Rabies Found In New Mexico

By Stina Sieg
Published: Wednesday, May 20, 2015 - 8:22am
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A new strain of rabies has been discovered in southern New Mexico. It’s the first new strain to be found in the United States in several years.

And that’s got the attention of scientists, even though this new strain is not more dangerous than previously known ones. This all started when a 78-year-old woman was bitten by a rabid fox in April in Lincoln County.

Genetic testing has now confirmed the strain was new to scientists. So, New Mexico’s health department is working with state wildlife officers to collect foxes found dead along roadways in the rural county. They’re also examining freshly dead bats, as they try to determine where the strain is coming from.

New Mexico has been tracking rabies in foxes since 2007, when a separate strain found in Arizona gray foxes crossed into the state.

 

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