Barmah Forest virus

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Barmah Forest Virus
Structure of barmah forest virus by cryo-electron microscopy. EMD-1886[1]
Virus classification
Group: Group IV ((+)ssRNA)
Order: Unassigned
Family: Togaviridae
Genus: Alphavirus
Species: Barmah Forest Virus

Barmah Forest virus is a virus currently found only in Australia. Although there is no specific treatment for infection with the Barmah Forest virus, the disease is non-fatal and most infected people recover.[1][2] The virus was discovered in 1974 in mosquitos in the Barmah Forest in northern Victoria.[3]


The virus can only be transmitted to humans by bites from infected mosquitos. Direct contact with an infected person or animal does not cause infection.[4] The virus is hosted mainly by marsupials, especially possums, kangaroos and wallabies.[2]


Symptoms include fever, malaise, rash, joint pain, and muscle tenderness. Fever and malaise generally disappear within a few days to a week, but other symptoms such as joint pain may continue for six months or longer.[1][5]

The Barmah forest virus causes similar symptoms as the Ross River virus, though they usually persist longer in persons infected with the latter.[2][4]


  1. ^ a b c Kostyuchenko, V. A.; Jakana, J.; Liu, X.; Haddow, A. D.; Aung, M.; Weaver, S. C.; Chiu, W.; Lok, S. -M. (2011). "The Structure of Barmah Forest Virus as Revealed by Cryo-Electron Microscopy at a 6-Angstrom Resolution Has Detailed Transmembrane Protein Architecture and Interactions". Journal of Virology 85 (18): 9327–9333. doi:10.1128/JVI.05015-11. PMC 3165765. PMID 21752915. 
  2. ^ a b c Barmah Forest Virus Queensland Health. Queensland Government. 11 May 2011. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
  3. ^ Ross River virus and Barmah Forest virus - the facts. Department of Health, Victoria, Australia. 28 July 2009. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
  4. ^ a b Ross River Virus & Barmah Forest Virus in WA. Environmental Health Directorate. Department of Health, Western Australia 2006. Retrieved 16 February 2012.
  5. ^ Barmah Forest virus infection. New South Wales Government: Health. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 16 February 2012.

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