The Bhanja virus is a tick-borne virus first discovered in a tick (Haemaphysalis intermedia) taken from a paralyzed goat in Bhanjanagar, India in 1954. Bhanja virus in humans was first documented in 1974 when Charles Calisher was working with the virus in a lab and contracted it himself. His experience with the virus was mild and included symptoms of mild aching in muscles and joints, moderate headache, slight photophobia. The Bhanja virus is a member of the Bhanja virus serocomplex and is a member of the Bunyavirales order.
The Bhanja virus is transmitted from ticks and has furthermore mainly been isolated from the ticks of the genera Dermacentor and Haemaphysalis, although it can be transmitted by any Ixodidae ticks. Bhanja virus is not known to be transmitted between humans.
The Bhanja virus has been found in vertebrate animals, most commonly in sheep, goats, cattle, African hedgehogs (Atelerix albiventris), and African ground squirrels (Xerus erythropus). It has been known to be pathogenic in small animals and children and can also affect adult humans.
Treatment is dependent upon the severity of the symptoms. Due to viral infections not responding to antibiotics, treatment is mainly to reduce the signs and symptoms; for which acetaminophen is suggested.
Prevention is that of any tick bite, avoid excessive foliage and bushy areas. If you do come in contact with these areas, wear long sleeves and pants to cover as much skin as possible. Be specifically careful in areas used to graze or feed goats or sheep.
The Bhanja virus has been isolated in Europe, including: Italy, Croatia, Bulgaria, Romania, Eastern Slovakia, in Asia, including: India, Kirghizia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Armenia and in Africa, including Senegal, Guinea, Nigeria, Cameroon, Central Africa, Kenya, Somali. There is a possibility that migratory birds play a role in spreading the virus by carrying infected ticks on them to new regions.
- Zdenek Hubálek, “Biogeography of Tick-Borne Bhanja Virus (Bunyaviridae) in Europe,” Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Infectious Diseases, vol. 2009, Article ID 372691, 11 pages, 2009. doi:10.1155/2009/372691
- Goodpasture, Hewitt C., and Charles H. Calisher. "Human Infection with Bhanja Virus." Human Infection with Bhanja Virus. The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, n.d. Web. 24 July 2014.
- Plyusnin, A.; Beaty, B.J.; Elliott, R.M.; Goldbach, R.; Kormelink, R.; Lundkvist, Å.; Schmaljohn, C.S.; Tesh, R.B. "ICTV 9th Report (2011) Negative Sense RNA Viruses (2011) Negative Sense RNA Viruses Bunyaviridae" (html). International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV). Retrieved 20 December 2019.
List of other related viruses which may be members of the family Bunyaviridae but have not been approved as species
- Mehlhorn, Heinz, ed. Arthropods as Vectors of Emerging Disease. N.p.: Springer, n.d. (Viral Disease Link). Heinrich Hein University. Web. 24 July 2014.
- "N. Bhanja Virus." Regional Disease Vector Ecology Profile: Central Europe. Washington, D.C.: DIANE, 2001. N. pag. Web.
- "Bhanja Virus Infection in Hedgehogs and Bears (Viral Disease Link)". wildpro.twycrosszoo.org. Retrieved 2014-07-25.