Three men who worked as squirrel breeders in Germany are believed to have been killed by a virus that has previously only affected squirrels.
According to Live Science:
Three people in Germany who worked as squirrel breeders and who all died from brain inflammation may have contracted a new strain of virus from their squirrels, according to a new report of the cases.
The new virus strain belongs to a group of viruses called bornaviruses, which typically infect animals such as horses, sheep and birds. Researchers have debated whether this group of viruses can cause disease in people.
The new findings suggest such viruses do cause disease, and moreover, raise the question of whether this virus “represents an emerging threat” to people in the area, according to a recent statement from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.