Home / News / World /  What is ‘Disease X’? Why top experts are warning of another COVID-like pandemic?

‘Disease X’ is causing much a concern in Britain and accordingly, health experts have urged the government to remain prepared for a new pathogen owing to the fact that the country has seen several infections in the recent past. The warning comes at a time when the poliovirus has been detected in sewage samples in London, however, no cases of polio that causes paralysis in children have been reported so far. 

Currently, the country is battling the Monkeypox menace with 910 confirmed cases till June 23. Though the World Health Organisation is yet to call it a public health emergency, more than 4000 cases have been reported from over 40 countries till now. Moreover, a case of Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever was reported in March. Lassa fever and bird flu infections are also seen rising for the last few years. Apart from that, COVID has created havoc for the past 2 years.

What is disease X?

But not only in Europe, but the threat also lies elsewhere. Medical experts have warned, as reported by The Mirror, “We're living through a new pandemic era, and Disease X’ could be just round the corner." Disease X refers to unknown pathogens with pandemic potential that emerge in the future.

Why experts are warning of another pandemic? 

Several studies have pointed out, that there are high chances that the cause of the next pandemic could be climate change. The rising temperature will lead to the forcible relocation of wild animals to more populated areas. Hence, this will drastically increase the risk of a viral jump to humans leading to the next pandemic. Pointing out the same, Professor Jean-Jacques Muyembe Tamfum, who helped discover the Ebola virus in 1976, said while speaking to CNN, “We are now in a world where new pathogens will come out. And that’s what constitutes a threat for humanity."  When asked if any new disease could be more apocalyptic than Covid-19, he said: “Yes, yes, I think so."

The World Health Organization (WHO) has also warned, that “Disease X", where “X" stands for unexpected, is hypothetical for now, an outbreak that scientists and public health experts fear could lead to serious disease around the world if and when it occurs.


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