Recent advances in combating Nipah virus
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Over the past 20 years, Nipah virus (NiV) has emerged as a significant, highly pathogenic bat-borne paramyxovirus causing severe respiratory disease and encephalitis in humans, and human-to-human transmission has been demonstrated in multiple outbreaks. In addition to causing serious illness in humans, NiV is a zoonotic pathogen capable of infecting a wide range of other mammalian species, including pigs and horses. While NiV has caused less than 700 human cases since its discovery in 1998/1999, the involvement of intermediate agricultural hosts can result in significant economic consequences. Owing to the severity of disease, capacity for human-to-human transmission, zoonotic potential, and lack of available approved therapeutic treatment options, NiV has been listed by the World Health Organization in their Blueprint list of priority pathogens as one of the eight most dangerous pathogens to monitor and prepare countermeasures to prevent a pandemic. Here, we discuss progress towards the development of therapeutic measures for the treatment of NiV infection and disease.