Information dynamics
Home · NEWS · Industry News ·
WHO announces renaming of monkeypox virus branch
The World Health Organization announced on the 12th that the monkeypox virus branch will be renamed, and the new name will be composed of Roman numerals and lowercase English letters.

A global panel of experts convened by the WHO has agreed on a new name for the monkeypox virus branch, the WHO said in a statement. The new names will use Roman numerals to denote virus clades and lowercase letters to denote subclades. For example, experts now refer to the former Congo Basin branch as Branch I and the former West African branch as Branch II. Branch II in turn includes two subclades, IIa and IIb, of which IIb is a group of virus variants that will be primarily circulating in the 2022 monkeypox outbreak.

The WHO said work on naming the monkeypox disease and virus would also continue, while new names for the branches took effect immediately. The current convention in naming newly identified viruses and their branches, related diseases, is to avoid harm to any cultural, social, national, regional, professional or ethnic group, etc. by these names, and to minimize the impact of such naming on trade, Negative effects of travel, tourism or animal welfare.

The monkeypox virus was named when it was first discovered in 1958, before the current practice of naming diseases and viruses was adopted.

On July 23, WHO declared that the monkeypox outbreak in many countries constituted a "public health emergency of international concern". This is the highest level of public health alert that WHO can currently issue.

According to the monkeypox epidemic report released by WHO on August 10, 89 countries and regions have reported 27,814 laboratory-confirmed cases and 11 deaths to WHO, most of which are from Europe and the Americas.