Juvenile Camel’s key source of MERS: Study

As per recently published study, camels aged less than four years might be a major source of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). The study was published in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases

The research study was undertaken by international team who had looked for evidence of current or past infection in more than 800 dromedary camels (also called Arabian camels).

In this study researchers have found out that

  • More than 90 per cent of camels were infected by MERS virus the age of two and virus shedding was more common in calves than in adults.
  • Changes in animal husbandry may reduce the occurrence of human MERs infections.
  • Dromedary camels that are living in the Middle East have antibodies that recognised MERS virus protein which is a strong sign of past infection.
  • However the spread of MERS virus in humans is still unknown but it might spread due direct contact with body fluids from infected camels.
  • Alternatively, it might have spread by drinking unpasteurised camel milk and possibly by transfer through the contaminated virus present in the saliva of an infected calf to their mothers.

Facts about Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

  • MERS belongs to the family of coronaviruses which includes large family of viruses such as common cold and Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS).
  • It was discovered in 2012 and was mostly centred in Saudi Arabia. But cases might have occurred before.
  • Source: MERS is a betacoronavirus derived from bats. Camels have shown to have antibodies to MERS, but the exact source of infection in camels has not been identified.
  • Transmission: It can be transmitted from infected person to others after close contact via a respiratory route. It spread’s in droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
  • Symptoms: fever, breathing problems, pneumonia and kidney failure.
  • Treatment: Till date there is no vaccine available to prevent it. However intensive medical care can help patient to breath.

Renewable energy targets quadruple globally in 10 years: IRENA

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has announced that in past one decade renewable energy targets have quadruple globally.

It was mentioned IRENA Renewable Energy Target Setting report which was released by IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin on the side lines of IRENA’s 9th Council meeting in Dubai.

As per report, 164 countries have adopted at least one type of renewable energy target compared to 43 countries in 2005. All nations are adopting renewable energy targets to meet multiple objectives including energy security, environmental sustainability and socio-economic benefits.

Developing and emerging economies are leading nations to adopt of renewable energy targets, accounting for 131 out of the 164 countries. The majority of 150 countries have focused committed renewable energy targets on the electricity sector

The numbers of countries setting renewable targets for the heating and cooling sector have increased to 47 from 2 countries in 2005. Similarly, renewable transport targets have also has doubled to 59 countries from 27 countries in 2005.

About International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)

  • IRENA is an intergovernmental organization to promote adoption and sustainable use of renewable energy.
  • It is a global hub for renewable energy cooperation and information exchange within its member nations.
  • Founded: in 2009 and its statute entered into force on 8 July 2010.
  • Headquarters: Abu Dhabi.
  • Two governing structure: IRENA Assembly which takes decisions at macro level and gives policy guidance. IRENA Council is main governing body and is responsible for implementing various decisions of assembly.
  • Members: In total it has 140 Members. India is one of the 33 Permanent and founder members of IRENA.