CHINESE labs are cashing in on the recent Monkeypox outbreak by selling test kits and a ‘vaccine’ as there are 200 cases worldwide.
The country’s state media claimed that “several” manufacturers have already produced a nucleic acid test kit “that can be quickly mass-produced” and will hit shelves within weeks.
Global Times, a spokesperson for the Chinese government, also claimed that scientists could develop a vaccine against monkeypox by the end of the year.
“Several Chinese test kit makers reached out by the Global Times on Monday said they have developed monkeypox nucleic acid test kits, which could be quickly mass-produced and put on the domestic market once approved by the government,” the paper said.
“Meanwhile, experts pointed out that there are no technological difficulties in developing a monkeypox vaccine and a quick special review by the Chinese drug administration could help the country develop the vaccine in about a year.”
Pharmaceutical company Sinovac saw sales explode to more than 160 times the year before in the first half of 2021 thanks to the development of a Covid vaccine.
The company raised £9bn in the first six months of last year, up from just £50m in 2020, showing the huge profits that can be made during a pandemic.
Around 221 cases of monkeypox have been confirmed worldwide since the first patient was registered with the rare virus in the UK on May 6.
The United Arab Emirates, the Czech Republic and Slovenia are the latest countries to register cases.
Meanwhile, the Imvanex shot, developed by Denmark-based Bavarian Nordic, is said to be 85 percent effective against monkey pox and Covid.
dr. Romulus Breban, a researcher at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, said the current global outbreak was “waiting to happen” because the world had “near zero” immunity levels.
Nineteen countries have detected cases in the past month, sparking alarm as infections usually only occur in western and central Africa, but have now spread to Europe and the Americas.
For now, there have been only eight cases of monkey pox in the UK, all with connections to travel from West Africa.
But that’s not the case for this outbreak, which has now infected at least 57 in the UK.
Community transmission is already underway in the UK, but the UK Health and Security Agency (UKHSA) emphasizes that the risk to the public is “low”.
Many more are expected to be diagnosed in the coming weeks, experts say.
The disease seems to disproportionately affect gay and bisexual men.
Health leaders have warned gay and bisexual men to watch out for new unexplained rashes.
Monkeypox is not a sexually transmitted disease, but can be transmitted during sex through skin-to-skin contact.
It causes flu-like symptoms before a blister spreads across the body.
And Brits have been warned to be “vigilant” for monkey pox when they hit popular tourist spots for vacation this year.
The agency’s Europe director, Dr. Hans Henri Kluge, warned that as summer kicks off across the continent, mass gatherings, festivals and celebrations could fuel the spread of monkeypox.
dr. Kluge said: “I am concerned that transmission could accelerate as the cases currently being detected are among those engaged in sexual activity and the symptoms are unknown to many.”
When asked about the risk to Britons going to summer festivals or on holiday, chief medical adviser Dr. Susan Hopkins that people should be “vigilant” for the virus.
Dr Hopkins, from UKHSA, told the BBC: “The risk to the general population [from monkeypox] remains extremely low.
“People need to be aware of it and we really want clinicians to be aware of it.”
A leading WHO adviser said the “random” monkeypox outbreak could be explained by risky sexual behavior at two recent mass events in Europe.
A Gay Pride festival in Gran Canaria – attended by 80,000 people – has been linked to a number of cases in Madrid, Tenerife and Italy.
In Spain, which has the most cases of monkey pox in Europe, infections in Madrid’s Malasaña neighborhood were traced to a sauna — Sauna Paraíso — which has since been closed.
A number of other communities followed, reporting more cases, including Andalusia, Galicia, Catalonia, the Basque Country and Extremadura.
A German government report to lawmakers, obtained by the AP, said the risk of contracting monkeypox “appears to lie primarily in sexual contacts between men”.
The four confirmed cases in Germany have been linked to exposure to party events, including in Gran Canaria and in Berlin, it said.
Meanwhile, the three confirmed cases of monkey pox in Belgium have been linked to a large-scale fetish festival in the port city of Antwerp, it was revealed Friday.
dr. David Heymann, who previously headed the WHO’s emergency department, said the main theory to explain the spread of the disease was sexual transmission between gay and bisexual men during two raves in Spain and Belgium.
dr. Heymann told the AP that monkeypox is known to spread if there is close contact with the lesions of someone who is infected.
It appears that sexual contact has now enhanced that transmission, said Dr. heymann.
Monkeypox typically infects humans in Central and West Africa when it jumps from a wild animal, such as rodents and primates, into humans.