Varicella Zoster Virus

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Indian Council of Medical Research-National Institute of Virology scientists, have for the first time in the country, found the presence of Clade 9 variant of varicella zoster virus (VZV).

About Varicella Zoster Virus:

  • Varicella-zoster is a herpes virus that causes chickenpox, a common childhood illness.
  • It is an exclusively human virus that belongs to the α-herpesvirus family.
  • It is present worldwide and is highly infectious.
  • Primary infection of this virus leads to acute varicella or “chickenpox”.
  • The infections can progress to the central nervous system involvement and severe complications.


Key Facts about Chickenpox

  • It is a highly contagious disease.
  • Symptoms
    • It can cause an itchy, blister-like rash among other symptoms.
    • The rash first appears on the chest, back, and face, and then spreads over the entire body.
  • The virus is spread by:
    • Coming in contact with someone who has chickenpox.
    • Breathing air from an infected person who sneezes or coughs.
    • Coming in contact with fluids from an infected child's eyes, nose or mouth.
  • The incubation period of chickenpox is from 10 to 21days
  • It can be serious, especially during pregnancy, in babies, adolescents, adults, and people with weakened immune systems (lowered ability to fight germs and sickness).


Q1) What is an Astronomical Unit?

An Astronomical Unit (AU) is a unit of measurement used in astronomy to describe distances within our solar system. It is defined as the average distance from the Earth to the Sun.

Source: In a first, scientists identify variant of chickenpox-causing virus: ICMR-NIV study