News and Information
About Ebola Virus Disease
Ebola, previously known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a rare and deadly disease caused by infection with one of the Ebola virus strains. Ebola can cause disease in humans and nonhuman primates (monkeys, gorillas, and chimpanzees).
Ebola is caused by infection with a virus of the family Filoviridae
, genus Ebolavirus
. There are five identified Ebola virus species, four of which are known to cause disease in humans: Ebola virus (Zaire ebolavirus
); Sudan virus (Sudan ebolavirus
); Taï Forest virus (Taï Forest ebolavirus
, formerly Côte d’Ivoire ebolavirus
); and Bundibugyo virus (Bundibugyo ebolavirus
). The fifth, Reston virus (Reston ebolavirus
), has caused disease in nonhuman primates, but not in humans.
Ebola viruses are found in several African countries. Ebola was first discovered in 1976 near the Ebola River in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since then, outbreaks have appeared sporadically in Africa.
The natural reservoir host of Ebola virus remains unknown. However, on the basis of evidence and the nature of similar viruses, researchers believe that the virus is animal-borne and that bats are the most likely reservoir. Four of the five virus strains occur in an animal host native to Africa. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Information for our University Community
Minnesota State University Mankato is taking an active role in preparatory measures in response to the evolving Ebola situation in the United States and abroad, and how it impacts us as an institution of higher education with a global reach.
Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (Minnesota State) and Minnesota State Mankato administration along with the South Central Healthcare Coalition are actively monitoring Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) websites regarding communications and recommendations.
A University planning group has been established to ensure readiness on campus. Dr. David Jones, Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, has been designated by President Davenport as the primary contact in response to the Ebola situation. For additional questions, please contact his office at (507) 389-2121.