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Bundesgesundheitsblatt Gesundheitsforschung Gesundheitsschutz. 2015 Jul;58(7):705-13. doi: 10.1007/s00103-015-2165-y.

[Epidemiology of Ebola virus disease and of other highly contagious, life-threatening diseases with low incidence in Germany].

[Article in German]

Author information

Arbeitsgruppe Infektionsepidemiologie, Bernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin (BNITM), Bernhard-Nocht-Str. 74, 20359, Hamburg, Deutschland.

Erratum in

  • [Not Available]. [Bundesgesundheitsblatt Gesundheitsforschung Gesundheitsschutz. 2015]


Apart from sporadic exported cases, the occurrence of Ebola, Marburg and Lassa virus diseases is limited to the African continent. Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever occurs in Southeastern Europe but, so far, not in Germany. Other hemorrhagic fever disease-viruses occur in distinct regions in South America. Pulmonary plague is the bacterial infectious disease with the most contagious and lethal course and it is endemic to Madagascar and East Africa, but also occurs in other countries (e.g. India, USA). Monkey pox epidemics have occurred in remote areas of the Congo Basin. Such outbreaks could potentially become more common with the discontinuation of the cross-protective smallpox vaccination. The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that emerged in 2002/2003 is another pathogen with significant epidemic potential. Typical for these diseases is a natural circulation between reservoir animals in remote areas. Sporadic transmission to humans can occur through contact with an infected animal. Subsequent human-to-human transmission can lead to epidemics, such as the current outbreak of Ebola virus disease in West Africa.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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