University Don says Yorubas are genetically immune to Lassa fever virus

Prof. Christian Happi, claimed that Yoruba people, by the make-up of their genes, are immune to Lassa virus that causes Lassa fever.
The researcher, who is Dean, College of Postgraduate Studies, Department of Biological Sciences, Redeemer’s University, Ede, Osun State, said research was ongoing on why this is so, adding that few cases of Lassa fever recorded among Yoruba people are imported.
Happi, who is Director, World Funded African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Diseases, ACEGID, said Lassa fever virus originated from Nigeria about 1,060 years ago. He further explained that the disease spread to other West African countries about 400 years ago, stressing that the Yorubas have the capacity to resist the virus more than any other ethnic group in country.


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