There are no vaccines available for B virus. Experimental vaccines have been evaluated in animal models, but none are being considered for human trial.
With the substantial increase in the use of macaque models for research (e.g., HIV), the number of potential human exposures to B virus has increased concomitantly. This has led to the publication of guidelines, which have been updated several times, by expert panels of virologists, veterinarians, and physicians—the Recommendations for Prevention of and Therapy for Exposure to B virus (Cercopithecine Herpesvirus 1 in Clinical Infectious Diseases, 2002.
Principal Recommendations for Prevention
While exposures that involve unpredictable, potentially aggressive animals are not completely preventable, adherence to appropriate laboratory and animal facility protocols will greatly reduce the risk of B virus transmission.
- Work with B virus–susceptible monkeys should be done using humane restraint methods that reduce the potential for bites and scratches.
- Proper personal protective equipment, including a lab coat, gloves, and a face shield, must be used when working with macaque monkeys.
- Any bites, scratches, or exposure to the tissues or secretions of macaques must be cleansed immediately, as detailed in the Recommendations mentioned above.
- Following B virus exposure, samples from both the exposed human and the implicated macaque should be sent for B virus diagnostic testing (see Specimen Collection section).
For more detailed information, refer to the Recommendations for Prevention of and Therapy for Exposure to B virus (Cercopithecine Herpesvirus 1) as well as other resources listed in the Resources and Publications section.
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