Disease transmission from humans to wild apes perspectives on the costs and benefits of research and conservation.код для вставкиСкачать
American Journal of Primatology 70:715 (2008) COMMENTARY Disease Transmission From Humans to Wild Apes: Perspectives on the Costs and Benefits of Research and Conservation PAUL A. GARBER Department of Anthropology, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois As many of you may be aware, a recent article in the journal Current Biology (Köndgen et al., Curr Biol 18:260–264, 2008) offers direct evidence of respiratory disease transmission from a human vector, possibly researchers and ecotourists, to wild chimpanzees. The authors of this manuscript detail recent cases of respiratory disease outbreaks in 1999, 2004, and 2006 at Taı̈ Forest, Côte d’Ivoire. Autopsies revealed that each of seven chimpanzees that died tested positive for human paramyxoviruses. Similar disease events are known or suspected in other chimpanzee populations and have been a major cause of mortality for decades (see the research article in this issue of the American Journal of Primatalogy by Taranjit Kaur and colleagues documenting the presence of a fatal human-related metapneumovirus in wild chimpanzees in Tanzania and Williams et als paper on causes of death of chimpanzees at Gombe, Tanzania). This has sparked a series of popular media reports and considerable debate concerning the costs and benefits to surviving ape populations of scientific research, methods researchers should use to monitor and prevent disease transmission to apes from the local human population, ecotourists, and scientists, the development of risk assessment plans for vaccinating and providing health care to wild primates, and the value of research and tourism in conserving primate habitats and populations. We are at a critical moment in primatology and primate conservation in which we need to rethink, reevaluate, and develop new protocols to minimize disease transmission risk based on the collective expertise of researchers in fields such as behavioral ecology, anthropology, epidemiology, veterinary medicine, conservation and ecosystem health, pharmacology, government, and industry. As executive editor of the American Journal of Primatology I feel that issues of great ape research and ecosystems health are critically important to our readership, and we have decided to use the August 2008 issue to introduce a new commentary format in AJP. Our goal is to present a focused, informed, and balanced forum for the discussion of these issues from a range of scientific perspectives. To this end, I have worked with Dr. Tony Goldberg of the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois, Urbana to invite a set of distinguished scholars including field and laboratory researchers, wildlife veterinarians, virologists, and conservation biologists to write commentaries on the benefits and potential negative consequences of research on wild apes, especially as they pertain to disease transmission. This forum also will serve as a venue for publishing rational recommendations on how to best limit disease transmission to apes and other primates in the contexts of research, conservation, and tourism. I encourage our readers to write letters to AJP in response to these commentaries or to contact our editorial board if there are important issues that you feel should be featured in future commentaries. Some of the letters we receive will be published in future volumes of our journal. The contributors to the great ape health commentary include researchers working at several sites across Africa. I thank them for contributing to this volume. Although we lack commentaries from scholars studying ecosystem health and the possibility of disease transmission from humans to bonobos or orangutans, we see the existing commentaries as a first step in an important new direction for the American Journal of Primatology. Our goal is to provide our readers with an active intellectual forum for the exchange of ideas, in addition to the publication of research articles, review articles, and brief reports. Correspondence to: Paul A. Garber, Department of Anthropology, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61802. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org DOI 10.1002/ajp.20561 Published online 21 May 2008 in Wiley InterScience (www. interscience.wiley.com). r 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.