Outbreak of Ebola virus strikes DR Congo town of Isiro
- 18 August 2012
- From the section Africa
At least one person has died after an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, officials say.
The death is one of two cases of the virus discovered in the town of Isiro.
Medical charity workers say they are attempting to find and isolate anyone who has been in contact with those infected by the virus.
Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) says the strain is not the same as the kind found recently in neighbouring Uganda.
At least 16 people died during an outbreak there last month.
The DR Congo outbreak occurred in Oriental province, which shares a border with Uganda.
"There is no link between both epidemics at this moment," Anja de Weggheleire, of MSF, told the BBC.
She added that there may be more cases that have yet to be detected.
"Not every person who develops the disease will develop clear symptoms that are recognised as Ebola. For the moment it seems that there are not that many cases but the exact number of cases is unknown."
Experts fear that the town's position as a transit point could make an outbreak more challenging to control.
The virus, which is transmitted to humans from both monkeys and birds, causes massive internal bleeding and has a very high mortality rate.
It is one of the most virulent diseases in the world and is spread by close personal contact.
There is no vaccine for the virus and symptoms of infection include a sudden onset of fever, weakness, headache, vomiting and kidney problems.