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Beyond Fear: A Comprehensive Exploration of Rabies Virus and Its Implications

Beyond Fear: A Comprehensive Exploration of Rabies Virus and Its Implications

Muhammad Wasif Gulzar*, Riffat Maqsood, Muhammad Zain, Muhammad Suleman, Tayyab Ur Rehman, Sana Asif, Abdul Wadood and Jawad Hussain

Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan.

*Correspondence | Muhammad Wasif Gulzar, Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan; Email:


The Rabies virus belongs to the family Rhabdoviridae and genus Lyssavirus. It is a neurological infection that is transmitted through animals and can be lethal. It is a disease that affects all warm-blooded species and is widespread worldwide, except for islands like Australia and Antarctica. Rabies causes more than 60,000 deaths annually, although every year about 15 million people receive Rabies Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP). Wildlife including raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes are major rabies reservoirs. The disease is primarily spread by the bite of a rabid animal and the saliva of an infected host. The incubation period (average 2-3 months) varies greatly, with periods ranging from 2 weeks to 6 years. Neuropathological lesions are typically modest, despite significant neurologic symptoms and a deadly prognosis. The Rabies virus uses several strategies to circumvent the host’s defenses. As a major zoonosis, initial treatment and successful preventive and control efforts depend on a clear and prompt diagnosis. For the diagnosis of Rabies, conventional techniques such as Direct Fluorescent Antibody Test (dFAT) and histopathology are still employed. The OIE and WHO both frequently propose the gold standard test, the Direct Fluorescent Antibody Test (dFAT), for the diagnosis of Rabies in fresh canine brain tissues. The preferred methods for routine diagnosis include PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction), and Mouse Inoculation Test (MIT). In endemic locations, vaccinations with DNA, recombinant vaccines, and live, attenuated, or inactivated viruses can be administered. This study provides comprehensive information on immunization, treatment techniques, pathophysiology, epidemiology, transmission, and relevant preventive and control measures.

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Pakistan Journal of Zoology


Pakistan J. Zool., Vol. 56, Iss. 3, pp. 1001-1500


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