WHO Renames Monkeypox; Global Experts Hold Discourse

Story Highlights
  • Monkeypox variants renamed as Clades I, IIa and IIb.
  • WHO made the announcement on Saturday.
  • The renaming was done to avoid causing any cultural or social offence

New Delhi: The WHO has announced to rename the Monkeypox disease in an attempt to rename the misconception and stigma around the Zoonotic disease’s current name.

The Monkeypox based on the variants is called the Clades I, II and IIb. The naming was done based on discussions by global experts on pox virology, evolutionary biology on the phylogeny and nomenclature of known and new monkeypox virus variants or clades.

“Newly identified viruses, related diseases and virus variants are given names to avoid causing offence to any cultural, social, national, regional, professional, or ethnic groups, and minimize the negative impact on trade, travel, tourism, or animal welfare,” said WHO said in a statement.

“The group reached consensus on new nomenclature for the virus clades which is in line with best practices. They agreed on how the virus clades should be recorded and classified on genome sequence repository sites,” the statement also said.

According to WHO, “Consensus was reached to now refer to the former Congo Basin (Central African) clade as Clade one (I) and the former West African clade as Clade two (II). Additionally, it was agreed that the Clade II consists of two subclades.”

The renaming came hours after the national capital of India reported its fifth case of zoonotic disease which did not have a recent travel history.

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