The virus is called HTLV-1, or the T-cell leukemia virus type 1, something that is uncommonly heard and new to medical discussion.
This is why the Institute of Human Virology, which based on the University of Maryland, calls the public to apply extra vigilance and efforts in the prevention of spread of the disease.
So far, the Central Australia has the most number of cases, with more than 40% of its adults are carrier of the disease most especially the people from the indigenous communities. The figure was according to reports first appeared in CNN.
Dr. Robert Gallo, who served as the director of the organization, stressed that “the prevalence is off the charts,” and he is worried that little efforts are being carried out in the development and discovery for the treatment, or at least a vaccine, against the disease.
The virus is dubbed as a distant cousin to HIV, which can be traced in countries such as Japan, Latin America, and some parts of Africa and Australia. HTLV-1 attacks the blood cells, which can result in severe leukemia or the inability to walk.
The said virus can be transmitted from one person to another through sexual intercourse but according to Dr. William Schaffner, only 2-6% of carriers will develop a disease.