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West Nile Virus, Part 2
Information on Outbreaks Since 1937

Latest update, 11 Feb 2011

There is a comprehensive historical study of WNV outbreaks in Europe(4), but onset dates are not given. WNV events in each country are generally given by the years in which they occurred. The bibliography of this document is being used to find original published sources in order to get the onset dates.

1951 - Israel
July-August - Galil - Hadera area (N and NW part of Israel). (Israel Ministry of Health: preliminary info.) [Since a firm onset date is not presently known by this writer, July 15th will be used.]

1954 - Israel
July-August - Galil - Hadera area (N and NW part of Israel). (Israel Ministry of Health preliminary info.) This outbreak was in the same area and same time of year as in the 1951 outbreak. These factors seem to indicate a terrestrial source in this case.

1996 - Romania
West Nile encephalitis epidemic in southeastern Romania (2)
Between July 15 and October 12, 1996, 393 [human] patients were identified with serologically confirmed or probable WNF infection, of whom 352 had acute central-nervous-system infections. Report was by members of the Division of Vectorborne Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, CO, USA.

[July 15, 1996 was 34 days following the June 11 Venus inferior conjunction. There may have been earlier cases, but that info has not been found by this writer yet.]

Viral meningitis in Romania - Update 3: 24 September 1966 -
http://www.who.int/disease-outbreak-news/n1996/sept/n24sep1996.html - [Link no longer works.]
As of 23 September, a total of 450 cases of viral meningitis had been reported in the outbreak which started in Bucharest at the end of July. ...The WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Arboviruses and Haemorrhagic Fevers at Pasteur Institute, Paris, France has confirmed infection with West Nile virus in 89% of the patients investigated with very high levels of IgM antibody... Infection with West Nile virus can be asymptomatic or cause an influenza-like illness. Severe manifestations include meningitis and meningoencephalitis... Source: WHO/OMS Communicable Disease Surveillance and Response (CSR) report.

1999 - United States
The first case of West Nile virus in the Western hemisphere has been reported to have occurred in New York City (two dead crows) on June 29, 1999. The onset may have been about two weeks earlier. According to a U.S. Government Accounting Office report(3), a veterinarian at Bayside veterinary clinic (New York City area?) found crows with signs of nervous system disorders in the mid-June to late July 1999 time frame. The birds were treated. Those that survived were released.

Based on the idea that new batches of WNV come to us from Venus, and that our aerobiological "delivery system" most likely behaves in a sporadic fashion, it is postulated that there should have been cases of WNV in geographical pockets around the country at the same time that the eastern seaboard events occurred. (Human population densities in the region of New York City (and surrounding urban areas) would tend to make discovery and reporting of WNV more probable than in less-dense countrywide environs.) Sudden cases of encephalitis, meningitis, and/or poliolike symptoms (of unknown origin) that occurred in the July through October 1999 time frame should be candidates for after-the-fact serological WNV investigations. (The author is aware of two such cases in his northeast Mississippi home town, population 35,000.) Consideration of this matter should not be limited to the United States. [Added 29 September 2002.]

2000 - Israel
16 July - First Human cases.

2001 - Israel
16 July - First Human cases.

2002 - Israel
16 July - First Human cases.

Special Problem
(Added some time in September 2002)

If one chooses to think in terms of extraterrestrial pathogens entering Earth's upper atmosphere one to two months prior to their expression at the Earth's surface, then the upper atmosphere drop-in time frame (for the June 29, 1999 USA WNV bird deaths) would have been roughly April 29 to May 29. In the middle of that period, the angle between Venus and Earth, with respect to the sun, would have been on the order of 70 degrees. At that angle the solar wind should have blown Venusian particles, biological or otherwise, well clear of the Earth. See diagram (A) This looks like trouble for the Venusian pathogen hypothesis.

Blow it away!
Venus-Sun-Earth angle approx 70 degrees - Normal solar wind.
Bad stuff is "blown away."


On the other hand.... (Read: Save the Principle!)

An unprecedented solar wind disruption took place on May 10, 1999, which may have some bearing on the interplanetary particle delivery problem. From late May 10 to early May 12, NASA's ACE and Wind spacecraft observed that the density of the solar wind dropped by more than 98 percent. See NASA's article: The Day the Solar Wind Disappeared.

This writer speculates that the unusually intense Gamma-Ray Burst (GRB 990510), which was also detected on May 10, 1999, at about 8:49 universal time (UT), caused the solar wind disruption just mentioned.

The effects of the GRB should have been at least two-fold. Keep in mind that the GRB radiation roared through the solar system from a point near the South celestial pole, and that most of the material density associated with the solar wind is concentrated near the solar system's equatorial plane. (Click here to see a graph of Ulysses spacecraft data regarding solar wind density and speed as functions of heliographic latitude.)

I suggest that that the majority of all exposed solar wind atomic nuclei, those more massive than hydrogen (H1), would tend to have been photodissociated (all the way down to protons and electrons) by the Gamma radiation.
[The word "disassembled" was replaced by "photodissociated" on 25 November 2004.]

[See: GRB 990510 and a Solar Wind Problem for further details, including the rest of the story about the Gamma induced photodissociation of massive nuclei.

The NASA article, referenced above, described a paucity of heavier ions in the solar wind. (Time frame not stated.) "According to observations from the ACE spacecraft, the density of helium dropped to less that 0.1% of its normal value, and heavier ions, held back by the Sun's gravity, apparently could not escape the Sun at all.") That reads as though the Sun's solar wind propulsion mechanism must have temporarily lost its ability to accelerate the heavier ions to their escape speeds. (There may be a problem with that line of reasoning.) For the average solar wind speed, which is on the order of 400 kilometers per second, it takes 4.3 days for ions to travel from Sun to Earth. If the sun had lost its acceleration vigor, so to speak, at the same time as the wind density began decreasing, we wouldn't have known about it until about four days later.

[This last sentence is not stated correctly. What should have been said is: "If the sun had lost its acceleration vigor, so to speak, at the same time as the wind density began decreasing, there should have been some remarkable corresponding optical or electromagnetic perturbation in the Sun's appearance starting four to five days prior to May 10th." RSF 7 July 2003]

If the GRB unwound the heavier nuclei, then the deed should have been accomplished within a fraction of a second* whenever/wherever the radiation passed through a given volume of space. Instant plasma puree! Comparison of various spacecraft data has probably already resolved that question. *GRB 990510 had a complex light curve which lasted approximately 105 seconds.

GRB 990510 light curve

For info on GRB 990510 see the European Southern Observatory (ESO) press release
Southern Fireworks above ESO Telescopes, 18 May 1999, and the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) press release The Light of 5 Billion Billion Suns, 19 May 1999.

For a neat description of gamma-ray bursts, see NASA's article What is a Gamma-ray Burst?.
To see a currently unorthodox hypothesis on Gamma-ray Bursts, go to Ritzian Gamma-ray Bursts.

Send comments/inputs to Robert Fritzius at fritzius@bellsouth.net
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