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Emergent Risk Group-4 (RG-4) Filoviruses: A paradox in progress



John T. Sinnott1, Kami Kim1, Charurut Somboonwit1, Conor Cosnett2, David Segal3 & Paul Shapshak1*



1Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health, Department of Internal Medicine, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida 33606. USA; 2Wolfram Research Inc., Champaigne, Illinois 61820 USA, 3College of Health Sciences and Public Policy, Walden University, Minneapolis, Minnesota  55401 USA, *Corresponding author



John T. Sinnott - E-mail: johntsinnott@gmail.com

Kami Kim - E-mail: kamikim@usf.edu

Charurut Somboonwit - E-mail: charurut@usf.edu   

Conor Cosnett - E-mail: conorc@wolfram.com

David Segal - E-mail:  david.segal @waldenu.edu 

Paul Shapshak - E-mail:  pshapshak@gmail.com     


Article Type




Received August 1, 2023; Revised August 31, 2023; Accepted August 31, 2023, Published August 31, 2023



Filoviruses, categorized as World Health Organization (WHO) Risk Group 4 (RG-4) pathogens, represent significant global health risks due to their extraordinary virulence. The Filoviridae family encompasses Ebola strains such as Sudan, Zaire, Bundibugyo, Tai Forest (formerly known as Ivory Coast), Reston, and Bombali, in addition to the closely related Marburg and Ravn virus strains. Filoviruses originated from a common ancestor about 10,000 years ago and displayed remarkable consistency in genetic heterogeneity until the 20th century. However, they overcame a genetic bottleneck by mid-century. Paradoxically, this resulted in the emergence of boosted virulent strains from the 1970’s onward. Filovirus research is included in the NIAID Biodefense Program and utilizes the highest level specialized protective laboratories, Biosafety Laboratory (BSL)-4. The spread of Filoviruses as well as other RG-4 pathogens within Africa poses a significant health threat increasingly both in Africa and out of Africa.



Filoviridae, Ebola, Sudan, Zaire, Bundibugyo, Tai forest (formerly Côte d’Ivoire), Reston, Bombali, Marburg, Ravn, Cueva, Thamno, and Stria viruses, World Health Organization (WHO) Risk Group 4 (RG-4) virus pathogens, Biosafety Laboratory (BSL)-4, emergent virus, global warming, ecology, vector, reservoir, humans, monkeys, bats, rodents, sexual risk, health-care setting, virulence, paradox, biodefense, Wolfram Mathematica, ChatGPT, NIH, NIAID, CDC.



Sinnott et al. Bioinformation 19(8): 829-832 (2023)


Edited by

P Kangueane






Biomedical Informatics



This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.