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Study: Viruses 'more dangerous' in the mornings

18/08/2016

Study: Viruses 'more dangerous' in the morningsA new study by the University of Cambridge in the UK has found that viruses are more dangerous when they infect people in the mornings.

In fact, the findings of the study, which were published in the medical journal PNAS, show that virus infections that occur in the morning can be up to 10 times more dangerous for the individual.

For the study, the Cambridge researchers infected mice at different times of the day with either influenza or herpes. They then looked whether there was any correlation between the time of day when the infection occurred and the potency of the virus. Mice that were infected in the morning were found to have viral levels 10 times higher than those infected in the evening.

Unlike bacteria or parasites, viruses rely on the cells of their host to replicate and grow. However, those cells change dramatically throughout the day as part of our 24-hour body clocks.

The researchers say their findings could pave the way for stopping pandemics. For example, when faced with a pandemic, it could be life-saving for people to stay inside during the daytime.

A virus infection in the evening is like someone trying to hijack a factory once all the workers have gone home. In other words, it's likely to be unsuccessful.
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