Table of Contents
Societies, Volume 10, Issue 2 (June 2020) – 18 articles
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Cover Story (view full-size image) Many human infectious diseases also occur in animals. The virus that causes Covid-19 originates [...] Read more. Many human infectious diseases also occur in animals. The virus that causes Covid-19 originates from bats. Leprosy, one of the oldest plagues of mankind, is, according to Hansen's paradigm, a human-to-human infection. However, we conclude that nature is an important but so far neglected factor in understanding this stigmatizing disease. Ecology not only plays a role in the daily life of Hansen’s disease patients, it also provides the ingredients for local healing practices and myths. The presence of the leprosy bacterium DNA in the soil of armadillo burrows at the abandoned leprosy asylums indicates that the bacterium has settled in these animals. This is in line with the current emerging view that Hansen’s disease can also be regarded as a zoonosis. The transmission of this disease is probably much more complicated than was thought before.