Zoonotic diseases like COVID-19 and monkeypox will become more common, experts say


Cases of monkeypox are on the rise in the U.S., with about 67,600 global cases, including about 25,500 in the U.S. Simultaneously, the world is still facing a COVID-19 pandemic, despite the number of cases tapering off.

Researchers say these types of viruses, known as zoonotic diseases, or ones that spread between humans and animals, will become increasingly commonplace as factors such as the destruction of animal habitats and human expansion into previously uninhabited areas intensify.

Humans and animals are interacting more

Monkeypox was first found in monkeys in 1958 and in humans in 1970, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Elements such as deforestation, population growth and animal breeding have removed the boundaries between where humans and wild animals live, bringing them into closer contact.