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Yale Scientist Infected With Rare Virus Released From Hospital

August 29, 1994

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) _ A scientist infected with a rare, rodent-borne virus during a laboratory accident was released from a hospital Monday and doctors said his prognosis was good.

Dr. Jean-Paul Gonzalez was admitted to Yale-New Haven Hospital on Aug. 20 after becoming only the third person in the world known to have contracted Sabia arenavirus.

The virus was first documented in Brazil in January 1990 when an agricultural engineer died. A Brazilian lab technician infected with the virus survived.

Gonzalez infected himself Aug. 8 when he was cleaning up a tissue culture containing the virus that spilled from a shattered test tube in a laboratory at the Yale School of Medicine.

Officials of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and the Connecticut health department said his discharge poses no threat to the public.

But as a precaution, health officials are monitoring the health of people who had contact with him after the spill.

Sabia arenavirus has some similarities but is not directly linked to hantavirus, a rodent-borne disease that has killed more than 70 people in the United States and Mexico, the CDC said.

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