CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Ibnosina Journal of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences 2024; 16(02): 049-056
DOI: 10.1055/s-0044-1786684
Review Article

Global Re-emergence of Monkeypox: A Synoptic Review

1   Department of Medical Microbiology, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
1   Department of Medical Microbiology, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
› Author Affiliations
Funding None.


As the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic continues to rage, the unprecedented manifold increase in monkeypox (mpox) cases throughout the world is raising qualms about a possible pandemic. As of January 2024, the disease has been reported in around 116 countries, with nearly 92,500 confirmed cases and 170 deaths. In this mini-review, we have endeavored to cover multiple aspects of the mpox disease. Mpox virus is an enveloped double-stranded DNA virus that belongs to the Orthopoxvirus genus. The disease is endemic in certain African countries. Until recently, however, the disease was rarely reported in Europe and the United States. In contrast to the previous outbreaks outside Africa, reported cases in the 2022 outbreak did not travel to the endemic areas. Superspreading events at mass gatherings, multiple-partner sexual encounters, and international travel were major drivers of the recent global outbreak of mpox. The 2022 mpox virus may have undergone accelerated evolution. It diverges from the related 2018 to 2019 viruses by around 50 single-nucleotide polymorphisms, some of which brought about amino acid changes in immunogenic surface glycoprotein B21. Differential diagnosis for mpox could be quite challenging since it can masquerade as a wide variety of illnesses. Worse still, some patients may be asymptomatic or show subtle symptoms. The infection is confirmed by conventional or real-time polymerase chain reaction on lesion material. Although there is no specific therapy approved for mpox infections, two antivirals (tecovirimat and brincidofovir) and vaccinia immune globulin may be used. Vaccines also provide protection against mpox when properly administered prior to exposure. Finally, the implementation of preventive measures is of paramount importance, especially in regions where mpox transmission is widespread and among high-risk populations.

Authors' Contributions

M.M. wrote the manuscript. H.M. contributed to the conception of the study and performed the literature searches. M.M. reviewed the manuscript. All authors approved its final version.

Publication History

Article published online:
08 May 2024

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