edMonkey pox is a rare viral disease that was first discovered in 1958 in laboratory monkeys during the course of a survey of smallpox. It is thought that the virus had previously gone unnoticed in wild forest animals in Central and West Africa.
In certain parts of Africa, indigenous people are exposed to the virus through contact with infected animals, such as squirrels and monkeys, which spreads the infection to humans. The virus has been identified in several animal species, including squirrels, rats, mice, and primates. Human-to-human transmission has also been reported, though it is relatively rare.