A recent study by researchers at the University of Cambridge has suggested that viruses are ten times dangerous if they can attack the cells of the hosts in the morning, according to reports published by the BBC. A report in the BBC stated, "The findings, published in PNAS, showed viruses were 10 times more successful if the infection started in the morning. And the animal studies found that a disrupted body clock - caused by shift-work or jet lag - was always vulnerable to infection. The researchers say the findings could lead to new ways of stopping pandemics. Viruses - unlike bacteria or parasites - are completely dependent on hijacking the machinery inside cells in order to replicate."
It went on to add, "In the study, mice were infected with either influenza, which causes flu, or herpes virus, which can cause a range of diseases including cold sores. The mice infected in the morning had 10 times the viral levels of those infected in the evening.The late viruses were failing after essentially trying to hijack a factory after all the workers had gone home."
The BBC also spoke to one of the researchers, named Professor Akhilesh Reddy, who said, "It's a big difference. The virus needs all the apparatus available at the right time, otherwise it might not ever get off the ground, but a tiny infection in the morning might perpetuate faster and take over the body." Professor Reddy think that the findings could help in controlling outbreaks, "In a pandemic, staying in during the daytime could be quite important and save people's lives, it could have a big impact if trials bear it out."
One of the authors of the study, Dr. Rachel Edgar spoke on who could be more susceptible to such attack, "This indicates that shift workers, who work some nights and rest some nights and so have a disrupted body clock, will be more susceptible to viral diseases. If so, then they could be prime candidates for receiving the annual flu vaccines."