- Researchers believe new strains of leprosy are linked to strains from 27,000 years ago
- A person exposed to leprosy may not develop symptoms for 20 years
(CNN)Leprosy was thought to have been eradicated from the UK for centuries -- until now. It turns out the disease has been harbored, perhaps since the Middle Ages, in red squirrels in the British Isles. And research indicates that these squirrels could transmit the disease to humans, though the chances are low.