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Scientists Warn That Zika Virus Is Spreading Rapidly Across The Country



Scientists Warn That Zika Virus Is Spreading Rapidly Across The Country

(CTN News) – Researchers say the Zika virus (ZIKV), caused by mosquitoes, is spreading across the country and could well spread further if health authorities don’t take precautionary measures soon.

Scientists from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) reported in a health journal that Zika virus cases have been detected in Delhi, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Punjab, and Telangana in recent days.

There were 65 patients who tested positive for ZIKV (the disease caused by Zika virus). In two cases, ZIKV and dengue co-infection were observed, while in one case, ZIKV, chikungunya, and dengue co-infection were observed.

Six years ago, Zika Virus disease was placed under surveillance. Early cases were detected mostly in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. In Kerala, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh, dengue, which is caused by mosquitoes, spread rapidly last year.

It was prepared with the National Institute of Virology in Pune, AIIMS and RML in Delhi and Ranchi Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS).

In May and October of last year, about 1500 clinical samples were collected from 13 states to check for dengue and chikungunya.

Additionally, 121 patients were positive for dengue, and 10 for chikungunya.

Scientists stressed the need for regular screening and constant monitoring of Zika Virus, Dengue, and Chikungunya cases.

“It’s also critical to strengthen linkages between ZIKV surveillance sites and newborn birth defect screening sites in the country to understand the spectrum of ZVD among babies born to Zika Virus infected mothers.”

The development of quick and reliable tests and validation of simple serology-based tests for Zika Virus will help in augmenting diagnostic capabilities.”

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