India moves closer to getting its first indigenous vaccine against dengue

Source: The post is based on the article “India moves closer to getting its first indigenous vaccine against dengue” published in The Hindu on 16th May 2023

What is the News?

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has said that the trials for a potential dengue vaccine are ongoing, but they have not yet fully started.

What is Dengue?

Dengue is a viral infection caused by the dengue virus (DENV), transmitted to humans through the bites of infected female mosquitoes, primarily the Aedes aegypti mosquito.

Symptoms: Most people who get dengue won’t have symptoms. But for those that do, the most common symptoms are high fever, headache, body aches, nausea and rash. Most will also get better in 1–2 weeks. 

– Some people develop severe dengue and need care in a hospital. In severe cases, dengue can be fatal. 

Cases: Dengue is found in tropical and sub-tropical climates worldwide, mostly in urban and semi-urban areas.

– About half of the world’s population is now at risk of dengue with an estimated 100–400 million infections occurring each year.

– In 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) identified dengue to be one among the top 10 global health threats.

Treatment: Prevention and control of dengue depend on vector control. There is no specific treatment for dengue/severe dengue, and early detection and access to proper medical care greatly lower fatality rates of severe dengue.

Note: There is a vaccine called Dengvaxia for people who have had dengue at least once and live in places where the disease is common.

Notifiable disease: In India, dengue is a notifiable disease, but a case is required to be notified only when the confirmatory test has been done in the lab.

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