[health-vn] Dengue fever ravishes southern Vietnam
vern.weitzel at gmail.com
Sun May 10 00:46:15 EST 2009
Dengue fever ravishes southern Vietnam
14:24' 09/05/2009 (GMT+7)
VietNamNet Bridge - More than 13,000 people in southern Vietnam have contracted
dengue fever already this year, and 11 of them had died as of May 3, the
director of the Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City said Friday.
The south, where the disease is far more prevalent, accounts for 84.4 percent of
the current number of dengue fever cases nationwide, Dr. Tran Ngoc Huu told a
Dengue is no longer restricted to the rainy season and could strike at any time
of the year, he said.
Unsurprisingly, it is among the top five infectious diseases with the highest
numbers of cases and deaths in Vietnam.
The poor drainage in slum areas, a result of the country’s urbanization and
industrialization, along with the warm climate create the ideal conditions for
dengue fever to break out.
There is no commercial vaccine to protect against dengue yet, but several
vaccines are at the experimental stage, Huu said.
The Pasteur Institute is working with Sanofi-Pasteur, the vaccines division of
Sanofi-Aventis Group, to carry out clinical studies of Sanofi’s tetravalent
dengue vaccine, which is also being trialed in Thailand, the Philippines and
If the trials yield good results, a novel vaccine against dengue will be
available in 2015 or 2016, said Wartel Nguyen N.T. Anh, SanofiPasteur’s regional
medical director of clinical development.
The mosquito-borne disease, which is caused by any of four viruses, infects an
estimated 230 million people annually and is a potential threat to almost half
the world’s population, according to Sanofi-Aventis.
More information about the health-vn