Thursday, February 19, 2009
The mosquito-borne disease, caused by four types of dengue viruses, occurs mostly in tropical and subtropical countries but is spreading to new parts of the globe. This month there have been over 300 cases of Dengue in Australia's North Queensland region. After decades of absence in the United States, dengue has broken out on the Texas-Mexico border, and experts add that widespread dengue infection in the continental US is a real possibility.
A typical dengue infection confines a patient to bed for more than a week with fever and severe limb pains, but most recover. In less than five percent of cases, however, dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) and dengue shock syndrome (DSS), with often deadly complications, develop just as the fever breaks.
Dengue Vaccine is being developed by French vaccines maker Sanofi Pasteur. Its experimental tetravalent dengue vaccine was the first to reach this stage of clinical development. The trial will take place in Thailand.