Published: Sun, May 27, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Nipah advisory for health societies

Nipah advisory for health societies

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) had written to the Queensland government in Australia asking it to provide the antibody developed there to test if it can "neutralise" the virus in humans.

According to an official, the droppings, urine and secretions of the bats would also be sent for testing.

Bhubaneswar: Odisha government has taken precautionary measures to tackle deadly Nipah Virus (NiV) that claimed 11 lives so far in Kerala.

Spread of the virus to humans may occur after close contact with other Nipah infected people, infected bats, or infected pigs. Some people can also experience atypical pneumonia and severe respiratory problems, including acute respiratory distress.

The Kerala high court on Friday sought the views of central and state governments on a petition for blocking videos put up on social media refuting the government's alleged stance that Nipah virus is behind the deaths in Northern Kerala.

A 24-year-old software engineer was referred to Fever Hospital from a corporate hospital in Gachibowli after he showed flu-like symptoms while another 22-year-old patient at NIMS is now in coma as he is suffering from encephalitis.

Fruit bats are the natural host of NiV.

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Although the outbreaks revealed that Nipah can be spread by contact with infected patients, fruit bats are now considered to be one of its most prolific spreaders.

On May 24, CEPI said it would grant up to $25 million over the next five years to USA pharma firms Profectus BioSciences and Emergent BioSolutions to advance the development of a vaccine against the viral infection, which has proved to be fatal in 70% of cases.

The State Health Society Bihar has asked the district health societies to report cases of encephalitis if they come in clusters from any place, in precaution against the Nipah virus.

Officials of Medical and Health Department also said that they were advising people not to visit Kerala at least till the situation comes under control.

Richard Hatchett, MD, chief executive officer of CEPI, said, the group's first funding agreement to develop a vaccine against Nipah virus marks a vital step forward in the global battle against the disease. "The disease is treated with supportive and symptomatic care which is the mainstay of the treatment", maintains the advisory.

Recently 21 samples of pigs and bats were forwarded to Animal Disease Laboratory at the capital city of Madhya Pradesh.

As in the case of the first outbreak in 1998, bats may pass the virus to other animals and livestock, which can then pass it on to humans.

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