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PAHO Documents Increase In Dengue Fever Cases In Latin America

Countries in Latin America “are bracing this year for a particularly virulent outbreak of the mosquito-borne tropical disease” known as dengue fever, after reports show an increase in the number of cases recorded this year, Agence France-Presse reports. “The Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) said so far it has logged some 146,000 cases in the first three months of the year, of which 79 have been fatal. This time last year there were some 79,000 cases of dengue reported, with 26 deaths,” the news service writes.

Also In Global Health News: Halted WFP Operations In Somalia; India Food Security; Dengue In Puerto Rico; MDR-TB In Peru

Militants In Somalia Demand WFP Halt Operations “Somalia’s Islamist al-Shabaab militia ordered the World Food Programme [WFP] to halt operations in the country, accusing the United Nations agency of undermining domestic agriculture and supporting foreign troops,” Bloomberg/BusinessWeek reports (Omar, 3/1). “Even in the best years, arid Somalia is only able…

Recent Releases In Global Health

ASTMH Meeting Blog: The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene’s (ASTMH) “Annual Meeting Blog” has a number of posts from this week’s gathering, including: “The ethics of overseas clinical research”; an interview with John Cook, former ASTMH president; American attention to dengue fever; a profile of Michele Barry, senior…

Sanofi Pasteur’s Dengue Vaccine Enters Phase III Trial In Australia

Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of the pharmaceutical group Sanofi-Aventis, on Thursday announced the company had begun testing its dengue fever vaccine in a Phase III clinical trial in Australia, Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal reports. “Sanofi-Aventis already performed earlier clinical tests on children and adults with the vaccine in the U.S., Asia and Latin America,” Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal adds (Landauro, 11/4).

Also In Global Health News: WFP In North Korea; Maternal Health In Indonesia; Possible Vaccine Contamination; GM Mosquitoes In Malaysia; Mobile Micro-Insurance In Kenya

World Food Programme Director Visits North Korea, Tours Food Factory U.N. World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director Josette Sheeran and former U.S. Special Envoy Jack Pritchard arrived in North Korea Tuesday, Agence France-Presse reports (11/2). The visit is WFP’s “first top-level visit to the communist country in nearly 10 years,” the…

NPR Reports On Dengue Vaccine Progress

NPR’s “SHOTS” blog examines the growing interest of pharmaceutical companies to develop a vaccine to protect against the dengue virus.

Recent Releases In Global Health

Global Fund Replenishment: Noting that the recent Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria replenishment meeting fell short of reaching its funding target, a Lancet Editorial states: “The world is backsliding on its commitments, made recently at the Millennium Development Goal Summit in New York, to expand access for…

Research Suggests Number Of Dengue Cases Three Times Higher Than Current WHO Estimate

“Around 390 million people are infected each year with dengue fever — the world’s fastest-spreading tropical disease — more than triple the current estimate by the World Health Organization, experts said on Sunday,” Reuters reports. The findings, published by researchers from the University of Oxford and the Wellcome Trust in the…

Central American Countries Mobilizing Against Widespread Dengue Outbreak

“Central America is on track to have one of its worst years ever for the painful, sometimes fatal disease of dengue, prompting governments across the region to mobilize against the mosquito-borne virus,” the Associated Press reports in an article examining efforts by several countries. “There have been 120,000 suspected cases…

Singapore Facing Record Dengue Outbreak

“An unusually severe dengue epidemic in Singapore has claimed its fifth fatality this year, even as health officials try to beat back the city-state’s worst-ever outbreak of the tropical disease,” the Wall Street Journal’s “Southeast Asia Real Time” blog reports. “The death of a 52-year-old man Tuesday came despite signs…