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South Asia

Issue Date: Aug 15, 2009
Cure from Cuba: Two Cuban epidemiologists arrived in Sri Lanka to help the government combat a dengue epidemic. Cuba has been controlling dengue with Bacillus Thuringensis Israelensis bacteria that kills the larvae of the mosquitoes that spread dengue. The epidemiologists will help set up a framework to control mosquito breeding before the government imports the bacteria from Cuba. Over 180 deaths and 18,000 cases of infection have been reported in the country this year. It is a sharp increase from 2008 when 85 people died of dengue fever.

Science & Technology - Briefs

Issue Date: Jan 31, 2009
conservation Fishing casualties

In Short

Issue Date: Feb 29, 2008
>> Mali's government has ordered the closure of 104 refined cooking oil factories across the country after an investigation revealed most of them don't have necessary equipment to produce safely-refined cooking oil. Most of the cooking oil contain gossypol, a toxic substance naturally produced by cotton plants, which causes sterility, cancer and inhibits growth. >> A health alert has been declared in Paraguay in a bid to stop a new outbreak of dengue. So far this year, health

New diagnostic kit distinguishes between dengue & chikungunya virus.

Issue Date: Dec 31, 2007
a new diagnostic kit can distinguish dengue from chikungunya virus faster. Developed by the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram, the kit helps in distinguishing between the two viruses within two to three days of symptoms showing up. Symptoms of the two diseases are more or less similar and regular tests take at least a week to detect. The test was conducted only in chikungunya-affected districts in Kerala. The scientists tested 120 samples, of which 65 per cent tested positive for chikungunya.

Over production of enzyme triggers dengue

Issue Date: Jan 31, 2007
dengue took a heavy toll on India in mid-2006 (see box Sting in the tale) Aedes mosquito is the carrier of this virus, but the ailment assumes alarming proportions due to an enzyme metalloproteinase, notes to a paper published online on October 6, 2006, in embo, a sister publication of the journal Nature. E xcess production of this enzyme causes extensive damage to the body.

Dengue outbreak in Delhi

Issue Date: Oct 31, 2006
delhi is in the grips of a severe outbreak of dengue, which has claimed a number of lives. Dengue cases started being reported in the capital since early September, but the issue came into focus when a student at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences died of the disease on September 30, 2006. The prime minister's family getting affected on October 4, 2006, further brought the issue into prominence.

Mumbai hit with diseases after rains

Author(s): PAYAL MEHTA
Issue Date: Aug 31, 2006
after the monsoon deluge, Mumbai has witnessed an outbreak of diseases such as malaria, dengue and leptospirosis, taking the death toll to 68 on August 2. The pace at which people are dying is alarming. Besides, Mumbai has recorded an increase in water-borne diseases like typhoid, hepatitis and gastroenteritis, caused due to contamination of drinking water supply. A total of 3,326 people have fallen prey to these diseases (see table: Death toll).

In Short

Issue Date: Nov 15, 2004
dengue resurfaces: Delhi is once again in the grip of dengue. The disease claimed its first victim at Apollo Hospital on October 5, 2004. Over 180 cases have already been reported in the capital. The disease is also spreading in the neighbouring town of Noida; media reports claimed the occurrence of 25 cases. Health officials say continuous showers and high humidity is hindering the campaign against the disease. They predict a spurt in dengue cases.

Spreading the word

Issue Date: Aug 31, 2004
With dengue fever spreading in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Indonesia and Sri Lanka, the World Health Organisation (who) has issued a warning to all neighbouring countries. Around 658 people have died in Indonesia, 59 in Sri Lanka and three in Bangladesh. There are around 68,000 suspected cases of the disease. Bhutan, which has never reported the disease, alone has around 1,565 suspected cases.

Trap them all

Author(s): Sarita Bahl
Issue Date: Jul 15, 2004
after the failure of its fogging drive and public awareness campaigns aimed at combating dengue and malaria, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (mcd) has decided to use oviposition (ov) traps. This tool is widely used in Singapore -- a hot spot for the diseases.
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