Sikkim governmentt issues advisory on Nipah Virus

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PIL against "quacks" Two law students have moved Kerala HC against videos allegedly spreading misinformation about Nipah virus.

Nipah virus is a newly emerging disease that can cause serious harm to both humans and animals.

The virus was first reported in Malaysia among the pig farmers in 1998 and the pigs were the intermediate host.

Historically, the virus had largely remained in a cluster, meaning it was mostly confined to an area, and affected those that came in close contact to the patients, the experts said.

So far, the virus has claimed 12 lives in Kerala.

Although the risk of getting infected with the virus from bats and pigs are low in Bhutan, Dr Karma Lhazeen said the risk is in people travelling in and out of the affected places.

The antibody will be brought to the state soon, the minister told reporters here.

All the people who are in close contact with the patients are put under the strict observation. Also, people infected with the disease can spread the virus.

Carried by fruit bats Nipah virus has killed several people in southern India
Carried by fruit bats Nipah virus has killed several people in southern India

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.

With funding from CEPI, Profectus BioSciences and Emergent BioSolutions will be working on a vaccine for humans based on virus technology developed over 15 years ago by researchers Christopher Broder and Katharine Bossart at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, writes Quartz.

Contracting Nipah causes an upper respiratory infection, leading to fever, body ache, breathlessness and cough.

Depending upon the exposure to the virus, it can also proceed to further complication like Encephalitis - inflammation of the brain. The team, which is in Kozhikode, has been in the forefront to "draft the guidelines, case definitions, advisory for healthcare workers, information to the general public, advisories for sample collection and transportation", officials of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare have said.

There is no vaccine for Nipah, and no treatment beyond supportive care to make patients comfortable. Currently, there is no known treatment against the virus, which proved fatal in 70% of recorded cases. It is the water from the said well that the victims had been using. There is no need to panic.

With samples of insectivores bats testing negative for the virus, samples of fruit-eating bats are being collected from nearby Perambra, the epicenter of the Nipah virus, to be sent for tests at the National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) in Bhopal.

NiV doesn't show any symptoms when it first infects you.

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