Brazil’s health ministry recently announced its plan to breed genetically modified mosquitoes to stop the spread of dengue fever. According to news reports, scientists are focusing intensely on mosquito control because there is currently no vaccine to protect against dengue.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently announced its development of a new diagnostic test to detect the presence of the dengue virus.
Sri Lanka is one of the latest countries to experience an alarming rise in dengue cases. Recent news out of the country has been filled with stories of dengue prevention efforts and updates on the rapid spread of the disease.

Dengue outbreaks occur in countries throughout the world on an all too frequent basis. One of the latest countries to experience an outbreak of the disease is the Philippines.

Tyler Sharp, an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer at CDC’s Dengue Breach, shared his experience as a member of the response team in an interesting two-part blog series entitled, “Real-life Contagion: Governments unite to fight dengue outbreak in Marshall Islands.” (The series was published in December 2011 shortly after the Hollywood thriller Contagion was released. The movie documented the spread of a virus and the attempts of public health officials to contain the disease. )

Last month, the Dengue Vaccine Initiative began posting daily questions and answers on its Twitter page as part of a new series called Dengue Basics.

If you are planning to travel abroad this month or in the months ahead, it is important to understand the health risks of the country you will be visiting. More than 125 million international tourists visit dengue endemic countries annually and are therefore at risk of infection, according to the World Tourism Organization of the United Nations.
Since there are no drugs available to prevent or treat dengue infection, creating awareness about the disease is an essential preventative measure that can be carried out by doctors and nurses.

By Dr. Dagna Constenla, Director of Economics & Financing at the International Vaccine Access Center at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

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