Navigation Links
Kenya: Alert As Virus Leaps Over Buffer Zone

The virus causing Rift Valley Fever has outmanoeuvred local and international experts, vaulting over a buffer between North Eastern and Coast provinces to land// in Maragua, Central province, for the first time. This has created fear that the killer bug could be headed for Nairobi.

The buffer was created by the ministry of Livestock Development, with help from World Health Organisation (WHO) and Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO).

It aimed at vaccinating two million animals while maintaining zero contact with livestock from other parts of the country.

Increase dramatically
The jump could see the number of animals to be vaccinated increasing dramatically, and possibly overwhelming available capacity.

Started about three weeks ago, the programme had vaccinated only 120,000 animals by Sunday. The country depends on erratic supply of vaccine from the United States and South Africa, although the virus was first isolated in Kenya and a cure developed by local scientists.

The Director of Veterinary Services, Dr Joseph Musaa, says Kenya should have strategic reserves of the vaccine "because the problem occurs here and is bound to recur."

Locally, the vaccine is developed at the Kenya Veterinary Vaccine Production Institute, Kabete, but the supplies cannot meet the current demand. "It is ironic that we have to import vaccines from countries that acquired the technology from us," he says.

The outbreak is the second most severe since 1930. But this time around, its re-appearance was predicted as early as September.

But the virus met little organized resistance and went ahead to claim over 100 human lives, scores of livestock and wildlife. It is feared the fever could spread to Juba valley in the Sudan, triggering a major food crisis in the region.

What happens next is also predictable, the bug will soon go into hiding -it is not clear where to - but it will come back in three to seven years.

The cycle will continue unless two things happen: pre-emptive measures are made to mitigate human and animal loses, or mutation of the virus - changing genetically and becoming even more virulent. Climate factors could also make it alter its visiting and parasitic habits.

In September, a UN Food and Agricultural Organisation publication quoted the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration warning that rise in temperatures in the region could spark an outbreak of the disease.

By early November, local weathermen had correctly predicted floods and landslides in several parts of the country, including North Eastern province.

"It was too obvious not to see it coming. But no pre-emptive action was taken. We are famous for closing the barn door after the horse has bolted," said the director of Kenya Medical Research Institute (Kemri), Dr Davy Koech, last week. He said there had been enough warning, but requirements such as animal vaccines and awareness programmes were brought in long after the virus had struck.

In candid discussions with top scientists from Kemri and US Centres for Diseases Control, it came out clearly that Africa has to rein in the bug as a joint and urgent concern.

The fever is geographically confined to Africa, except once in 2000 when an outbreak was reported in Saudi Arabia and, subsequently, in Yemen. The source was later traced to East Africa. The fever is generally found in eastern and southern Africa, mainly among livestock keeping communities. The most notable outbreak in Kenya was in 1950-1951, which resulted in the death of an estimated 100,000 sheep.

Exported from Sudan
In 1977, the virus was detected in Egypt, but it was suspected to have been exported there through infected animals from Sudan. It has once afflicted Senegal, in West Africa, following heavy floods. The 1998 outbreak was the most severe in Kenya. It caused 400 human deaths.
Currently, there is no established course of treatment. But the drug ribavirin, an antiviral, has modest success.

The virus causes haemorrhagic fever - just like Marburg and Ebola do - but it is less virulent.

Source: Bio-Bio Technology
SRI
'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. Polio Back in Kenya: WHO
2. Alerts for safety of heart device
3. Exercise Affects Alertness
4. Mumbai Alert: Possibility Of An Epidemic Outbreak
5. Self-Applied Acupressure May Reduce Sleepiness And Increase Alertness During Class Hours
6. Kerala Government is in High Alert for Bird Flu
7. Bird Flu Alert In Jammu And Kashmir
8. Bird Flu Alert Sounded In Tamil Nadu
9. Pakistan On Alert After Cases Of Fatal Fever
10. Europe On High Bird Flu Alert: European Commission
11. Blue Light Keeps A Person Alert
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/9/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... December 09, 2016 , ... ... and Drug Dependence, Inc. (NCADD) is recommending the film Whispering Spirits ... and the District of Columbia as an education tool in the war against teen ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... ... Pierre Hotel in New York, NY, on December 3rd, to benefit Holy Name ... attended the annual event, which raised over $1 million - the largest event ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... Quality Insights beginning January 1, 2017. The name change aligns the entire ... measuring and improving health care quality. , “We are very proud of the ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... pleased to announce that “Natural Language Processing–Enabled and Conventional Data Capture Methods for ... JMIR Medical Informatics . , Results of the comparative usability study demonstrate ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... ... With the increasing demand for dental implants, the National Association of Dental ... dentists and patients about the safety issues related to dental restorations. According to the ... is projected to reach $6.4 billion in 2018 with more than 30 million Americans ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... DIEGO , Dec. 9, 2016 aTyr Pharma, Inc. ... discovery and development of Physiocrine-based therapeutics to address severe, rare diseases, ... at the upcoming BMO Prescriptions for Success Healthcare Conference at the ... on Wednesday, December 14, 2016, at 4:20 p.m. ET. ... ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... , Dec. 9, 2016  Axovant Sciences Ltd. ... biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of dementia, ... from a Phase 2b trial evaluating treatment with ... compared with donepezil plus placebo in people with ... addition of intepirdine to treatment was associated with ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 Australia Glaucoma ... GlobalData,s new report, "Australia Glaucoma Surgery Devices ... on the Australia Glaucoma Surgery Devices market. The ... volume (in units) and average prices (USD) within ... report also provides company shares and distribution shares ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: