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Den-I: new dengue strain found in Jinnah patient

Updated July 24, 2013

LAHORE, July 23: First case of dengue cerotype-1 (Den-1) has been detected in the provincial capital after tests of a woman who was shifted to the Jinnah Hospital from Thokar Niaz Beg showed the presence of the virus.

Initially some hospital-based investigations declared her a patient of dengue fever and later a lab in Punjab University – Centre for Excellence in Molecular Biology (CEMB) - confirmed presence of Den-1 virus in her blood.

Following the confirmation of the virus, the provincial health authorities have ordered preventive and curative emergent measures all over the province to fight the ‘new menace’.

Quoting some studies, medical professionals said they were expecting resurgence of Den-2 in the second epidemic of the dengue which according to them was ‘likely to surface’ by the end of 2013.

A senior consultant said the Den-1 virus mostly led to hemorrhagic fever, an advanced stage of the disease, which might prove fatal.

“The dengue cerotype-1 was reported for the first time in Punjab since the disease had hit the province in 2011”, Health Director General Tanveer Ahmad told Dawn on Tuesday.

He said the woman, Naheed Bibi, who was diagnosed with the virus, was shifted to the hospital from Thokar Niaz Beg after she complained of persisting high temperature.

He said health officials concerned, including the Dengue Expert Advisory Group (DEAG), had been told to take measures to meet the challenge.

To a question, he said these days India was facing all the four serotypes -- DEN-1, DEN-2, DEN-3 and DEN-4 -- and the number of hemorrhagic fever cases had yet not reached alarming level.

The health DG said so far 11 dengue fever cases had been reported since January. Of them, four were confirmed in Lahore and three in Faisalabad.

A report by Centre of Disease Control (CDC), Georgia, Atlanta, US, had confirmed the presence of dengue serotype-II in 2011 epidemic which particularly hit Punjab capital, claiming lives of over 300 people, besides adversely impacting the health of at least five per cent population of the province. A total of 166 serum specimens of the suspected dengue patients were dispatched to the CDC Georgia, Atlanta.