Gajanan N. Sapkal*, Pradeep M. Sawant, Devendra T. Mourya
National Institute of Virology, 20-A, Dr. Ambedkar Road, Pune 411001, India
In recent years, the Chandipura virus (CHPV) has emerged as an encephalitic pathogen and found associated with a number of outbreaks in different parts of India. Children under 15 years of age are most susceptible to natural infection. CHPV is emerging as a significant encephalitis, causing virus in the Indian subcontinent. Severe outbreaks caused by the virus have been reported from several parts of India.
In the recent past, the noticeable association of CHPV with pediatric sporadic encephalitis cases as well as a number of outbreaks in Andhra Pradesh (2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008), Gujarat in (2005, 2009-12) and Vidarbha region of Maharashtra (2007, 2009-12) have been documented. Prevalence and seasonal activity of the virus in these regions are established by NIV through outbreak investigations, sero-survey and diagnosis of the referred clinical specimens. Recently CHPV has been isolated from pools of sand flies collected during outbreak investigations in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. Since its discovery from India and above-mentioned activity of CHPV, it was suspected to be restricted only to India.
However, CHPV has also been isolated from human cases during 1971-72 in Nigeria, and hedgehogs (Atelerix spiculus) during entomological surveillance in Senegal, Africa (1990-96) and recently referred samples from Bhutan and Nepal and from wild toque macaques (Macaca sinica) at Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka during 1993 suggest its circulation in many tropical countries. Based on the limited study on vector related report, it appears that sandflies may be the principle vector.
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