Finally, A Vaccine For Dengue?

Finally, A Vaccine For Dengue?
Lançamento do Plano de Ação Integrada de Combate à Dengue e à febre Chinkungunya Agência BrasíliaCraig Cloutier / FlickrCC BY 2.0

A study supported the efficacy of the first dengue vaccine even after participants who received the vaccine were exposed to a different strain of the virus.


In a joint experiment conducted by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), it has been found that those participants who received dengue vaccine showed immunity from genetically modified strains of dengue virus.

The study, which was published in the Science Translational Medicine, comprised of 41 participants of whom 21 received the dengue vaccine and the remaining 20 received the placebo as the control group. The vaccine is currently named as the TV003.

Six months after receiving the treatment, participants from both groups were exposed to a genetically-engineered strain of the virus to test whether the vaccine has provided an immunity to other strains of the virus.

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The results show that the virus did not replicate to those who received the actual vaccine, while those who received the placebo developed common symptoms of dengue fever, such as rashes and decreased levels of white blood cells.

To further test the efficacy of the vaccine, a massive study is underway in Brazil that involves more test subjects.

Dengue virus comes in four types of strains and around 400 million dengue cases are being recorded each year in the world. Data from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that dengue is one of the leading causes of death, especially among children, in the Latin America and Asia.

The virus is spread by an infected female species of Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same mosquito that transmits another dreaded health condition, Zika. Just like Zika, there has been no approved treatment for dengue that are available on the market. But researchers are currently underway to develop vaccines for the virus.

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