Detection of Chikungunya Virus in Nepal

Basu Dev Pandey Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal; Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Kathmandu, Nepal; Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan

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Biswas Neupane Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal; Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Kathmandu, Nepal; Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan

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Kishor Pandey Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal; Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Kathmandu, Nepal; Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan

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Mya Myat Ngwe Tun Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal; Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Kathmandu, Nepal; Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan

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Kouichi Morita Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal; Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Kathmandu, Nepal; Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan

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Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is an emerging alphaviral disease and a public health problem in South Asia including Nepal in recent years. In this study, sera were collected from patients presenting with fever, headache, muscular pain, fatigue, and joint pain of both upper and lower extremities. A total of 169 serum samples were tested for CHIKV and dengue virus (DENV) by using Immunoglobulin M (IgM) and Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method during August to November 2013. Results showed that 3.6% and 27.8% samples were positive for CHIKV and DENV IgM positive, respectively. Similarly, results of IgG showed 3.0% samples were positive for CHIKV IgG and 29.0% were for DENV IgG positive. Further, a 50% focal reduction neutralization test (FRNT50) was performed to confirm the presence of CHIKV, which demonstrated that 8.9% of CHIKV IgM and/or IgG ELISA positive possessed neutralizing anti-CHIK antibodies. To our knowledge, this is the first report in which the presence of CHIKV is confirmed in Nepalese patients by FRNT50. Basic scientists and clinicians need to consider CHIKV as a differential diagnosis in febrile Nepalese patients, and policy makers should consider appropriate surveillance and actions for control strategies.

Author Notes

* Address correspondence to Basu Dev Pandey, Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal 9045. E-mail: drbasupandey@gmail.com

Authors' addresses: Basu Dev Pandey, Leprosy Control Division, Department of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Population, Kathmandu, Nepal, E-mail: drbasupandey@gmail.com. Biswas Neupane and Kishor Pandey, Everest International Clinic and Research Center, Virology, Kathmandu, Nepal, E-mails: biswasneupane11@gmail.com and pandey_kishor@hotmail.com. Mya Myat Ngwe Tun and Kouichi Morita, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Virology, Nagasaki, Japan, E-mails: myamyat@tm.nagasaki-u.ac.jp and moritak@nagasaki-u.ac.jp.

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