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Detection of Zika Virus Infection in Myanmar

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  • 1 Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan;
  • 2 Virology Research Division, Department of Medical Research, Pyin Oo Lwin, Myanmar;
  • 3 Department of Pathology, University of Medicine-1, Yangon, Myanmar;
  • 4 Research and Biotechnology Division, St. Luke’s Medical Center, Quezon City, Philippines

Zika virus (ZIKV), an emerging mosquito-borne flavivirus, causes a dengue-like infection that has recently caught global attention. The infection, which also includes some birth defects, has been documented in the Americas, Pacific Islands, and some parts of Africa and Asia. There are no published reports on local ZIKV transmission in Myanmar. In this study, a total of 462 serum samples from patients and asymptomatic persons were collected in Myanmar from 2004 to 2017. They were analyzed for ZIKV infection by immunoglobulin M capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), immunoglobulin G indirect ELISA, neutralization test, real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and conventional PCR. Our study confirmed ZIKV infection in 4.9% of patients with clinical dengue symptoms and in 8.6% of persons who were asymptomatic. This is the first report on ZIKV infection in Myanmar and it suggests the occurrence of ZIKV infection in two geographically distinct sites in this country since at least 2006.

Author Notes

Address correspondence to Mya Myat Ngwe Tun, Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, 1-12-4 Sakamoto, Nagasaki 852-8523, Japan. E-mail: myamyat@tm.nagasaki-u.ac.jp

Financial support: This work was supported by the Japan Initiative for Global Research Network on Infectious Diseases; Japan–United States Cooperative Medical Science Program from Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED); and Joint Usage/Research Center on Tropical Disease, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University.

Authors’ addresses: Mya Myat Ngwe Tun, Shingo Inoue, Meng Ling Moi, Daisuke Hayasaka, Futoshi Hasebe, and Kouichi Morita, Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan, E-mails: myamyat@tm.nagasaki-u.ac.jp, pampanga@nagasaki-u.ac.jp, sherry@nagasaki-u.ac.jp, hayasaka@nagasaki-u.ac.jp, rainbow@nagasaki-u.ac.jp, and moritak@nagasaki-u.ac.jp. Aung Kyaw Kyaw and Aung Min Soe, Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan, and Virology Research Division, Department of Medical Research, Pyin Oo Lwin, Myanmar, E-mails: akkyawdmr@gmail.com and dr.aungminnsoe@gmail.com. Saw Wut Hmone, Department of Pathology, University of Medicine-1, Yangon, Myanmar, E-mail: sawwuthmone@gmail.com. Corazon C. Buerano, Department of Virology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan, and Research and Biotechnology Division, St. Luke’s Medical Center, Quezon City, Philippines, E-mail: ccbuerano@hotmail.com. Hlaing Myat Thu and Kyaw Zin Thant, Virology Research Division, Department of Medical Research, Pyin Oo Lwin, Myanmar, E-mails: hmyatthu28@gmail.com and drkz.thant@googlemail.com.

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