Chapter 7 : Epidemic Emergence of Chikungunya Virus: Options for Control of an Enzootic Virus

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This chapter provides an examination of the factors influencing recent outbreaks of (CHIKV), and presents options for control to provide an understanding of how previously ‘‘unknown’’ viruses can rapidly become significant public health threats. Around the turn of the millennium, some epidemic activity was detected in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, with concurrent outbreaks occurring in Indonesia. These small outbreaks demonstrated that the virus had not gone extinct and still had epidemic potential. However, the magnitude of these outbreaks simply provided no preparedness for the scope of the outbreaks that were soon to erupt in eastern Kenya. Larval surveys indicated that at least 11 different species were present; three of these species (, , and ) had previously been shown to be competent vectors in either field or laboratory studies. There are a number of factors that may have played a role in either the number of cases or the spread or notoriety of the outbreaks, but undoubtedly, the reason for the epidemic is that a combination of all these factors came together in precisely the right manner to allow the outbreak to occur. The vast majority of vaccine development has been initiated by researchers at the Walter Reed research facilities. With the current awareness that CHIKV could rapidly move into novel ecologies and perhaps establish enzootic cycles, it is hoped that recent vaccine development efforts will be quickly successful.

Citation: Powers A. 2008. Epidemic Emergence of Chikungunya Virus: Options for Control of an Enzootic Virus, p 125-136. In Scheld W, Hammer S, Hughes J (ed), Emerging Infections 8. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815592.ch7
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Figure 1.

Global distribution of recent outbreaks of CHIKV.

Citation: Powers A. 2008. Epidemic Emergence of Chikungunya Virus: Options for Control of an Enzootic Virus, p 125-136. In Scheld W, Hammer S, Hughes J (ed), Emerging Infections 8. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815592.ch7
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