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  • Current Dengue News Concentrator #1 (April 29 - XX) 41 comments
    Apr 29, 2010 6:36 PM | about stocks: NVAX, VICL, SNY, BAX, BDX
    v2

    Explanation:
    I will post Dengue Fever and related articles under this heading.  The top of the instablog will contain a summary of the subject area definitions of terms, and a summary of Dengue vaccine investment plays.

    Much of this review material comes from "The Dengue Update - A CDC Update on a Critical Disease Threat"
    tinyurl.com/23abpdx

    Dengue Fever – A Worldwide Threat:
    Dengue virus infects up to 100 million people each year. Its impact is magnified by the lack of effective antiviral drugs and vaccines. As many as half a million people develop severe dengue disease each year, a very large proportion of whom are children. About 2.5% of those affected die.

    About two fifths of the world's population are now at risk.

    Dengue haemorrhagic fever [DHF] is a leading cause of serious illness and death among children in some Asian countries.


    Causes:
    Dengue fever can be caused by any one of four serotypes of dengue virus: DEN-1, DEN-2, DEN-3 and DEN-4. These viruses are part of the Flavivirus family, which includes West Nile virus and yellow fever virus.

    Infection Vector:
    Dengue virus is spread by mosquitoes, and is most common during the rainy seasons throughout the world's tropical and subtropical regions.

    Symptoms of Classic Dengue Fever:
    Symptoms of classic dengue fever include high fever (up to 105 degrees F), severe headache and/or pain behind the eyes,
    severe joint and muscle pain, nausea and vomiting. A few days after fever onset, a rash often develops over most of the body and lasts for one to two days. The rash can reappear several days later. These symptoms typically begin within a week after infection, and usually resolve without treatment.

    Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever:
    Dengue hemorrhagic fever is a more serious form of disease which can include all of the symptoms of classic dengue fever plus noticeable damage to blood vessels and lymph vessels, bleeding from the nose and gums, and conspicuous bruising under the skin. Dengue hemorrhagic fever can lead to death. The most severe form of dengue disease is dengue shock syndrome, which includes all of the symptoms of classic dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever, plus leaking of blood outside of blood vessels, extensive bleeding, and shock caused by extremely low blood pressure. Dengue shock syndrome most often occurs in children infected for a second time (with a different serotype of dengue), and can be fatal.

    Dengue disease, including classic dengue, dengue hemorrhagic fever and dengue shock syndrome, is increasing in both incidence and severity throughout many tropical regions of the world, especially in Africa, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia.

    Transfusion-associated dengue risk:
    Not everyone infected with dengue will have symptoms and, consequently, the virus can be transmitted via blood transfusion or organ transplants. In Puerto Rico, about 1 in 600 blood donations was found to contain virus during the 2007 epidemic, 1 in 1300 during a non-outbreak year.  Sensitive, inexpensive tests are not yet available for screening donated blood either in endemic areas or in parts of the mainland most likely to have donors returning from endemic places.

    Travel-associated dengue among U.S. residents:
    Americans frequently travel for business or pleasure to dengue endemic places in Asia and Latin America, and every year hundreds return infected with dengue.  We know that travel-related dengue cases are underreported. Beginning in 2010, dengue will be a nationally reportable disease in the United States.

    How travellers can reduce the risk of getting Dengue fever:
    Travellers can reduce their risk of getting dengue fever by protecting themselves from mosquito bites. The mosquitoes that spread dengue usually bite at dusk and dawn but may bite at any time during the day, especially indoors, in shady areas, or when the weather is cloudy.

    Follow the steps below to protect against mosquito bites:

    Where possible, stay in hotels or resorts that are well screened or air conditioned and that take measures to reduce the mosquito population. If the hotel is not well screened, sleep under bed nets to prevent mosquito bites.

    When outdoors or in a building that is not well screened, use insect repellent on uncovered skin. If sunscreen is needed, apply before insect repellent.

    Look for a repellent that contains one of the following active ingredients: DEET, picaridin (KBR 3023), Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus/PMD, or IR3535. Always follow the instructions on the label when you use the repellent.

    In general, repellents protect longer against mosquito bites when they have a higher concentration (percentage) of any of these active ingredients. However, concentrations above 50% do not offer a marked increase in protection time. Products with less than 10% of an active ingredient may offer only limited protection, often no longer than 1-2 hours.

    Wear loose, long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors.
    o For greater protection, clothing may also be sprayed with repellent containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent. (Remember: don't use permethrin on skin.)

    Brief Overview of Categories of Dengue Investment Plays:

    I - Vaccines / Prevention
        1) Production Method / Capacity plays (NASDAQ:NVAX) (NASDAQ:VICL) (NYSE:SNY)
        2) Injection / Vaccine support services (syringes etc.) (NYSE:BAX) (NYSE:BDX) (OTCPK:BJCT)

    (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)









    Disclosure: NVAX, VICL
    Themes: Dengue Fever Stocks: NVAX, VICL, SNY, BAX, BDX
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  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (Nov 6) U.S. Navy and U.S. Army to Develop Dengue DNA Vaccine Formulated With Vical's Vaxfectin Adjuvant

     

    Vical (VICL) today announced that the Naval Medical
    Research Center (NMRC) plans to conduct preclinical and Phase 1 evaluation of a dengue DNA vaccine formulated with the
    company's Vaxfectin adjuvant and delivered with the BiojectorÑÄ 2000 needle-free injection system [Bioject Medical Technologies Inc. (BJCT)]. In support of the program, Vical will manufacture the vaccine and the adjuvant under a $1.3 million contract, and will provide regulatory and clinical expertise. Testing will be performed at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research under sponsorship of the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity.

     

    "Dengue is the scourge of the tropics today, just as yellow fever was before the widespread use of an effective vaccine," said Vijay B. Samant, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vical. "Dengue presents a serious threat to almost half the world's population living in or traveling to endemic regions.

     

    The U.S. government's program, intended to develop a vaccine to protect troops being deployed to dengue-endemic regions, is among the most advanced. The potential for a dengue DNA vaccine has been demonstrated in animal models, and initial safety testing has been completed in humans.

     

    Vical developed a tetravalent dengue vaccine for all four serotypes of dengue, and formulated with the VaxfectinÑÄ adjuvant. Nonhuman primate immunogenicity and challenge data with the tetravalent DNA vaccine, formulated with or without the VaxfectinÑÄ adjuvant and delivered by needle-free injection using the BiojectorÑÄ 2000 (BJCT), were promising.
    tinyurl.com/27wja6k
    29 Apr 2010, 06:39 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (March 26) PAHO Documents Increase In Dengue Fever Cases In Latin America

     

    Countries in Latin America "are bracing this year for a particularly virulent outbreak of the mosquito-borne tropical disease" known as dengue fever, after reports show an increase in the number of cases recorded this year, Agence France-Presse reports. "The Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) said so far it has logged some 146,000 cases in the first three months of the year, of which 79 have been fatal. This time last year there were some 79,000 cases of dengue reported, with 26 deaths," the news service writes.

     

    "We have a (level of) epidemic that never before existed during normal seasons," explained Violeta Menjivar, the deputy health minister in El Salvador, where "last month the government declared a national state of emergency for dengue," AFP notes. Menjivar said, "The entire Central American region is affected."

     

    Symptoms of dengue "include high temperatures and muscle aches" and "in extreme cases" can result in "haemorrhaging and death," AFP writes. There is no vaccine.

     

    "According to the PAHO, the countries likely to be hardest hit by this year's outbreak are Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela," AFP continues. "In Brazil, the number of dengue cases was up by 109 percent over last year, with 21 deaths. In Colombia, 22 people have died, or around 28,000 stricken with the illness. In Venezuela meanwhile, there have been 16,000 cases so far, said health officials who said the number of cases appears to be rising year after year."

     

    AFP reports on how climatic factors, like El Nino, may be contributing to the increase in dengue fever cases and how health officials are working to try to halt the spread of the disease (3/24).

     

    This information was reprinted from globalhealth.kff.org with kind permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report, search the archives and sign up for email delivery at globalhealth.kff.org.

     

    tinyurl.com/25a3myl om/articles/183653.php
    29 Apr 2010, 06:41 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (April 3) Dengue fever cases up 72% so far this year in Brazil
    Via Xinhua: Dengue fever cases up 72% so far this year in Brazil. Excerpt:

     

    The number of dengue fever cases in Brazil from January to March 6 reached 227,109, up 72 percent from the cases registered in the same period last year, the country's Health Ministry said on Thursday.

     

    According to the ministry, 184,574 of those cases, or 86.5 percent of the total, were registered in the same states in which most dengue fever cases occurred last year: Rondonia and Acre in the northern region; Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul and Goias in the midwestern region; and Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo in the southeastern region.

     

    About 35.4 percent of the cases are reported in six cities: Campo Grande in Mato Grosso do Sul state, Goiania and Aparecida de Goiania in Goias state, Rio Branco in Acre state, Porto Velho in Rondonia state and Belo Horizonte in Minas Gerais state.

     

    However, the number of deaths from the disease dropped 23 percent from 2009 to 65, while the grave cases, such as hemorrhagic dengue fever, also decreased 81.2 percent from the 2,097 cases in the same period last year.

     

    tinyurl.com/2c7b8bd
    29 Apr 2010, 06:42 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (April 23) Sanofi Pasteur Global Dengue Vaccine Clinical Program Expanded To Singapore And Vietnam

     

    Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of sanofi-aventis Group (SNY), announced today the start of clinical studies of its investigational tetravalent dengue vaccine in Singapore and Vietnam.

     

    With these studies, sanofi pasteur is expanding its global dengue vaccine clinical study program in Asia where trials are already ongoing in Thailand and the Philippines. These studies are aimed at advancing the development of a novel vaccine for the prevention of dengue in the Asia-Pacific region. "Dengue has emerged as a serious public health problem in Asia-Pacific in the last decades. There are 1.8 billion people in the region at risk of dengue fever," said Chusak Prasittisuk, Coordinator Communicable Diseases Control at the World Health Organization South East- Asia Region. "WHO is committed to fostering vaccine development for the control of dengue disease in Asia." Currently, there is no specific treatment available against dengue fever, which is the most widespread tropical disease after malaria. Sanofi Pasteur is collaborating with the Communicable Disease Center in Singapore and the Pasteur Institute in Vietnam to conduct these clinical studies in children and adults.

     

    "Controlling the mosquitoes that transmit dengue is necessary but not sufficient to fight against the disease. A safe and effective vaccine has been long awaited to prevent dengue epidemics," said Professor Leo Yee Sin, director of the Communicable Disease Center in Singapore. "Clinical studies in Singapore are critical steps to advance the development of a vaccine for the prevention of dengue in Asia. We are happy to contribute to scientific research that would benefit the entire region."

     

    "Fighting against dengue is a main public health priority in Vietnam. About 100,000 people are infected each year, mostly children," said Dr. Tran Ngoc Huu, director of Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City. "The Pasteur Institute is committed to supporting clinical studies for a dengue vaccine that would ultimately benefit children in Vietnam."

     

    About Sanofi Aventis
    Sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. (NYSE: SNY).

     

    Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of sanofi-aventis Group, provided more than 1.6 billion doses of vaccine in 2008, making it possible to immunize more than 500 million people across the globe. A world leader in the vaccine industry, Sanofi Pasteur offers the broadest range of vaccines protecting against 20 infectious diseases. The company's heritage, to create vaccines that protect life, dates back more than a century. Sanofi Pasteur is the largest company entirely dedicated to vaccines. Every day, the company invests more than EUR 1 million in research and development.

     

    tinyurl.com/2e99elr
    29 Apr 2010, 06:45 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (April 29) Peru: "If dengue cases increase, health centers will collapse" FROM H5N1

     

    One week after the announcement of 18 probable dengue cases in Talara, the head of the Epidemiology Unit of Carlos Vivanco Health Center reported 30 cases now; for this reason he warns that if the situation continues, health centers will collapse.

     

    Delfín Bances said that the 48 probable dengue cases registered in Talara so far have been referred to the laboratory of the Health Subregion for final testing. However, he added that of the samples sent, one has been discarded and five tested negative; the rest remain to be tested.

     

    tinyurl.com/2cozbef
    29 Apr 2010, 06:49 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
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    User - Good post! A significant rise and spread in cases is finally registering at health organizations. We really need this to be taken care of before December 21, 2012 if we are all going to get together in the land of the Mayans.
    29 Apr 2010, 07:03 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » Thank you Mark, it is a big problem. I noticed the frequency of reports on Dengue were sharply increasing as I was trolling the news media for information on Swine Flu. When I saw those numbers and the fact that NVAX and VICL were involved, I saw the potential for a new revenue stream…

     

    Maya prefers Cigars for use as a mosquito repellent… :>)
    29 Apr 2010, 07:28 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
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    The symptoms are not the same, but it does remind me of malaria a bit. I was infected with two strains of malaria simultaneously, Vivax and Falciprium. Vivax is recurring but Falciprium is supposed to hit you once and not return. But since they were delivered together, or least were in my blood stream at the same time, both continued to plague me for a little over a year. I had a total of seven episodes. My temperature was usually over the 106 that the glass thermometers of the day could record, so they would strip me down, pack me in ice and rub alcohol over my body with big sponges while the fans blew over me. Each relapse lasted about five days, during which I received aspirin and was fed intravenously, with the exception of the last two episodes when I was actually given the proper treatment. The reason is simple: Army SOP required that blood smears be taken every four hours, exactly. The illness was very regular for me and came in recurring cycles of 2 hours of very high temps, 2 hours of cold chills, and 8 hours of nausea and all the other symptoms, then it started all over again.

     

    The reason for the cycles, as I understand it, was that the virus stays almost dormant in the liver until the attack. Then it come out into the blood stream with a vengeance. As it comes out, the fever spikes, as it begins to recede back to the liver the chills hit, then the body is limp with exhaustion and nausea, joints feeling like sandpaper is inside, headaches, diarrhea, etc. During the recession/dormant period, as the virus sits in the liver, blood smears won't detect anything. Of course, the corpsmen would never take samples while my fever was elevated (when they could actually find something), so I just had to get better on my own.

     

    At any rate, it wasn't any fun. But at least I have first-hand experience of what people are going through when they suffer from such diseases. It'll be a better world when we find a way to immunize people from such diseases.
    29 Apr 2010, 08:04 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » Jsss... that's terrible Mark... I hope it does not come back at you again.
    30 Apr 2010, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
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    User: Another brilliant concentrator! Well done.

     

    Mark: Sorry to hear what you have endured. You're stronger now for it.

     

    I'll ask my Honduran archeologist pal what he knows. I also have an upcoming physical in about three weeks. My doctor is this region's advisor to the CDC about rare diseases. I'll see what he knows.

     

    I already own some Sanofi; glad to see they're pioneering a vaccine. The increasing number of deaths and contractions are alarming and worrisome.

     

    Is it okay for a grown man to hug a rat?
    29 Apr 2010, 09:17 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
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    By the way. In my novel I have the king's workers out after storms throwing split open capiscum peppers into the larger puddles, and the smaller ones get swept out. Capsicum infused water is also tossed up into the trees, as mosquitoes can and do breed in the crooks.

     

    Had no idea this concept worked when I wrote it into my book a while back, but as things seem to go with my novel, apparently pepper infused water actually does kill the skeeters. "Just don't drink the water!"
    29 Apr 2010, 09:45 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (April 30) Fighting the dengue menace
    From Chen Qi

     

    With the rising number in dengue cases, everyone is expected to do their part in curbing the menace. The latest company to join the fight against dengue is Reckitt Benckiser (RBGPF), the manufacturer of Shieldtox. They launched a joint anti-dengue initiative with the Health Ministry. Deputy Health Minister Datuk Rosnah said the number of dengue cases was alarming.

     

    tinyurl.com/27bvztu
    30 Apr 2010, 03:11 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
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    FYI: No dengue fever in Copan. Phew!
    30 Apr 2010, 03:14 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (April 29) ReliefWeb has published Americas: Dengue Outbreak (as of 22 Apr 2010).

     

    Summary: To date, the countries of the Region have reported a total of 344,346 case of dengue, of which 7,838 are severe dengue (2.3%). They report 144 deaths, with a regional fatality rate of 1.84%.

     

    tinyurl.com/72z2h
    30 Apr 2010, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
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    I can't help myself. I have to tell a humorous story about my experiences with malaria. BTW, I'm afraid I got two of the cycles mixed up; the chills always proceeded the higher fever.

     

    Anyway, I had just finished one of those sessions of high fever where the medical folks had stripped me naked, packed me in ice and had wiped me down with alcohol with fans blowing on me to bring down my body temperature. They had wheeled away the fans and cart with alcohol and sponges but had left me lying there still naked.

     

    Suddenly, the door to the hospital opened and in walked Skip Young, actor who had played the part of Wally on "Father Knows Best." Along with him were three young women all of whom were very attractive; one was an actress, another was a musician who sang and played the guitar for us, and the third was a devastatingly beautiful model. For some reason, the model came right up to my bed and asked what was wrong. I explained that I had malaria and what they had done to break my fever. She asked a corpsman if it was contagious and then asked me if she could sit on my bed and chat. The corpsman brought over a clean towel which she sat on to keep her clothes from getting wet. I was still naked. We had a nice, long chat. She stayed with me the whole time as the others wandered around from bed to bed.

     

    A couple of months later I was regaining my strength in a hopital in Japan, having had another bout with malaria. I was surrounded by several other patients who, like me, were all on the mend and no longer restricted to their beds. When suddenly, the doors to the ward opened wide and who should walk in on their way back to the U.S. after an extended journey throughout the hospitals housing sick and wounded soldiers? You guessed it: Skip Young and his three beautiful companions. The model spotted me immediately and came right over to my bed greeting me by name. I responded in kind admitting how surprised I was that she remembered my name, lete alon recognized me. Her response was perfect. She said that it really surprised her as well since, as far as she could remember, this was the first time she'd ever seen me when I wasn't naked. She immediately changed the subject and we all had a great chat together. I never mentioned to the other patients about our previous meeting.

     

    It is amazing how an incident like that affects people. Suddenly, I was very popular and even the cute nurse/dietician started spending a lot more time at my bedside. I must admit I enjoyed the increased attention, but have never been able to understand why people responded the way they did.
    30 Apr 2010, 04:55 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
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    Terrific story, Mark! Though I'm having a little trouble with the imagery.

     

    Thanks for taking time to relate it.
    30 Apr 2010, 05:06 PM Reply Like
  • hjarten
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    I'm going to jump in here because I have a particular aversion to mosquito bites and live down here in Oaxaca de Juarez.

     

    I did a little research about effective repellents and supposedly mosquitoes have their own aversion to people who have a high amount of the B vitamin, thiamine, in their diets. The food that I found had the highest amount of thiamine: Wheat Germ. I went out an bought a kilo of it.
    1 May 2010, 11:27 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (May 3) Mosquitoes inherit DEET resistance
    The indifference of some mosquitoes to a common insect repellent is due to an easily inherited genetic trait that can be rapidly evolved by later generations.

     

    By selective breeding, James Logan and colleagues at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, UK, created strains of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in which half of the females do not respond to DEET — a powerful insect repellent.

     

    "That there might actually be a gene lurking in the background in mosquitoes that causes DEET resistance is the single most surprising result," says Leslie Vosshall, who was not involved with the study and who investigates the neural and genetic basis of odour perception in mosquitoes at the Rockefeller University in New York City. "This hasn't really been reported before."
    crofsblogs.typepad.com.../
    5 May 2010, 02:29 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (May 5) Mexico: Cancún faces dengue outbreak
    Via El Universal - Reported in H5N1
    the secretariat of health has announced a sanitary alert and called on the general public to take part in the struggle against this disease, which is viral and contracted through the bite of Aedes aegypti mosquito, according to Saúl Badillo Perry, chief of health services in the state.
    tinyurl.com/264wak6
    5 May 2010, 02:29 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (May 11) Brazil: Record number of dengue deaths in São Paulo
    From: H5N1

     

    The state of São Paulo in 2010 has set a record for number of dengue deaths. There have been at least 64 since January, according to a survey done by Folha and the prefectures.

     

    The number is the largest since dengue cases began to be recorded--in 1990--and represent almost double the previous record: 35 dead in 2007.

     

    crofsblogs.typepad.com.../
    11 May 2010, 12:49 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (May 21) Dengue Fever Hits Key West
    From: Chen QI
    More than two dozen cases of locally-acquired dengue fever have hit the resort town of Key West, Fl., in the past nine months, officials from the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention said.

     

    Although not the first cases of home-grown dengue in the U.S., or even in Florida, the outbreak highlights the need for physician vigilance regarding this and other formerly exotic tropical diseases, the CDC said in the May 21 issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. tinyurl.com/nu24ks
    21 May 2010, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (June 22) No Area of East Jakarta Free from Dengue Fever
    From: BERITAJAKARTA.COM

     

    It seems that the efforts of East Jakarta government to combat dengue fever have not run optimally. The sluggish outcome is clearly indicated by the absence of urban village categorized as green zone, or the area free from dengue fever

     

    East Jakarta Health Agency reveals that during this year there have been 4,622 dengue fever cases recorded, with none of the total 65 urban villages in the municipality declared as green zone; while the red zone covers 32 urban villages and yellow zone includes the rest of 33 urban villages.

     

    ( June 22)Dengue fever spreads all over Venezuela
    From: Via El Universal

     

    Dengue epidemic in Venezuela seems to be out of control. In 2010, and until June 5, 41,573 cases have been reported nationwide, more than double compared to 2009.

     

    Dengue epidemic has been declared in all the Venezuelan states.
    The 22nd Epidemiological Bulletin issued by the Ministry of Health, which has not been released yet, shows new figures and reports that in the 22nd week, from May 30 to June 5, there were 3,399 patients affected with dengue fever. tinyurl.com/36nauby
    22 Jun 2010, 09:01 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
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    User - Great work! Thanks for staying on top of this story that just keeps slipping through the media cracks and not finding its way to the front page. I skimmed through the thread and noticed that Sanofi is working on a vaccine. Have I missed others? Isn't this something that could be ramped up by Novavax?
    22 Jun 2010, 10:40 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » Hi HT, It does appear to have been missed by the mainstream press. That might change because there were more than two dozen cases of locally acquired dengue fever reported in Key West Florida in 2010. It should be a natural for the Everglades, and the marshy regions in the Gulf, particularly if the Gulf warms up.

     

    I ran into dengue while working on the Swine Flu Concentrator. In the PR piece announcing the joint venture of (NVAX) with Cadila Pharmaceuticals in India, dengue fever and chikungunya fever were specifically mentioned as vaccine development targets. I never heard of them, so I nosed around a bit and was shocked to discover that dengue and particularly dengue haemorrhagic fever are significant adult and child killers in major regions of the world.

     

    If a vaccine can be generated, it should have significant health benefits, and of course significant revenue potential. Sanofi (SNY) started work on a dengue vaccine in the early 90s. They announced a more targeted approach in late 2010 for the areas of Mexico, Colombia, Honduras, and Puerto Rico.

     

    In a recent study published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, Sanofi reported that all 66 subjects enrolled in a trial of its dengue fever vaccine were protected from the disease after receiving three injections over 15 months. And many were protected in just two shots . Sanofi says the results "paved the way for ongoing and future large-scale efficacy trials of our candidate." So they have a production vaccine candidate.

     

    They also recently started production on a $477 million vaccine plant in France, which will pump out massive quantities of the vaccine when it is eventually approved. The plant is a chicken egg based production plant. The company hopes to see the shot approved by 2015. tinyurl.com/ykphfgo

     

    Sanofi says their Dengue vaccine could generate sales of at least 1 billion euros a year as the tropical disease is spreading and putting two fifths of the world's population at risk, according to the World Health Organization [WHO]. tinyurl.com/2drofpa

     

    And of course, the first article in the Dengue news concentrator points out that the US armed forces are working with (VICL) to produce a vaccine against dengue fever.

     

    My crystal ball:
    The big advantage of NVAX and VICL is their rapid low cost production abilities and that has to be a threat to Sanofi that has years of R&D, a half billion sunk into an egg production facility, and a billion euros a year in projected revenues to protect. Sanofi and other chicken egg vaccine production companies are not likely going to sit on their hands while rapid low cost production companies eat their lunch. They either have to develop their own rapid low cost production technology and facilities, or they will need to acquire it. Right now the market cap on NVAX is 222M and VICL is 178M. Sanofi has 5.85B in cash! The longer these dinosaur chicken egg vaccine production companies wait, the bigger the price tag.

     

    I think NVAX and VICL are acquisition targets for the big dinosaur chicken egg production vaccine companies like SNY. I no longer trade NVAX and VICL, now I buy on the dips.
    23 Jun 2010, 11:30 AM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
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    User - I think that is a great strategy. Plan for the inevitable and position accordingly. Thanks for the tip.
    23 Jun 2010, 02:02 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
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    Despite this being the rainy season down here, I still have yet to experience a single mosquito bite. That's over a month, now. Nada!
    7 Jul 2010, 09:58 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » Good, but don't let your guard down.
    13 Jul 2010, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (July 8) Over 744,000 dengue cases reported in Brazil
    From: H5N1 - Crawford Kilian

     

    Brazil has recorded a total of 744,194 cases of dengue in the first five months of 2010. Of those, 737,756 are classic dengue and 6,438 are hemorrhagic, with 321 deaths.

     

    Preliminary data from the Ministry of Health reported today show that the number of patients with classic dengue are an increase of 120.05 percent compared to the same period in 2009, when 335,265 cases were recorded.

     

    As well, the statistics--which to be final still depend on investigation to confirm the diagnoses--indicate that the 321 deaths represent 5 percent of the 6,438 Brazilians who have contracted hemorrhagic dengue.

     

    This percentage, the report says, is five times the limit established by the World Health Organization. tinyurl.com/72z2h

     

    ______________________...
    (July 13) Dominican Medical College asks for declaration of dengue emergency
    From: H5N1 - Crawford Kilian

     

    The Dominican Medical College this Tuesday surveyed the dengue situation and asked that the authorities declare a national emergency.

     

    According to official statistics, 4,591 dengue cases have been reported so far this year. Nevertheless, the DMC believes the number of cases is larger; the total is closer to 7,000. Clemente Terrero, an expert in dengue and infectious diseases, says it is an alarming situation. tinyurl.com/23mmyoo
    13 Jul 2010, 03:30 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
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    It's a bit difficult for me to write this, but those who read this column should know.

     

    Currently, in Honduras, there have been over 17,000 cases of reported dengue fever. Given how many rural areas there are, this number is likely low. So lets say it's 20,000 cases nationwide, and the country has ~ 7,000,000 citizens. This figures to about 1 case for every 350 people in this country. I don't remember the total death count, but it is in the hundreds.

     

    I don't like those odds.

     

    All districts in this country our on red alert. That's why this whole town got sprayed a little more than a week ago.

     

    The mosquito that delivers dengue I've often seen. It's about a half inch long and has a white stripe down its back. When in attack mode, it lowers its head. Typically, it bites in the afternoon. But it can bite at other times of the night and day.

     

    If you're traveling this year to where there may be dengue, I highly recommend that you remember what this insect looks like.

     

    One death here in Copan, so far.

     

    Tomorrow, I've been invited up to my advsor's home for lunch, for some real honest burritoes, that will also be served to his workers, who will be clearing, hacking back the landscape near his home.

     

    Hopefully, by 2012, this bug will be routed out, or, even better, a stock I own, Sanofi Aventis, will have come up with their vaccine.

     

    For the first time on this trip, I'm wearing blue jeans out for dinner, rather than shorts.
    20 Jul 2010, 09:19 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Good move Maya.... Its not woth the risk... I also own SNY.
    21 Jul 2010, 09:45 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9597) | Send Message
     
    Dengue fever spreading in Key West; speculation that it will spread into the Gulf Coast, just when CDC maybe dhutting down its dengue fever branch due to lack of financing.

     

    www.nytimes.com/2010/0...

     

    Several more cases I'm aware of here in Copan.
    24 Jul 2010, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • Mark Bern, CFA
    , contributor
    Comments (4769) | Send Message
     
    We just got back from Florida last night. I am still busy going through mail, email, and assorted other things that I've fallen behind on while on vacation. If this thing is in Key West and spreading (as seems to be the case)', it does seem likely that the U.S. Gulf coast will get hit. It would probably spread up through Florida and across the South from east to west. It would probably stop somewhere in Texas because of the dry climate in the western portion of the state, I suspect. I am assuming that this type of mosquito does best in humid, wet, warm climates. If so, I wouldn't rule out the spread up into the Mid-Atlantic states, Midwest and some of the Plains states. If CDC doesn't respond quickly we could have a real problem on our hands by next summer, IMHO.
    30 Jul 2010, 05:11 PM Reply Like
  • hjarten
    , contributor
    Comments (38) | Send Message
     
    Stumbled on this today (Ebay):
    "Mosquito Repel Ointment

     

    Joel Coats, an Iowa State entomologist, began investigating the idea of using catnip oil as a mosquito repellent five years ago with Chris Peterson, a former graduate student.

     

    The researchers found that catnip oil repels mosquitoes significantly better than the compound used in most commercial bug repellents.
    Nepetalactone, the primary active ingredient in catnip oil, was recently patented by ISU.

     

    Researchers report that nepetalactone, the essential oil in catnip that gives the plant its characteristic odor, is about ten times more effective at repelling mosquitoes than DEET — the compound used in most commercial insect repellents.

     

    The finding was reported today at the 222nd national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society, by the same Iowa State University research group that two years ago discovered that catnip also repels cockroaches."
    10 Sep 2010, 05:14 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
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    Author’s reply » (September 13) Delhi’s Richest Areas Hit By Dengue as City Prepares for Games. From: Bloomberg by Mehul Srivastava

     

    The tree-lined neighbourhoods where New Delhi’s executives and entrepreneurs live have become prime breeding grounds for a deadly scourge. A dengue outbreak in the city has been concentrated in areas with rooftop tanks, lotus ponds and flowerbeds as mosquitoes lay their eggs in the standing water, doctors say.

     

    India’s health ministry confirmed 1,438 cases of dengue in a city more commonly afflicted by diseases endemic to the poor such as malaria, tuberculosis and diarrhea. The outbreak may be fuelled by the city’s $4.6 billion preparations for next month’s Commonwealth Games, as the heaviest monsoon in 15 years leaves pools of water at construction sites.

     

    Sandeep Budhiraja, a doctor at the city’s Max Institute of Medicine. “I’ve treated at least five CEOs this week alone.” Budhiraja and other doctors say the health ministry’s number of cases likely was too low. He said he has seen 1,500 cases in his hospital alone since July. “And this is just the beginning of September,” he said. “Just wait for a few weeks.”

     

    Sanofi-Aventis (SNY), based in Paris, is leading an effort begun by U.S. scientists in the 1940s to develop a vaccine capable of protecting against the four types of dengue. The medicine is in the second of three stages of human studies that regulators usually require. The French drug maker said last year it may seek regulatory approval as early as 2015.
    tinyurl.com/38graht
    13 Sep 2010, 04:09 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9597) | Send Message
     
    Honduras continues to fight dengue. Heamorrhagic cases up a whopping 1,850% over 2009:

     

    www.hondurasweekly.com...
    30 Sep 2010, 05:54 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Commonwealth Games: Indian bowls official contracts dengue fever

     

    An official with the Indian lawn bowls squad has contracted dengue fever – the first person associated with the Commonwealth Games to contract the mosquito-borne disease, which has been a source of concern over athletes' health Ruptu Gogoi was staying in the athletes' village, in New Delhi, when he was taken to hospital yesterday.

     

    New Delhi has been hit by an outbreak of dengue fever because of the extended monsoon season. The outbreak has been made worse by the ongoing construction work, which has left hundreds of holes filled with rain, creating breeding grounds for mosquitos.
    About 3,500 cases of dengue fever have been reported in New Delhi this year, and seven of the afflicted have died, according to the Press Trust of India.

     

    The outbreak is believed to have prompted the withdrawal of scores of top athletes from the games and was one of the factors that led to fears over the past fortnight that the event might have to be cancelled. tinyurl.com/2edrqzd
    3 Oct 2010, 09:44 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » (June 6, 2012) Insight: Dengue vaccine in sight, after 70 years.
    From: Reuters, by Ben Hirschler

     

    Sanofi (SNY), the Paris-based firm hopes for positive results in September from a key trial among children in Thailand that would set it on course to market a Dengue vaccin shot in 2015 which would prevent an estimated 100 million cases of dengue infection each year. Of 20,000 annual deaths, many are of children.

     

    For Sanofi, which has invested 350 million euros ($440 million) in a new French factory to make the three-dose vaccine, it could mean a billion euros in yearly sales as half the world is exposed to the disease, notably in fast-expanding tropical cities from Rio and Mexico to Manila and Mumbai.

     

    In the past 50 years there has been a thirty-fold jump in Dengue cases. The World Health Organisation officially puts infections at 50 to 100 million a year, though many experts think this assessment from the 1990s badly under-estimates the disease. Most patients survive but it is estimated to kill about 20,000 every year, many of these children less able to fight it off.

     

    Sanofi seems closest to offering a viable treatment. And, it promises to be the commercial blockbuster the French firm needs to refresh a portfolio weakened by expiring patents. Its estimate of over 1 billion euros in annual sales - Sanofi's 2011 turnover was 33.4 billion euros - assumes that it is added to routine immunization schedules in Latin America and Asia and is also adopted by travelers from farther afield and by military medics in the United States and Europe.

     

    Meeting that sales potential, while getting the vaccine to hundreds of millions who need it across the tropics, will require a careful balancing act on pricing and supply of a product that has yet to be given a commercial brand name.

     

    Orin Levine, executive director of the International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, says the new vaccine is a potential breakthrough but warned its roll-out may not be straightforward.
    First up, the vaccine needs to be given in three installments over the course of a year in order to counter the threat from four different types of dengue virus, none of which confers immunity for the others.

     

    "There are going to be some challenges," says Levine. "There's really good economic potential from this vaccine but I think it may take a ramp-up of three to five years."

     

    SANOFI'S BET
    In an ideal world, healthcare experts would like a single-dose or, at most, a two-dose vaccine for mass immunization. A simpler regimen would also be better for travelers, although Pascal Barollier of Sanofi Pasteur, Sanofi's vaccine arm, says many users will be people making regular trips to see families in Latin America or Asia with time to plan ahead. The military, too, often has lead time for troop movements.

     

    Sanofi's Gamble:
    In any case, Sanofi is putting its money where its mouth is by spending 350 million euros on a new dengue vaccine factory near Lyon, which is already in test production. It is a substantial gamble, since Sanofi will only learn whether the vaccine really works when it analyses data from a first study of its efficacy on 4,000 Thai children. Results from that clinical study, in what is known as the Phase IIb of the international standard three-stage process of assessment, are expected in the third quarter - most likely September. They will also be presented for scientific scrutiny at the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in Atlanta in November.

     

    If the data is good, Sanofi will file for market approval in countries where dengue is endemic like Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Mexico in 2013, suggesting a regulatory green light in 2014 and commercial launch in early 2015.
    Submissions in other countries and for the travelers market would follow in 2014 and 2015.

     

    LOOKING GOOD
    Early tests have shown a balanced immune response against all four dengue types and Duane Gubler of the Duke-N.U.S. Graduate Medical School, who has researched dengue for four decades, is optimistic. "Everything they've done so far looks very good," he says. "I think it will be a much better vaccine than malaria."

     

    He expects Sanofi's vaccine will show an efficacy rate of at least 75 to 80 percent, well above the 50 percent or so seen with GSK's malaria shot, which faces the added technical problem of fighting a complex parasite rather than a virus.
    The efficacy rate refers to the reduction in the prevalence of subsequent infection among those vaccinated.

     

    Globalization has also brought cases of dengue into southern Europe and the United States, particularly Texas and Florida, although Gubler believes higher living standards mean it is not likely to take off in these regions.

     

    Sanofi is not ready to set a price before it sees the full clinical trial results and has a clearer sense of vaccine yields at its factory. But the drugmaker will embrace "tiered pricing" to make the product affordable, Barollier at the company said.
    That has not stopped the guessing. "I would expect, for middle-income countries, they would be looking at prices similar to those of other new vaccines - for example HPV (human papillomavirus), pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines - which sell for $15 to $70 per course in countries like Brazil, South Africa, Venezuela and Thailand," said IVAC's Levine.
    Setting the price will be a test for Sanofi Chief Executive Chris Viehbacher. He reckons his vaccine is about five years ahead of any others and he knows he has a major opportunity to boost his company's reputation by getting the roll-out right.

     

    http://tinyurl.com/dxa...
    ------
    I think it's unusual for a company to set up manufacturing facilities before a drug is approved.
    6 Jun 2012, 01:15 PM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » (July 26, 2012) Early analysis from the world's first ever efficacy trial of a vaccine against dengue fever shows promising results. In a study involving 4,000 children in Thailand, the vaccine appeared to prevent infection by three of the four circulating strains of the virus and showed an excellent safety profile, its French drug maker Sanofi (SNY) told the press on Wednesday.

     

    Dengue, a mosquito-borne infection found in tropical and sub-tropical regions, has risen dramatically around the world in recent decades, mostly in urban and semi-urban areas. It is also spreading geographically: a recent outbreak in Florida shows that dengue is now reaching continental USA outside the endemic areas of Hawaii and Puerto Rico.There are currently 50 to 100 million people infected every year, and over 40% of the world's population, that is over 2.5 billion people, are estimated to be at risk, says the World Health Organization (WHO).
    26 Jul 2012, 11:02 PM Reply Like
  • doubleguns
    , contributor
    Comments (7887) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/tb0kz2

     

    I thought you might want this here too.

     

    Current out breaks of Dengue fever world wide.
    27 Jul 2012, 06:41 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Thanks Guns.
    27 Jul 2012, 07:17 AM Reply Like
  • FocalPoint Analytics
    , contributor
    Comments (5803) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » (November 6, 2012) As Dengue Fever Sweeps India, a Slow Response Stirs Experts’ Fears. From: The New York Times, By GARDINER HARRIS

     

    NEW DELHI — An epidemic of dengue fever in India is fostering a growing sense of alarm even as government officials here have publicly refused to acknowledge the scope of a problem that experts say is threatening hundreds of millions of people, not just in India but around the world.

     

    India has become the focal point for a mosquito-borne plague that is sweeping the globe. Reported in just a handful of countries in the 1950s, dengue (pronounced DEN-gay) is now endemic in half the world’s nations.
    “The global dengue problem is far worse than most people know, and it keeps getting worse,” said Dr. Raman Velayudhan, the World Health Organization’s lead dengue coordinator.

     

    Officials say that 30,002 people in India had been sickened with dengue fever through October, a 59 percent jump from the 18,860 recorded for all of 2011. But the real number of Indians who get dengue fever annually is in the millions, several experts said.

     

    “I’d conservatively estimate that there are 37 million dengue infections occurring every year in India, and maybe 227,500 hospitalizations,” said Dr. Scott Halstead, a tropical disease expert focused on dengue research.

     

    In about 1 percent of cases, dengue advances to a life-threatening cascade of immune responses known as hemorrhagic or shock dengue.
    This potentially mortal condition generally happens only after a second dengue infection. There are four strains of the dengue virus, and infection with a second strain can fool the immune system, allowing the virus to replicate. When the body finally realizes its mistake, it floods the system with so many immune attackers that they are poisonous. Such patients must be provided intravenous fluids and round-the-clock care to avoid death.

     

    On Oct. 9, Puerto Rico’s Health Department declared a dengue epidemic after at least six people died and nearly 5,000 people were sickened. http://tinyurl.com/bfp...
    9 Nov 2012, 05:04 AM Reply Like
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