United States’ prestigious Stanford University has agreed to assist Uttar Pradesh Government to combat chronic disease like Japanese Encephalitis (JE) and Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES). It was announced by Uttar Pradesh Health Minister Sidharth Nath Singh who had headed high-powered delegation of top state officials to United States. The delegation also met with the officials from US State Department, Department of Commerce and US Agency for International Development (USAID).
Japanese encephalitis (JE)
JE is a mosquito-borne flavivirus. It belongs to the same genus as dengue, yellow fever and West Nile viruses. The first case of JE was documented in 1871 in Japan. JE primarily affects children. Most adults in endemic countries have natural immunity after childhood infection, but individuals of any age may be affected.
It is transmitted by rice field breeding mosquitoes (primarily Culex tritaeniorhynchus group). The mosquitoes transmit JE by feeding on domestic pigs and wild birds infected with the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV). It is not transmitted from person-to-person. Signs and symptoms of JE infections are mild (fever and headache) or without apparent symptoms, but it may result in severe clinical illness.
Severe infection is marked by quick onset, headache, high fever, neck stiffness, disorientation, stupor, occasional convulsions (especially in infants) etc. There is no specific treatment therapy and intensive supportive therapy is indicated for treatment.