1 dengue strain prevalent, experts caution against mosquito breeding | Delhi News

New Delhi: This year, different strains of the dengue virus have been detected across India. While in many states, there are two strains present, in Delhi, the serotype DENV-2 has been determined to be prevalent.
“So far, across India and predominantly in the southern states, we are seeing the presence of all the four strains of dengue. West Bengal and Orissa too have reported two strains this time. Other states too have two strains. In Delhi, it is again the serotype 2 so far, but there are chances of a new strain emerging if conditions favour mosquito breeding,” said a government official on Wednesday.
Last year, there were both serotypes 1 and 2 in the city. But cases are higher this year. Till September 12, the city has recorded 295 dengue cases. There were 1,117 cases in the same period in 2017, with the figure falling to 243 in 2018. In 2019 and 2020, there were, respectively, 171 and 131 cases. Last year, there were 158 till September 12.
“If the same strain emerges, the chances of a high number of dengue cases are low because of immunity. But heavy rain and humidity in September can create ideal conditions for mosquito breeding, because of which the number of cases could rise and new strains may emerge,” said Dr Ashutosh Biswas, former professor of medicine at AIIMS and currently director of AIIMS, Bhubaneswar.
The dengue serotype 2 is considered the strongest of the strains. “Some states such as Gujarat and Karnataka always have more cases of dengue. In Delhi, the infection figure came down after 2015,” noted Biswas.
Though dengue fatality has been low in the recent few years, the risk cannot be completely discounted. Biswas said an individual was at a higher risk of infection for a second time when new strains emerged and could develop serious symptoms.
“There are four strains of dengue,” Biswas explained. “If a new strain attacks the human system, serious symptoms are possible. But the same strain is unlikely to affect the same person again. Dengue is not contagious or air borne and the best way to avoid it is by keeping the surrounding free of stagnant water to prevent mosquitoes breeding.”

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