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Zika Vaccines Can Learn From Dengue

May 24, 2021 • 2:39 pm CDT
(Zika News)

A recent study published by The Lancet found that since 2015, the emergence of epidemic Zika virus transmission has been linked to unparalleled reports of serious neurological disorders and devastating congenital disabilities such as microcephaly and other congenital malformations.

Despite low transmission rates in the past 3 years, the emergence of new Zika outbreaks remains a looming threat.

Of particular concern to health authorities worldwide is the possibility of multiple flavivirus outbreaks, as Zika became endemic in the same regions as dengue viruses.

The great paradox in dengue infections is a well-known example: one previous dengue exposure does not protect subsequent infection by a different serotype. But instead, it increases the risk for the development of severe dengue disease.

This understanding has engendered justified caution and the development of tetravalent dengue vaccines.

As viable Zika and dengue vaccines are made, it becomes crucial to understand how Zika and dengue immune interactions will affect subsequent flavivirus outbreaks and the use of Zika and dengue vaccines, concluded these researchers on May 18, 2021.