Bangladesh confirms first case of Zika virus

Bangladesh confirms its first case of Zika virus belongs 67-year-old man

Photo by: Reuters Archive
Photo by: Reuters Archive

An Aedes aegypti mosquito is seen at the Laboratory of Entomology and Ecology of the Dengue Branch of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in this March 6, 2016 file photo.

Bangladesh confirmed its first Zika virus case on Tuesday, which belongs to a 67-year-old man who has not travelled overseas, Health Ministry officials said.  

Junior Health Minister, Zahid Maleque, said in a statement that the man is from the southeastern port city of Chittagong and added that none of his relatives tested positive for the virus.

According to Mahmudur Rahman, the director of the ministry's Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research, the man had never travelled outside Bangladesh.

"The virus was found in the man as we tested old blood samples of nearly 1,000 people afflicted with fever in 2014 and 2015," Rahman said.

Apart from Bangladesh, South Korea also confirmed its first  case of the Zika virus on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Some cases have been found in Asia, officials in the region have said.

The World Health Organization, on Feb. 1, declared the Zika virus outbreak to be a global public health emergency, citing a "strongly suspected" relationship between the Zika infection in pregnancy and microcephaly.

Zika has not been proven to cause microcephaly in babies, but there is growing evidence that suggests a link.

The condition is defined by unusually small heads that can result in developmental problems.

Brazil has confirmed more than 860 cases of microcephaly and considers most of them to be related to mothers infected with the Zika virus.

Brazil is investigating more than 4,200 additional suspected cases of microcephaly.

TRTWorld, Reuters