The perspective towards dengue virus ailment

Dengue is the most serious public health problem around the globe, now a day’s researchers are focusing towards understanding that how dengue virus causes ailment.

The perspective towards dengue virus ailmentThere is research that how dengue is damaging the host bodies, researchers are hopeful to diagnose and treat dengue fever in better. Current dengue research also aims to provide better surveillance to limit the effect of dengue transmission. Basically, research regarding Dengue includes about learning how the dengue virus is transmitted and how it infects body cells and causes infection.

Researchers are investigating many aspects of dengue virus like viral biology, including how virus is damaging the body and replicating itself within the host. Dengue pathogenesis is the most important this, the study of the process involves infection in humans.

Scientists are willing to That understand how dengue virus causes damage to the host (human) body in which way the immune system responds to a dengue infection so that they might be able to develop new treatments strategies for the disease control.

E.g. Scientists willing to understand why there is bleeding and leaking vasculature in patients with severe dengue fever. People who are treating such patients they should have basic knowledge about disease pathway and all stages of infection.

Researchers are trying out  and making points that either there is genetic factor involvement which may result in higher rate of infection among the infected individuals. There might be another reason that some people might be susceptible genetically to the ailment. Researchers are studying the dengue virus to understand which factors are responsible for transmission of dengue virus to humans.

Researchers are finding out how the dengue virus replicates itself and the structuration of the virus components, like capsid, outer membrane, and proteins over the envelop.

Parasitologists also want to know — how do the dengue virus avoid getting detected by host immune system. Mutation plays a major role here in this case, parasitologists are examining dengue virus genetic code and its evolution to determine changes in viral genomics.

There are some variations among different viruses that may point out that How the virus gets hidden from immune system. Scientists have this thought in their mind that particular viral sequences are associated with highly severe dengue fever symptoms.

There are certain dengue viral genome sequence variations that may be more deadly  along with  greater potential for initiating epidemics. Such kind of data can help scientists monitor the spread of dengue fever and given instructions to the people that how to get rid of this infection? Dengue research focuses Mainly the vector biology.

Aedes mosquitoes are the focus of study here that how they are transmitting the virus in humans. Vector biology involves the mosquito ecology, data regarding population their genetics. scientists can also perform research dengue transmission patterns.

There are large scale studies of patterns in dengue transmission which can provide sort of information to resist the infection, identify and diagnose dengue infection cases and implement vector control programs.

How to diagnose Dengue Fever?

Patients with severe dengue infection can be treated successfully if they are diagnosed as soon as possible. Researchers are working on improving dengue diagnostics so that individuals infected with dengue can be treated in a great way. There are various diagnostic techniques for Dengue fever.

The ideal diagnostic test should distinguish dengue from other diseases which have similar symptoms and able to differentiate between one dengue serotype from other. An ideal diagnostic Technique could be highly sensitive during early stages of the infection, quick and easy to handle, and should be cost effective

Virus Structure and Methods of Detection

There are number of laboratory methods which are being used to diagnose dengue fever, including detection of the dengue virus directly which involves viral-RNA, viral-antigens and antibodies against the virus in the infected individual’s blood or tissues. The virus can be detected in the blood for only four to five days after the onset of symptoms.

During the early stage of the dengue fever, isolation of the virus, viral-RNA, and viral proteins can be used to diagnose dengue fever. The direct methods include isolation of virus, genomic detection, and detection of antigen.

A virus particle with the RNA genome encapsulated in a hexagonal structure, which is surrounded by another circle. Surface viral proteins are attached to the virus by line like structures.

Direct diagnostic techniques involve virus isolation, genomic detection, and detection of antigen are the more specific ways to diagnose dengue fever than indirect diagnostic technique that detect IgM and IgG antibodies against dengue virus.

The detection of antibodies IgG and IgM) in the blood of patient is an indirect method of detection of dengue fever. This method is commonly used to diagnose dengue in the later stages of the ailment, after the viral levels been decreased.

Antibodies against dengue can be detected in most patients five days after the onset of symptoms, IgG can be detected for several months and even years after an infection from patients’ blood. During first phase of dengue infection, IgM is at higher level, but during a 2nd Phase or later infection, IgM levels are lower.

The levels of IgG actually increase during 2nd phase of  infection. There are major diagnostic markers for detection of dengue virus, viral-RNA and viral-antigens such as the NS1 protein when the patient has viremia (high levels of the dengue virus in patient’s blood). Recently, researchers developed a quick one step test to detect and differentiate among all four dengue serotypes.

It is based on reverse transcription PCR that involves amplification of the viral RNA, and it is a highly sensitive, quick, and cost-effective diagnostic tool. There is another approach that involves diagnosing dengue infections by detecting Nonstructural Protein-1, one of the seven non-structural dengue virus proteins.

NS1 is produced in large amounts during dengue virus replication, and it can be detected as early as the first day as the patient experiences a febrile condition. Scientists are still investigating the mechanisms by which the dengue virus causes disease by focusing on understanding dengue fever pathogenesis, the virus itself, and vector biology.

Researchers also aim to improve diagnostics for patients with dengue so that they can receive effective treatments sooner. In addition, by improving surveillance of dengue cases and mosquito vectors, researchers hope to reduce the effect of dengue epidemics.

By Dr. Hammad Ur Rehman Bajwa

PhD Scholar, Department of Pathobiology, University of Illinois, Urnana-Champaign.