As we've discussed previously (see Emerging Microbes & Infect: Growing Genetic Diversity Of Zika Viruses In Latin America), while there are two broad lineages of the Zika virus (African & Asian), researchers have recently split the Asian lineage into two sub-lineages which they dubbed the Oceanian and Latin American lineages.
This relatively recent bifurcation in the Asian lineage allows scientists to determine whether a specific virus originated in Asia or was imported from the Americas.
And just last week (see Singapore MOH: Genetic Analysis Report On Local Zika Virus) the Singapore MOH and A*Star announced that testing revealed the Zika samples taken there were of Asian origin, and not imported from the Americas.It actually gets far more complicated than that when you add in the growing regional genetic diversity within each of these sub-lineages. And as of yet, we don't have hard and fast rules on how to describe these strains.
Today, in a report from the Malaysian MOH, we not only learn of two more confirmed Zika cases (sisters) - one of whom the media reports is pregnant - but we also learn that genetic testing has revealed two different strains in Malaysia.
Strains they identify as of Polynesian and Micronesian (local) origin.
The Health Minister gave a press conference today, reported by Astro Awani news (see here), where he clarified his terms:
Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the strain from the first Zika infection case in Taman Botani in Klang, was the same as the one found in Brazil.
As for the second case in Likas, Sabah, the strain was a local type.
"The virus strain in the first case in Klang might have been 'imported' from Singapore and is what we call a 'French Polynesia' virus, which is a virus from outside, not from here.
"But in the second case in Likas, the virus is the same as the one we've identified in the country before. This is what we call a 'Micronesia' virus.
"This goes to show that there are two types of virus strains lurking among us," he told a special media conference on Zika here today.
First the (machine translated) MOH report, then a media report on planned discussions with the National Fatwa Council on advice to pregnant women.
MINISTER OF HEALTH
Zika LATEST SITUATION IN MALAYSIA
September 14, 2016
Monitoring the Health Ministry from 1 September until 13 September 2016, there were six (6) cases have been reported Zika across the country. All of the infected cases have been added to Zika hospital for close monitoring. Monitoring of the Ministry of Health also found that as many as 79 cases of Zika signs have been reported, but all have a negative test result.
According to a study conducted by Specialist Virology at the Institute for Medical Research (IMR) on the Zika virus The first two cases were positive, the results show it on the Asian lineage, in where the genome sequence of the first cases in Johor resemble French Polynesia while genome sequence in Sabah is the second case resembles the genome sequence of the local (Micronesia).
The Ministry of Health has been conducting prevention activities and vector control in residential areas all cases including the place- place visited by them. This includes eliminating places Aedes breeding, larvasiding, spray fogging and health education to neighbors in the residential area. From 1 September to 13 September 2016, the number of premises have been inspected and activities.
Vector control is as follows:
Inspection Activities and Vector Control
Premises had been inspected 3,543
Premises tested positive for Aedes breeding 43
Premises made larviciding activities 1,956
The premise has done 1,646 thermal spray
The premise has been done spray Ultra Low Volume 6,569
Aktiviti detection (Active Case Detection) were performed on all 25 context and if the context shows symptoms and signs Zika infection, they were referred to hospital for further investigation and treatment.
MOH also monitoring the Zika virus infections through surveillance for laboratory continued by the National Public Health Laboratory (NPHL) and InstituteMedical Research (IMR) in which from June 2015 until 13 September 2016, found that of 828 samples of blood and urine patients who show symptoms of Zika virus have been tested and so far all test results are negative.
At the entrance of the international monitoring of air, land and sea continues. Until 11 September 2016 at 3.17 million visitors from 55 countries were screened.
MOH also upload "Zika Updated Alert" And Administrative Instruction For Monitoring and Management of Infection Zika into the portal MoH http://www.moh.gov.my/index.php/database_stores/store_view_page/10/292.
Information about Zika is also available from the MOH health info http://www.infosihat.gov.my/infosihat. Efforts to address the problem of infection Zika and Dengue happens in this country is the joint responsibility of all parties, whether government, private or NGO, and more importantly, it responsibility.
Meanwhile, The New Straits Times is reporting:
Zika: Health Ministry to meet National Fatwa Council over medical advice for pregnant victims [VIDEO]
By FAZLEENA AZIZ - 14 September 2016
PUTRAJAYA: The Health Ministry will be meeting with the National Fatwa Council next week to discuss on medical advice for pregnant women infected with the Zika virus, said its minister Datuk Seri Dr S.Subramaniam.
Dr Subrmaniam was responding to a question on whether pregnant women infected with Zika would be allowed to undergo an abortion.
“The Cabinet has instructed the ministry to discuss the matter after taking scientific and Islamic perspectives into consideration. “Our stand on abortion is that it is only allowed if there is a risk to the pregnant mothers,” he told a press conference, here today.