Challenges in reducing dengue burden; diagnostics, control measures and vaccines

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Dengue is a major public health concern worldwide, with the number of infections increasing globally. The illness imposes the greatest economic and human burden on developing countries that have limited resources to deal with the scale of the problem. No cure for dengue exists; treatment is limited to rehydration therapy, and with vector control strategies proving to be relatively ineffective, a vaccine is an urgent priority. Despite the numerous challenges encountered in the development of a dengue vaccine, several vaccine candidates have shown promise in clinical development and it is believed that a vaccination program would be at least as cost-effective as current vector control programs. The lead candidate vaccine is a tetravalent, live attenuated, recombinant vaccine, which is currently in Phase III clinical trials. Vaccine introduction is a complex process that requires consideration and is discussed here. This review discusses the epidemiology, burden and pathogenesis of dengue, as well as the vaccine candidates currently in clinical development.

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