A high-level team from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) arrived in Kerala’s Kozhikode on Monday after the deadly Nipah virus claimed six lives in the district. Neighbours reportedly told medical officials that they saw the three members of the family – brothers Swalih and Sabith and their paternal aunt Mariyam – consuming what looked like fruits picked up from a compound in which they are building a home on Sunday. Following the deaths, Union minister J P Nadda directed the team to visit the district to assist the state government. A nursing assistant, Lini, who had treated the deceased, died today morning. However, doctors are yet to confirm if she had contracted the virus, which spreads through bats.
What is Nipah Virus?
Nipah Virus is an emerging infectious disease that broke out in Malaysia and Singapore in 1998 and 1999. It first appeared in domestic pigs and has been found among several species of domestic animals including dogs, cats, goats, horses and sheep. The infection is also known to affect human beings. The organism which causes Nipah Virus encephalitis is an RNA or Ribonucleic acid virus of the family Paramyxoviridae, genus Henipavirus, and is closely related to Hendra virus. Read here for more information.
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