Polio: Vaccine-derived case in Laos, return of polio to Myanmar - Outbreak News Today | Outbreak News Today Outbreak News Today
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The seventh meeting of the Emergency Committee under the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) covened earlier this month and a major portion was to look at outbreaks of circulating vaccine-derived polioviruses (cVDPV).

Burma map

Myanmar Image/CIA

“During the current polio endgame cVDPVs reflect serious gaps in immunity to poliovirus due to weaknesses in routine immunization coverage in otherwise polio-free countries,” was noted in a World Health Organization statement Thursday.

In Laos, one of the countries reporting an outbreak of circulating vaccine derived poliovirus, a new case has been reported. According to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), one new case of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 1 (cVDPV1) was reported in the past week, from a new province. The case was reported from Hom district bordering Xaysomboune province, and had onset of paralysis on 3 October.

This is the fourth cVDPV1 case reported in Laos since the first case was reported in October. The other three cases were reported in Bolikhanh district of Borkihamxay province.

In Myanmar, local news reports on the return of polio, a vaccine-derived strain, in northern Rakhine State. The Myanmar Times reports on two cases that have been detected in remote villages suggesting that the victims – two five-year-old children – have been infected not by the wild virus, but as a by-product of earlier vaccination campaigns.

This has prompted a mass vaccination campaign in the region.

Polio was declared eradicated in Myanmar in 2014.

The Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) says Vaccine-derived polioviruses (VDPVs) are rare strains of poliovirus that have genetically mutated from the strain contained in the oral polio vaccine.

The oral polio vaccine contains a live, attenuated (weakened) vaccine-virus. When a child is vaccinated, the weakened vaccine-virus replicates in the intestine and enters into the bloodstream, triggering a protective immune response in the child. Like wild poliovirus, the child excretes the vaccine-virus for a period of six to eight weeks. Importantly, as it is excreted, some of the vaccine-virus may no longer be the same as the original vaccine-virus as it has genetically altered during replication. This is called a vaccine-derived poliovirus.

The GPEI says that VDPVs will be seen populations that are seriously under-immunized. In situations like this, there are enough susceptible children for the excreted vaccine-derived polioviruses to begin circulating in the community. If a population is fully immunized against polio, it will be protected against the spread of both wild and vaccine strains of poliovirus

The GPEI reports that in 2015, wild poliovirus transmission is at the lowest levels ever, with fewer cases reported from fewer areas of fewer countries than ever before. In 2015, 57 wild poliovirus cases have been reported from two countries (Pakistan and Afghanistan), compared to 305 cases from nine countries during the same period in 2014.

Robert Herriman is a microbiologist and the Editor-in-Chief of Outbreak News Today and the Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch

Follow @bactiman63



  1. Dorito Reiss says:

    “If a population is fully immunized against polio, it will be protected against the spread of both wild and vaccine strains of poliovirus.”

    EXCEPT that this article states that those affected had already been vaccinated against polio with OPV. So which is it? Are the people being fed lies or are the authorities really this stupid?

  2. […] Source @ Polio: Vaccine-derived case in Laos, return of polio to Myanmar […]

  3. Redpill1 says:

    Countries may be declared Polio free by CDC definition but what is occurring in all countries that have used the Polio vaccines is a rise on cases of NPAFP and now Polio. Example India:

    India was declared Polio free in 2011. In come the WHO and other charity organizations in 2012 and begin giving Polio vaccines. 2012 India was still Polio free but-India in 2012 had an increase in Non Polio Acute Flaccid Paralysis or NPAFP- Clinically indistinguishable from Polio but more difficult to treat and more lethal. 47,500 cases were recorded in 2012 and today the number is over 60,000. The number of cases are consistent to doses given.
    Polio programme: let us declare victory and move on: http://www(dot)issuesinmedicalethics(dot)org/index.php/ijme/article/view/110/1065,
    India Still Reporting Cases of Polio-like Acute Flaccid Paralysis: http://healthimpactnews(dot)com/2015/india-still-reporting-cases-of-polio-like-acute-flaccid-paralysis/. References at bottom of article.

    Polio vaccine has caused a number of “Polio” cases: Polio Vaccines Causing Worldwide Surge in Childhood Paralysis Cases: http://truthstreammedia.com/2015/09/21/polio-vaccines-causing-worldwide-surge-in-childhood-paralysis-cases/.

    Vaccine Infects 10-Month-Old Baby with Polio in India;http://truthstreammedia(dot)com/2013/06/13/indian-baby-contracts-vaccine-derived-polio-virus/.

    78 percent of Pakistani children with polio were given polio vaccines: http://www.naturalnews(dot)com/032587_polio_vaccines_Pakistan.html.
    resources at bottom of article.

    The Polio Vaccine Continues to Spread Polio and Harm People in Poor Countries: http://healthimpactnews(dot)com/2015/the-polio-vaccine-continues-to-spread-polio-and-harm-people-in-poor-countries/.

  4. […] a follow-up to a report two weeks ago, two cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus were confirmed in Myanmar this past week, […]

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