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Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2006 Mar;74(3):449-56.

Serotype-specific differences in clinical manifestations of dengue.

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  • 1Departamento de Virología, Centro Nacional de Diagnóstico y Referencia, Ministerio de Salud, Managua, Nicaragua.


Dengue, the most prevalent arthropod-borne viral disease of humans, is caused by four serotypes of dengue virus (DENV 1-4). Although all four DENV serotypes cause a range of illness, defining precisely which clinical characteristics are associated with the distinct serotypes has been elusive. A cross-sectional study was conducted on 984 and 313 hospitalized children with confirmed DENV infections during two time periods, respectively, in the same hospitals in Nicaragua: a 3-year period (1999-2001) when DENV-2 accounted for 96% of the viruses identified, and the 2003 dengue season when DENV-1 predominated (87% of identified serotypes). When the two periods were compared, more shock (OR 1.91, 95% CI 1.35-2.71) and internal hemorrhage (OR 2.05, CI 1.16-3.78) were observed in the period when DENV-2 predominated, whereas increased vascular permeability was associated to a greater degree with the DENV-1 period (OR 2.36, CI 1.80-3.09). Compared with the DENV-2 period, the DENV-1 season was associated with more hospitalized primary dengue cases (OR 3.86, CI 2.72-5.48) and more primary DENV infections with severe manifestations (OR 2.93, CI 2.00-4.28). These findings provide new data to characterize the pathogenic potential of distinct DENV serotypes in human populations.

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