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Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2007 Jun;76(6):1189-93.

Seroprevalence of Chikungunya virus infection on Grande Comore Island, union of the Comoros, 2005.

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Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, Nairobi, Kenya; Ministry of Health, Moroni, Comoros.


An outbreak of Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) illness associated with high fever combined with prolonged and severe arthralgias occurred on Grande Comore Island from January through May 2005; 5,202 cases were reported. A seroprevalence study was conducted to define the extent of transmission on the island. We conducted a cross-sectional survey using a multistage sampling technique. A total of 481 households were sampled. In each household, one resident was selected randomly for interview and blood collection. We administered questionnaires and tested 331 sera for CHIKV-specific IgM and IgG antibodies by capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Infection with CHIKV infection (seropositivity) was defined as presence of IgG and/or IgM antibodies to CHIKV. A total of 331 (69%) of 481 survey participants consented to blood collection. Antibodies to CHIKV were detected in 63% of sera; IgM antibodies were found in 60% of specimens and IgG antibodies were detected in 27% of specimens. Extrapolation of the findings to the entire Grande Comore population suggested that nearly 215,000 people were infected with CHIKV during the outbreak. A total of 79% of the seropositive persons were hospitalized or stayed at home in bed for a mean of 6 days (range = 1-30 days); 52% missed work or school for a mean of 7 days (range = 1-40 days). The findings suggest that CHIKV was broadly transmitted during the outbreak with a high attack rate. Although not fatal during this outbreak, CHIKV infection caused significant morbidity and decreased economic productivity.

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