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Pathology of West Nile Virus Infection

Dr Sampurna Roy MD




West Nile Virus is an important arthropod borne flavivirus which usually causes a mild infection called West Nile Fever in human and horses.

This virus, originally isolated from the West Nile Province of Uganda in 1937, has since been recovered from many other African countries and from Israel.

West Nile Virus is maintained naturally in wild birds and transmitted by Culex mosquitoes.

Clinical disease in man is a febrile illness with headache, myalgia, maculopapular rash, lymphadenopathy and leucopenia.

West Nile Virus may develop acute neurologic disease,  which can be severe or even fatal, including West Nile Virus meningitis, encephalitis, and an irreversible acute flaccid paralysis or poliomyelitis-like syndrome.

(The Neuropathology of West Nile Virus)

Encephalitis is usually rare.

West Nile virus also occurs in India.

The Tamilnad strain of West Nile virus was isolated in 1955 from Culex vishnui mosquitoes collected from near Vellore, but it has not been shown to be clinically important here.


Further reading:

Susceptibility to West Nile Virus Infection

Characterization of West Nile virus (WNV) isolates from Assam, India: Insights into the circulating WNV in northeastern India

West Nile Virus Documented in Indonesia from Acute Febrile Illness Specimens.

Differential induction of CCL5 by pathogenic and nonpathogenic strains of West Nile virus in brain endothelial cells and astrocytes

Characteristics of Antibody Responses in West Nile Virus-Seropositive Blood Donors

Immune Markers Associated with Host Susceptibility to Infection with West Nile Virus



Dr Sampurna Roy  MD

Consultant  Histopathologist (Kolkata - India)






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