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Volume 15, Number 1—January 2009

Perspective

Past, Present, and Future of Japanese Encephalitis

Tobias E. ErlangerComments to Author , Svenja Weiss, Jennifer Keiser, Jürg Utzinger, and Karin Wiedenmayer
Author affiliations: Swiss Tropical Institute, Basel, Switzerland

Main Article

Table 1

First reported case and current situation of Japanese encephalitis in the main disease-endemic countries

Country First reported case Total population in rural JE-endemic areas (% of total)* Annual incidence† DALYs in 2002‡ Trend of JE incidence§ Vaccination program† National diagnostic center† References
Australia 1995 NA§ <1 <1¶ Stable Yes Yes (21)
Bangladesh 1977 106,385,000 (75) NA 24,000 Increasing No No (22)
Cambodia 1965# 11,293,000 (80) NA 4,000 Increasing No NA (23)
China 1940 422,532,000 (32) 8,000–10,000 281,000 Decreasing Yes Yes (18)
India 1955 597,542,000 (54) 1,500–4,000 226,000 Increasing No Yes (24)
Indonesia 1960 116,114,000 (52) NA 23,000 Increasing No NA (25)
Japan 1924 43,969,000 (34) <10** <1 Stable Yes Yes (26)
North Korea 1933 8,606,000 (38) NA 6,000 NA NA NA (27)
South Korea 1933 9,194,000 (19) <20 6,000 Stable Yes Yes (27)
Laos 1989 4,643,000 (78) NA 5,000 Increasing No Yes (28)
Malaysia 1952†† 8,854,000 (35) 50–100 2,000 Decreasing Yes Yes (29)
Myanmar 1965 35,077,000 (69) NA 13,000 Increasing No NA (18)
Nepal 1978 4,567,000 (20) 1,000–3,000 5,000 Stable Yes Yes (30)
Papua New Guinea 1995 5,109,000 (87) NA 2,000 NA NA NA (21)
Pakistan 1983 18,536,000 (12) NA 82,000 Increasing NA NA (27)
The Philippines 1950 31,081,000 (37) 10–50 8,000 Stable No Yes (19)
Singapore 1952 0 <1 260 Stable No Yes (31)
Sri Lanka 1968 16,381,000 (79) 100–200 1,000 Decreasing Yes Yes (32)
Thailand 1964 43,364,000 (68) 1,500–2,500 5,000 Decreasing Yes Yes (18,27)
Vietnam 1960 61,729,000 (73) 1,000–3,000 11,000 Stable Yes Yes (27,33)

*Japanese encephalitis (JE)–-endemic areas drawn from map provided in (34); rural population estimates derived from United Nations Urbanization Revisions (2).
†Information retrieved from questionnaires answered by employees from Ministry of Health and World Health Organization country offices.
‡Estimates for 2002 from World Health Organization (20). DALYs, disability-adjusted life years.
§<1% of the country is JE-endemic (Torres Straight islands, Cape York Peninsula). NA, not available.
¶Two deaths since 1995 (35).
#Virus isolated from mosquito (29).
**JE cases are very rare; highest risk is on Okinawa, Miyako, and Ishigaki islands. Between 1995 and 2005, 3 cases were reported (all in 2002) (26).
††First isolated from humans. During World War II, an outbreak that was probably due to JE occurred (31).

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