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Cofepris says the vaccine has undergone testing on over 40,000 patients. (Photo: Taken from Twitter)

Mexico approves first dengue vaccine

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Mexico's federal medical safety agency (Cofepris) said that 32,100 cases of dengue were registered in Mexico in 2014.

Mexican health authorities have approved the first dengue vaccine to gain official acceptance for use against the virus.

Mexico's federal medical safety agency (Cofepris) says the vaccine has undergone testing on over 40,000 patients. It said Wednesday the vaccine's manufacturer had proved its safety and effectiveness.

Cofepris added that in 2014 there were 32,100 cases of dengue in Mexico, 8,668 of them serious, and that treating the disease cost 3.2 billion pesos (US$187.6 million), 2.5% of Mexico's total health budget.

In a separate statement, the Lyon, France-based Sanofi Pasteur identified the vaccine as Dengvaxia.

Mexico said the vaccine is aimed at people aged 9 to 45, in areas where the disease is endemic.

Mosquitoes transmit the dengue fever virus. Symptoms include high fevers and severe muscle and joint pain. There's no specific treatment for dengue. About half the world's population is at risk from the mosquito-borne disease, which sickens about 100 million people every year, mostly in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

(With information from AP)


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