KUCHING: The rabies cases in Serian have genome sequence similar with virus strains originating from Kalimantan and Sulawesi.
Health director-general Datuk Noor Hisham Abdullah said the results were obtained from the Institute for Medical Research (IMR)’s Virology Unit.
He noted that there was a close epidemiological link between the cases in Serian and those in Kalimantan.
“IMR’s virology unit conducted DNA sequencing of the virus isolated from rabies cases in Serian,” he said in a statement today.
He said the virus was shown to have the highest genome sequence similarity with those from Kalimantan and Sulawesi.
Dr Noor Hisham said active case detection (ACD) on dog bites had been conducted in the affected areas in Serian by the local Health Office together with the Sarawak Health Department.
According to him, the activity was carried out at 136 localities and 9,830 houses while 37,285 people were interviewed to record history of dog bites.
“Altogether 368 cases of animal bites were detected in the affected areas in Serian and they have been given treatment.
“Health education on rabies were also given to the residents,” he said. — Bernama