Asia-Pacific News

Singapore's Zika virus cases rise to 151

Singapore confirms 151 total Zika cases

Singapore's Zika virus outbreak spread further, with 36 new cases being reported Thursday.

Three of the new victims, not linked to any existing infection clusters, live in Tagore Avenue, Yishun Street 81 and Harvey Crescent, while a pregnant woman has also tested positive for the virus, according to a joint release by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the National Environment Agency (NEA).

The total number of infected cases in the Southeast Asian city-state currently stands at 151.

The MOH also announced it has completed its look-back exercise, under which samples of 236 patients who had previously shown Zika symptoms were taken. 52 patients tested positive for Zika through this exercise.

The Zika virus is transmitted mainly by Aedes mosquitoes, and has been linked to microcephaly and other birth defects thus putting pregnant women at risk, according to the World Health Organization. The virus can also be spread through sexual transmission.

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A Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) study also showed that Zika virus is linked to the Guillain-Barre syndrome, a disorder in which the immune system attacks the peripheral nervous system.

On Thursday, Malaysia confirmed that its first Zika case was a woman who had traveled to Singapore.

Globally, the Zika virus has spread to nearly 60 countries since last year's outbreak in Brazil, Reuters reported.

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