The Federal Government of Nigeria says 115 people from across 21 states have died of Lassa fever since the disease outbreak was confirmed in January this year.
Researchers have uncovered a protein enabling the replication of arenaviruses, pathogens carried by rodents that can infect humans and cause lethal hemorrhagic fevers.
Cases of Lassa fever are on the increase in the Lassa belt (Bong, Nimba, and Grand Bassa Counties).
The current Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria has killed two people in Plateau and Edo with six new confirmed cases from Edo (four), Ondo (one) and Plateau (one).
One key lesson learnt from the investigation was that the confirmed cases were mainly primary cases; hence the needs to focus on measures of breaking the chain of transmission in the animal-man interphase during Lassa fever epidemic preparedness and response.
Since the beginning of January, a total of 112 suspected Lassa fever cases have been reported across Liberia. Eighteen have been confirmed positive by RT-PCR (Nimba-7, Montserrado-3, Bong-4 Margibi-2, and Grand Bassa-2.
Tolbert Nyenswah, director general of the National Public Health Institute of Liberia, says Liberia has reported 73 suspected cases of Lassa fever, with 13 confirmed.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has commenced a nationwide training of healthcare workers on case management, laboratory diagnosis, and prevention and control of Lassa fever.
Liberian authorities confirmed 22 deaths have been recorded across the country following the outbreak of Lassa fever in January.
On May 9, Liberia declared a health emergency following two confirmed deaths from Lassa fever in Margibi.