Health officials say they have made an important discovery in the mystery surrounding the deaths of more than 60 children in Cambodia.
The Institut Pasteur in Cambodia tested samples taken from 24 patients and found 15 had tested positive for Enterovirus Type 71.
"These results now give a good explanation to this outbreak," Dr. Philippe Buchy, head of the institute's virology unit, said in an e-mail. "We will get more results hopefully by next Tuesday or Wednesday."
In milder cases, EV71 can cause coldlike symptoms, diarrhea and sores on the hands, feet and mouth, according to the journal Genetic Vaccines and Therapy.
But more severe cases can cause fluid to accumulate on the brain, resulting in polio-like paralysis and death.
There is no effective antiviral treatment for severe EV71 infections, and no vaccine is available.
Adults' well-developed immune systems usually can fend off the virus, but children are vulnerable to it, according to the CDC.FULL STORY