Yellow fever kills 7 people in Paraguay

Paraguay experienced a sudden outbreak of yellow fever that didn’t plague the country for more than three decades.

7 people have already died in the town of San Lorenzo, about 12 miles (20 km) from the capital city of Asuncion.

After the authorities confirmed the first cases of yellow fever, the WHO decided to send 2 million vaccines to Paraguay. Brazil has already rendered assistance by sending 1 million vaccines.

Meanwhile there oozed out information about “privately vaccinated politicians”, causing blockades and fires on the streets. But this still remains an allegation.

Yellow fever (also called yellow jack, black vomit or vomito negro, or sometimes American Plague) is an acute viral disease. It is an important cause of hemorrhagic illness in many African and South American countries despite existence of an effective vaccine. The yellow refers to the jaundice symptoms that affect some patients.

The disease is transmitted to humans primarily by mosquitos and entails jaundice and complains of abdominal pain with vomiting. Bleeding can occur from the mouth, nose, eyes, and stomach. Once this happens, blood appears in the vomit and feces. Kidney function deteriorates.

As of 2001, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that yellow fever causes 200,000 illnesses and 30,000 deaths every year in unvaccinated populations.

In 2007, the World Community Grid launched a project where by computer modeling of the yellow fever virus (and related viruses) thousands of small molecules are screened for their potential anti-viral properties in fighting yellow fever. This is the first project to utilize computer simulations in seeking out medicines to directly attack the virus once a person is infected. This is a distributed process project similar to SETI@Home where the general public downloads the World Community Grid agent and the program (along with thousands of other users) screens thousands of molecules while their computer would be otherwise idle. If the user needs to use the computer the program sleeps. There are several different projects running, including a similar one screening for anti-AIDS drugs. The project covering yellow fever is called "Discovering Dengue Drugs – Together." The software and information about the project can be found at World Community Grid web site.