November 30, 2023


  • A new point-of-care test has been found to be highly sensitive in the rapid diagnosis of Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD).
  • This disease is also known as monkey fever.


  • It is caused by Kyasanur Forest disease Virus (KFDV), which primarily affects humans and monkeys.
  • It was first identified in 1957 in a sick monkey from the Kyasanur Forest in Karnataka. Since then, between 400-500 human cases per year have been reported.
  • Eventually, KFD emerged as a grave public health problem spreading through the entire Western Ghats.


  • In nature, the virus is maintained mainly in hard ticks (Haemaphysalis spinigera), monkeys, rodents and birds.
  • To humans, it may occur after a tick bite or contact with an infected animal (a sick or recently dead monkey).


  • Characterised by chills, frontal headache, body ache, and high fever for five to 12 days with a case fatality rate of 3 to 5%.


  • Diagnosis can be made in the early stage of illness by molecular detection by PCR or virus isolation from blood.
  • Later, serologic testing using Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Serologic Assay (ELISA) can be performed.

Treatment and Prevention:

  • There is no specific treatment for monkey fever.
  • A vaccine (Formalin inactivated KFDV vaccine) does exist for KFD and is used in endemic areas of India.
    • However, it is found that vaccines are not effective once the person is infected with fever.
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