Investigation of measles and rubella outbreaks in Tamil Nadu, India - 2003

Nalini Ramamurty*, Duraisamy Raja, Palani Gunasekaran, Elango Varalakshmi, Sambasivam Mohana, Li Jin

*Corresponding author for this work

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21 Citations (Scopus)


The aims of the present study were to confirm measles outbreaks by detection of measles-specific IgM antibodies, isolation of measles virus, and genetic characterization to document the circulating genotypes in Tamil Nadu. Eight outbreaks were reported from six districts of Tamil Nadu, India during the period Jan-Dec 2003. Blood samples were collected for serology, urine, and throat swabs for virus isolation. Genotypic characterization of measles isolates was based on the sequence of the N gene. All the clinically suspected outbreaks (n = 8) were confirmed by serology; six out of the eight as measles and two as combination of measles and rubella highlighting the need to carry out rubella serology on measles-negative samples. Genetic characterization of three isolates obtained revealed one as genotype D4 and two as D8. Measles genotypes D4 and D8 were found to circulate in three districts of Tamil Nadu. It is necessary to be aware of the circulating genotypes within the geographical area. The information would be valuable to evaluate control measures and identify viral transmission and importation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)508-513
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Medical Virology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2006


  • Genetic characterization of measles virus
  • Measles and rubella outbreak
  • Measles virus


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