Three people have tested positive to the Marburg virus in Kabale district. The Kabale district director of health services Dr. Patrick Tusiime confirmed that tests carried out by Uganda Virus Research Insititute (UVRI) Entebbe on Thursday had turned out positive.
The Marburg virus was last reported in Uganda in 2008. According to the World Health Organization, Marburg is a severe and highly fatal disease caused by a virus from the same family as the one that causes Ebola hemorrhagic fever.
According to the global health body, the illness caused by Marburg virus begins abruptly, with severe headache and severe malaise.
Case fatality rates have varied greatly, from 25 percent in the initial laboratory-associated outbreak in 1967, to more than 80 percent in the Democratic Republic of Congo from 1998-2000, to even higher in the outbreak that began in Angola in late 2004.
Marburg virus was first noticed and described during small epidemics in the German cities of Marburg and Frankfurt and the Yugoslavian capital Belgrade in the 1960s. Workers were accidentally exposed to tissues of infected grivets (Chlorocebus aethiops) at the city’s former main industrial plant, the Behringwerke, then part of Hoechst, and today of CSL Behring. During these outbreaks, 31 people became infected and seven of them died.