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Melioidosis in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic

Lao-Oxford-Mahosot Hospital-Wellcome Trust Research Unit, Microbiology Laboratory, Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, Laos
Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health, Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, Old Road Campus, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX3 7FZ, UK
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, WC1E 7HT, UK
National Centre for Laboratory and Epidemiology, Vientiane, Laos
Microbiology Laboratory, Khammouan Provincial Hospital, Thakhek, Laos
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3(1), 21;
Received: 29 January 2018 / Revised: 13 February 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 19 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Burden and Challenges of Melioidosis)
PDF [610 KB, uploaded 24 February 2018]


Melioidosis is clearly highly endemic in Laos, although the disease has only been diagnosed regularly in humans (1359 cases) since 1999, and only a single animal case has been microbiologically confirmed. Burkholderia pseudomallei is extensively and abundantly present in soil and surface water in central and southern Laos, but the true distribution of the disease across the country remains to be determined. Surveillance is almost non-existent and diagnostic microbiology services are not yet well established, whilst awareness of melioidosis is low amongst policy-makers, healthcare providers, and the public. It is hoped that this situation will improve over the next decade as the country rapidly develops, especially as this is likely to be accompanied by a further increase in the prevalence of diabetes, meaning that more people in this predominantly agricultural population will be at risk of contracting melioidosis. View Full-Text
Keywords: melioidosis; Burkholderia pseudomallei; Laos; Lao PDR melioidosis; Burkholderia pseudomallei; Laos; Lao PDR

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Dance, D.A.; Luangraj, M.; Rattanavong, S.; Sithivong, N.; Vongnalaysane, O.; Vongsouvath, M.; Newton, P.N. Melioidosis in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3, 21.

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