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Melioidosis in Myanmar

Department of Medical Research, Yangon, Myanmar
Myanmar Oxford Clinical Research Unit, Yangon, Myanmar
Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health, Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, Old Road Campus, University of Oxford, Oxford OX3 7FZ, UK
Department of Microbiology, Yangon General Hospital, University of Medicine 1, Yangon, Myanmar
Pathology Department, Microbiology Section, North Okkapala General Hospital, University of Medicine 2, Yangon, Myanmar
Shoklo Malaria Research Unit, Mahidol-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Mae Sot 63110, Thailand
Mandalay General Hospital, University of Medicine, Mandalay, Myanmar
Pathology Department, Microbiology section, Thingungyun Hospital, University of Medicine 1, Yangon, Myanmar
Department of Preventive & Social Medicine, Defence Services Medical Academy, Yangon, Myanmar
Lao-Oxford-Mahosot Hospital-Wellcome Trust Research Unit, Microbiology Laboratory, Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, Laos
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT, UK
Medical Action Myanmar, Yangon, Myanmar
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3(1), 28;
Received: 9 February 2018 / Revised: 20 February 2018 / Accepted: 23 February 2018 / Published: 1 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Burden and Challenges of Melioidosis)
PDF [508 KB, uploaded 1 March 2018]


Sporadic cases of melioidosis have been diagnosed in Myanmar since the disease was first described in Yangon in 1911. Published and unpublished cases are summarized here, along with results from environmental and serosurveys. A total of 298 cases have been reported from seven states or regions between 1911 and 2018, with the majority of these occurring before 1949. Findings from soil surveys confirm the presence of Burkholderia pseudomallei in the environment in all three regions examined. The true epidemiology of the disease in Myanmar is unknown. Important factors contributing to the current gaps in knowledge are lack of awareness among clinicians and insufficient laboratory diagnostic capacity in many parts of the country. This is likely to have led to substantial under-reporting. View Full-Text
Keywords: melioidosis; Burkholderia pseudomallei; Myanmar melioidosis; Burkholderia pseudomallei; Myanmar

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Win, M.M.; Ashley, E.A.; Zin, K.N.; Aung, M.T.; Swe, M.M.M.; Ling, C.L.; Nosten, F.; Thein, W.M.; Zaw, N.N.; Aung, M.Y.; Tun, K.M.; Dance, D.A.B.; Smithuis, F.M. Melioidosis in Myanmar. Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2018, 3, 28.

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