Source: New York Times
By: McNeil Jr., Donald G.
A new vaccine that protects against Japanese encephalitis or brain fever, which takes the lives of up to 15,000 children annually and disables thousands more, has been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO). As many as 4 billion people from southern Russia to the Pacific Islands are at risk of contracting the incurable disease, which is caused by a mosquito-transmitted virus. The vaccine is manufactured by China National Biotec Group, and it was administered to 200 million children in China for years before receiving WHO approval. In October, India launched its first locally produced version of the vaccine.