Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a member of the genus Alphavirus in the family Togaviridae. Chikungunya fever is a mosquito-borne disease first identified in Tanzania in 1953. Since 2004 there have been extensive outbreaks in Africa and Asia, and in 2013 the first cases were identified in the Caribbean, and by September 2014 more than 650,000 cases had been reported in the Americas. Chikungunya fever usually starts 2–4 days after CHIKV infection, with clinical symptoms including high fever, rash, headache, vomiting, myalgia, and severe joint pain.
Because the virus is transmitted by the same mosquitos that transmit Dengue Virus and Zika Virus, and the clinical symptoms of infection with the viruses are also similar, it is important to be able to distinguish diagnostically between the different infections.
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