Absence of Zika virus among pregnant women in Vietnam in 2008

Trop Dis Travel Med Vaccines. 2023 Mar 1;9(1):4. doi: 10.1186/s40794-023-00189-7.


Background: Despite being first identified in 1947, Zika virus-related outbreaks were first described starting from 2007 culminating with the 2015 Latin American outbreak. Hypotheses indicate that the virus has been circulating in Asia for decades, but reports are scarce.

Methods: We performed serological analysis and screened placental samples isolated in 2008 for the presence of Zika virus from pregnant women in Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam).

Results: None of the placental samples was positive for Zika virus. Four serum samples out of 176 (2.3%) specifically inhibited Zika virus, with variable degrees of cross-reactivity with other flaviviruses. While one of the four samples inhibited only Zika virus, cross-reactivity with other flaviviruses not included in the study could not be ruled out.

Conclusion: Our results support the conclusion that the virus was not present among pregnant women in the Vietnamese largest city during the initial phases of the epidemic wave.

Keywords: Infection; Placenta; Serology; Vietnam; Zika virus.