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California children struck by rare, polio-like disease with no known cure

Published on Feb 24, 2014 4:18 PM

WASHINGTON (AFP) - A rare, polio-like syndrome that has no known cure has emerged in a small number of children in California, US researchers said on Sunday.

Five cases of sudden onset paralysis were described by Stanford University experts at the American Academy of Neurology annual meeting in Philadelphia.

"Although poliovirus has been eradicated from most of the globe, other viruses can also injure the spine, leading to a polio-like syndrome," said Stanford neurologist and lead author of the case reports, Keith Van Haren.

"In the past decade, newly identified strains of enterovirus have been linked to polio-like outbreaks among children in Asia and Australia," he said in a statement.

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