PETALING JAYA: Malaysia has recorded a remarkable increase in the number of dengue cases, in the first three weeks of 2015 as compared to the corresponding period of last year. According to a statement released by the Minister of Health Malaysia Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam, for the first three weeks of 2015, the number of dengue cases reported nationwide was 8,502, an increase of 65% from 5,141 cases reported during the same period last year. "One of the reasons for the rise in the number of cases and deaths is the dengue serotype shift that happened in August last year, where there was a shift in the dominant serotype from DEN 2 to DEN 1," said Subramaniam. "Besides the serotype shift, other factors contributing to the increase in the number of dengue cases were environmental factors, uncontrolled human movements (especially those carrying the virus), the weather and the unhealthy human behaviour. "The increase in the number of cases and deaths by dengue must be taken seriously.