ABUJA, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- The death toll from the latest round of Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria has risen to 103, with a case fatality rate of 17.6 percent, the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) said Tuesday.

The latest case fatality rate is lower than the 21.1 percent recorded in the same period in 2019, health authorities said in a statement.

Lassa fever is reportedly transmitted when saliva, urine and excreta of rats come into contact with humans. In some cases, it has similar symptoms as malaria.

Since the onset of the outbreak in January, at least 26 states in Nigeria, including its economic hub Lagos, have been affected by the disease.

Recent epidemiological data show that Lassa fever usually occurs in the country during the dry season between January and April.