Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Zika Outbreak

As of 2016 the United States has experienced the most widespread outbreak of the Zika Virus in recent memory having spread to over 20 states. It's caused many news outlets to inform and enlighten people whether its how to prevent the virus, where the virus is currently situated in the world, and how the disease is transmitted The disease is similar to the West Nile virus in terms of transmission. Once an infected mosquito has bitten an individual, the individual is mostly likely to get the virus. Recently it has been discovered that the virus can also be transmitted sexually.

The Aedes aegypti mosquito spreads the Zika virus, as well as dengue fever and chikungunya.
Aedes aegypti

Although the Virus has caused a public health emergency of international concern, others believe genetically modifying the mosquito may deem helpful in controlling and perhaps eradicating the mosquito that have the virus. It's a very interesting thought in regards to controlling the mosquito population and its a very different alternative and perhaps a better alternative to pesticides, something the world uses so much of.

1 comment:

  1. When I opened this article, “transmitted sexually” caught my attention because there was a picture of a mosquito and I usually do not associated mosquitoes with sex. It is amazing to see that a small mosquito bite can stay in an individual’s system and can later be spread through having sex. Thousands of people get bit from mosquitoes each day, it makes me wonder if we should watch out for mosquitoes or be more careful with who we have sex with. The interesting part is how they plan on preventing this virus. Genetically modifying sounds like a great way to eliminate this virus, but there is little information on how they plan on doing this. There are millions of mosquitoes in this world and if we modify one mosquito, will this modification be counteractive if it becomes in contact with mosquito who has this virus. On top of mosquito’s dense population, global warming has contributed to warmer summers which leads to more dry weather. Dry weather is the perfect environment for mosquitoes to increase in population size, thus making this a bigger problem than expected. There is so much that has to be discovered in order to reduce this virus, I hope researchers find a solution soon.