Author Topic: Zika virus.  (Read 2569 times)

SHANDAL

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Zika virus.
« on: February 04, 2016, 05:28:38 AM »
Florida ( USA ) governor declares emergency due to Zika
Florida Gov. Rick Scott has declared a health emergency in four counties of the state because of the Zika virus.


At least nine cases of the mosquito-borne illness have been detected in Florida. Health officials believe all of the cases are from people who contracted the disease while traveling to affected countries.

Scott signed the order Wednesday to cover Miami-Dade, Lee, Hillsborough and Santa Rosa counties.
The Zika virus is linked to brain deformities in babies and is causing concern among public health officials worldwide. The virus is primarily spread through mosquito bites, but investigators had been exploring the possibility it could be sexually transmitted.

U.S. health officials say a person in Texas became infected with Zika through sex in the first case of the illness being transmitted within the United States.


SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2016, 05:33:12 AM »

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2016, 05:41:26 AM »

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2016, 05:23:33 AM »

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2016, 05:34:05 AM »
First Zika pregnancy case in Europe
Spain has confirmed that a pregnant woman has been diagnosed with the Zika virus - the first such case in Europe.


The health ministry said the woman had recently returned from Colombia, where it is believed she was infected.

Zika, which is spreading through the Americas, has been linked to babies being born with underdeveloped brains.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the microcephaly condition, linked to the mosquito-borne virus, a global public health emergency.

In a statement (in Spanish), the health ministry said the pregnant woman was diagnosed as having Zika in the north-eastern Catalonia region.

It did not release the woman's name, saying she was one of seven confirmed cases in Spain.

The ministry stressed that "the diagnosed cases of Zika virus in Spain... don't risk spreading the virus in our country as they are imported cases".

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2016, 05:35:38 AM »
Microcephaly: Why it is not the end of the world


What you need to know Key questions answered about the virus and its spread

Travel advice Countries affected and what you should do

The mosquito behind spread of virus What we know about the insect

Abortion dilemma Laws and practices in Catholic Latin America

In other Zika news:

Brazil says a national mobilisation day will be held on Saturday, during which thousands of soldiers and state employees will work work to eradicate mosquitoes in homes and offices.

The outbreak is discussed by health ministers from 14 South American countries who vow to take action to eliminate it

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos tells the BBC he expects a rise in Zika cases

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2016, 05:37:24 AM »
The WHO expresses fears over the reported sexual transmission of the Zika virus in Texas



Florida Governor Rick Scott declares a public health emergency in four counties with travel-related cases of the virus, while ordering state officials to increase mosquito control efforts in heavily populated locales including Miami and Tampa

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2016, 02:03:01 AM »
In the meantime, here are our best ideas for fighting Zika

That brings us back to the current Zika crisis. On this, the experts I spoke to were mostly in agreement on what should be done.

First, public education. People need to be aware of A. aegypti and its horrible ways and know how to combat it. Wear protective clothing, use insect repellents, and put up screens on windows and doors. Get rid of anything that might create a pool of standing water outside, whether a bucket or Styrofoam cup or whatever else.


The next step would be for governments to launch mosquito control campaigns in earnest. That means treating certain bodies of water with larvicide and organizing cleanup crews to get rid of trash and old tires and other places where water can pool. (See more details here.)

"You have to go back to past successes," says Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine. "In the 1950s, we eradicated Aedes through brute force insecticides, drainage control. The problem is that these campaigns are labor-intensive, they're not cheap, and they're difficult to sustain." Once an outbreak fades, governments lose the political will and the mosquitoes return stronger than ever.

Thomas Scott of UC Davis cautions, however, that it may be tricky to replicate past eradication campaigns. The man who led those earlier mosquito wars, Fred Soper, worked closely with authoritarian governments in Latin America to force inspectors into every home and inspect for breeding sites. That heavy-handedness is harder to pull off in today's democracies. "Plus, Soper didn't have to deal with massive cities of 8 to 10 million people, or all the plastic trash we have now," Scott notes. "So we're dealing with things he didn't have to deal with."

Another key difference: In the 1950s and '60s, countries were spraying lots of DDT, a cheap insecticide that lingered on surfaces for months, making it particularly effective at killing insects. But in the years since, many Aedes mosquitoes have developed resistance to DDT, making the pesticide a less suitable option today. (DDT can also kill birds and other wildlife, which is why the US banned it in 1972.)


Ultimately, beating back Zika is going to be incredibly arduous. "People are reluctant to accept that there is no magic bullet," concludes Uriel Kitron of Emory University. "It's a tedious process, it involves a lot of commitment, it involves community participation."

Sadly, that stuff isn't nearly as fun to write about as GM mosquitoes or futuristic gene drives. But for now, it's the best we've got.

sheemar

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2016, 06:45:14 PM »

SHANDAL

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Re: Zika virus.
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2016, 01:52:36 AM »
Zika Emergence Evokes Memories of Rubella

Doctors say the rampant spread of Zika virus in the Americas evokes parallels to the rubella epidemic in the 1960s that disabled thousands of children in the U.S. and worldwide, prompting many women to seek illegal abortions.

The same trends soon may be unfolding throughout Latin American and the Caribbean where, in the absence of a vaccine or treatment, public health officials in at least 25 countries and territories are working to slow the spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus, which is believed to be linked to a steep rise in microcephaly, a potentially catastrophic birth defect in which babies are born with small craniums and brains. Suspicion also has risen that the virus is linked to a neurological condition called Guillain-Barre syndrome, which can cause paralysis.

"The fear that people have in these countries is similar to the fear we experienced in the early 1960s when rubella was king," says Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. "Mothers were scared to death about contracting rubella in the first trimester of pregnancy, because their child would have an 85 percent chance of developing severe permanent defects of the ears, eyes and heart."

In Brazil, around 4,000 babies are estimated to have been born with microcephaly, and cases are expected to begin to mount in other Zika-affected countries as women infected early in pregnancy give birth. In some Latin American countries with local Zika transmission, public health officials have advised women to delay pregnancy. Some pregnant women are traveling abroad to have their babies.

 

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