Tuesday, October 25, 2016

New Mosquito-Borne Virus from South American Jungles

First it was ZIKA, then Chikungunya, now a virus known as mayaro is emerging from the South American jungles with a vengeance.  The mayaro virus has been known to scientists and physicians for over sixty years, yet it is a relatively unstudied virus; similar to the case of ZIKA, in which discovery and advancement came about due to an increase in the virus’s prevalence and virulence.  Mayaro is following a similar trend with outbreaks increasing into the 100,000’s including the first cases in Haiti.  This virus is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes, however, mosquitoes are not actually the reservoir for the virus, the virus actually replicates and survives in the populations of primates inhabiting the same jungles that mosquitoes and humans both interact with. Symptoms being comparable to Chikungunya with joint pains, chills, fever, and a rash we could be seeing a potential third player in emerging mosquito-borne viruses.


-Ethan Wentworth

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