Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Cases of Chikungunya increase in Brazil

Brazil’s Health Ministry reports a significant increase in cases of chikungunya. Last year, the total number of cases was 8.528. So far, there have been 134,910 confirmed cases of chikungunya in the country.

Chikungunya is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, a common viral vector that also spreads dengue fever and Zika. Symptoms of chikungunya include fatigue, fever, nausea, joint pain or swelling.

At the 2016 meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, researchers also reported that mosquitoes can transmit Zika and chikungunya viruses simultaneously. This means that mosquitoes can infect an individual with both viruses through a single bite. Colorado State University researchers reported that “their saliva is clearly testing positive for both, which could mean that people bitten by this type of mosquito could be infected by both viruses at once. We need to understand more about what happens in both mosquitoes and people when all of these viruses are circulating in close proximity.”

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