The number of dengue virus infections in Brazil has gone up 600% in 2019. Our report from the state of Sergipe looks at why the fight against the illness and its carrier, the tiger mosquito, is so difficult.
“The invasive Aedes species, which is what we are seeing a lot of, can transmit Zika, yellow fever, chikungunya and dengue,”
If a visitor comes to LA with active zika, yellow fever, chikungunya or dengue and is bitten by a local LA Aedes, that mosquito can become ground zero for the spread of those diseases in LA! With modern air travel and global warming, it is inevitable that those diseases get a foothold in LA unless LA has a very active and aggressive vector control system.
Texas health officials today announced the state’s first probable local Zika infection of the year, which also appears to be the first local case reported in the United States for 2017.The patient is a Hildago County resident who had not traveled outside the area or had any other risk factors, the Texas Department of State Health Services (TSDHS) said in a press release. Hildago County, located in the Rio Grande Valley, is in far southern Texas on the border with Mexico.The virus was probably transmitted by a mosquito bite in South Texas some time in the last few months, and lab tests show that the person is no longer at risk of spreading Zika to mosquitoes.In April the TDSHS expanded its recommendations for testing pregnant women and people with Zika infections in six South Texas counties, which led to thousands of tests being conducted and to the identification of the newly identified case.
So far, yellow fever is currently being transmitted by two types of mosquitoes on Brazil, the Haemagogus or Sabethes. If yellow fever is introduced to a major urban center, the virus could jump to the Aedes aegypti mosquito, making human transmission more likely.”There is no evidence of human cases of yellow fever virus infection transmitted by Aedes aegypti, the vector that could sustain urban transmission of yellow fever,” the WHO said in its update.
The two technologies could be “transformational,” said Dan Strickman, a senior program officer at the foundation. The next challenge, however, will be to identify the approaches that work best in combination with existing medical treatments so as to shrink the footprint of the disease over the next ten to fifteen years, Karl Malamud-Roam, manager of Rutgers University’s public health pesticides program, told the Seattle Times.
Finding out how human behavior facilitates the expansion of growth of malaria carrying mosquitoes would cost less but would show that industrial farming and deforestation are the chief facilitators of malaria’s continual comebacks.
That is to say, as humans continue to reshape the state to fit our desires, we are creating the conditions for a mosquito population explosion. To make matters worse, the channel reports that species capable of carrying the West Nile virus and Zika do well in California’s human-made environment. And scientists expect it to only get worse.”Urbanization, driven by human population growth and movement, has been a major driver of environmental change during the last century and is projected to increase substantially in the future across the globe,” the study authors write. “Our results suggest that urbanization is likely to drive additional changes in mosquito communities, including the expansion of habitat for urban mosquitoes.”
The latter is what knocked out Golu Kumar Paswan a week ago. The 18-year-old, who works as a laborer in a manufacturing facility, developed a high fever and pain. The virus has sapped him of all energy, making it impossible for him to go to work.”My company doesn’t pay me when I don’t show up, so I’m losing out on my wages, which I need desperately to pay for my rent in Delhi and to send back to my family in the Uttar Pradesh state,” Paswan said. “Things are really difficult. How am I going to survive?”Worker crunch hits industrial outputIt’s a question that many of Paswan’s fellow migrant workers laid low by the viral illnesses have answered by packing up their bags and leaving for their villages.That has left the over 1,500 small-scale factories in Mayapuri, an industrial hub that relies on the steady supply of cheap labor from the neighboring slums. Everything from car parts, textiles to machinery is produced here. The area has witnessed a 20 percent dip in production and profits because workers have been calling in sick or leaving to go back home.
Yesterday, members of Congress remembered they are obligated to, like, do stuff, when they narrowly avoided a government shutdown by agreeing to allocate $1.1 billion to fight Zika.Initially, the bill was held up thanks to language that would bar funds from Planned Parenthood, since any effort to boost women’s healthcare is akin to slaughtering schoolchildren on national television. (Note that the actual slaughter of schoolchildren fails to prompt any Congressional action.) But yesterday the Senate approved the bill by a vote of 72-26, and later in the day the House of Representatives approved it 342-85, narrowly averting a shutdown that would leave the government without money to operate Friday at midnight.President Obama, who requested $1.9 billion in Zika funding in February, is expected to sign the bill into law by tomorrow. Though an initial iteration of the legislation prohibited funds from going to Planned Parenthood, that language has since been removed. “Women’s health should never be treated like a political football,” Senator Patty Murray, D-Washington, told NPR. “I am glad that Republicans finally agreed to set aside the extreme provisions that would have specifically blocked Planned Parenthood health care providers from accessing critical funding.”
Singapore has reported 215 cases of Zika infections, as scientists in the city-state said the virus strain came from within Asia and was not imported from Brazil.Key points:Scientists say the virus evolved from South-East Asia strain and was not importedMalaysia says it expects the number of local transmissions to growIt is urging residents to adopt preventative measuresThe Ministry of Health and National Environment Agency said in a joint statement on Saturday evening that of the 26 new cases reported on Saturday, 24 were linked to a cluster in the Aljunied district where the country’s first locally-transmitted cases were reported.The statement did not say where the other two cases were from.A week after Singapore reported its first case of locally transmitted Zika infection, local scientists say they have completed genetic sequencing of the virus.”The analysis found that the virus belongs to the Asian lineage and likely evolved from the strain that was already circulating in South-East Asia. The virus from these two patients was not imported from South America,” the statement said.
A pair of studies today probing the complex antibody reactions between Zika and dengue infection have both bad news and good news: that earlier dengue infection can worsen Zika infections, but a certain antibody against dengue can also neutralize Zika virus, raising the possibility of a vaccine target.