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Zika-infected mosquitoes lay Zika-infected eggs


This is the first experimental proof that mosquitoes can transmit Zika to their own offspring

By Rachel Becker

on August 29, 2016 05:01 pm

Mosquito moms can transmit zika virus to their offspring — at least in the lab, a new study shows. If this also happens in nature, the virus might be able to survive in tough mosquito eggs even when cold weather, dry spells, and pesticides kill off the infectious adults.

Mosquitoes can transmit viruses in the same family as Zika, such as yellow fever and dengue, to their offspring — but it wasn’t clear whether this was also true for Zika. So scientists led by Robert Tesh, an epidemiologist at the University of Texas Medical Branch, injected Zika virus into approximately 200 females from two different species of mosquitoes: Aedes aegypti, and Aedes albopictus. None of the A. albopictus offspring tested positive for the virus, but about one in every 290 A. aegypti offspring were infected. They published these results today in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

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