Reserve "protected" discovery of the virus in the heart of Kenya

August 29, 2013 – 01:54
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A team of American and African researchers identified an area where, thanks to the mosquitoes, the virus (more than eighty types surveyed), going to the animals and to humans

NAIROBI - A real reserve "protected" virus, almost a free zone. Viruses that are spread by mosquitoes then (arboviruses) to animals and human beings, constituting the basis of those epidemics that more or less slowly spread out to many parts of the world. This area has been identified scientists in Kenya in five years of studies and tests that were conducted in different ecological zones of the country: the Savanna grasslands, semi-arid bushes and thorny acacia, mangrove swamps. The research, published in the open access journal Virology Journal, has given rise to this dangerous and vast reservoir of virus, highlighting the need for ongoing surveillance to monitor and act in time against the risk of epidemics. The work of researchers from the United States Army Medical Research Unit, Kenya Medical Research Institute and the International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology in Nairobi was very challenging: were examined over four hundred mosquitoes from eleven sites in Kenya. The analysis led to the identification of 83 virus, including the alphavirus, the flavivirus and orthobunyavirus. Viruses that are an important public health problem especially in East Africa but also in the world, given the recent outbreaks registered in the U.S. and Europe.

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