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Study Shows Extent of Brain Damage From Zika Infections

           

Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are seen inside Oxitec laboratory in Campinas, Brazil, February 2, 2016.
REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker/File Photo

CLICK HERE - STUDY - Radiology - Congenital Brain Abnormalities and Zika Virus: What the Radiologist Can Expect to See Prenatally and Postnatally

reuters.com - Reporting by Julie Steenhuysen; Editing by Dan Grebler - August 23, 2016

A report released on Tuesday shows in graphic detail the kind of damage Zika infections can do to the developing brain - damage that goes well beyond the devastating birth defect known as microcephaly, in which the baby's head is smaller than normal.

The current Zika outbreak was first detected last year in Brazil, where the virus has been linked to more than 1,800 cases of microcephaly, which can cause severe developmental problems.

Prior research has shown the Zika virus attacks neural progenitor cells - a type of stem cell that develops into different types of nerve or brain cells.

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The Potential Zika Threat to Adult Brain Cells

           

Ueslei Marcelino / Reuters

CLICK HERE - RESEARCH - Zika Virus Infects Neural Progenitors in the Adult Mouse Brain and Alters Proliferation

New research has found evidence the mosquito-borne virus can adversely affect cells necessary for replenishing damaged neurons.

theatlantic.com - by Marina Koren - August 19, 2016

Zika is understood to pose the greatest threat to pregnant women and their fetuses, which can be born with severe brain defects if infected with the mosquito-borne virus. But new research suggests Zika may damage adult brains, too, giving scientists another thread to follow in their attempts to understand the virus as the number of infections continues to rise in South America, the Caribbean, and elsewhere.

U.S. researchers have found evidence that a certain kind of brain cell present in newborns that remains in some amounts in adulthood can be susceptible to Zika infection, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Cell Stem Cell.

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The Mystery of Zika’s Path to the Placenta

A photograph of a baby wearing a diaper. Jerome Scholler / Shutterstock

Image: A photograph of a baby wearing a diaper. Jerome Scholler / Shutterstock

theatlantic.com - August 18th 2016 - Adrienne LaFrance

Among the many mysteries that have vexed scientists about the ongoing Zika epidemic is the question of how, in pregnant women, the virus manages to cross the maternal-fetal barrier.

A woman’s body is usually quite good at protecting her growing baby. There are biological blockades to prevent the transmission of viruses to a fetus through the bloodstream, by way of the placenta; the same path for the nutrients and oxygen that sustain a developing baby.

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U.S. Declares a Public Health Emergency in Puerto Rico in Response to Zika Outbreak

                                       

hhs.gov - August 12, 2016

HHS declares a public health emergency in Puerto Rico in response to Zika outbreak

Coordinating with the government of Puerto Rico to help combat the virus, which puts thousands of pregnant women at risk

August 12, 2016 – La Fortaleza and Washington D.C. – At the request of Governor Alejandro García Padilla, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell today declared a public health emergency for Puerto Rico, signaling that the current spread of Zika virus poses a significant threat to public health in the Commonwealth relating to pregnant women and children born to pregnant women with Zika. The declaration is a tool that provides support to the government of Puerto Rico to address the outbreak on the island and underscores the public health risk of Zika, particularly to pregnant women and women of childbearing age.

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Zika - Current National Biocontainment Laboratories and Regional Biocontainment Laboratories

Zika virus is classified as biological safety level (BSL) 2 pathogen.

Revised diagnostic testing for Zika, chikungunya, and dengue viruses in US Public Health Laboratories - February 7, 2016
(see page 2, of 6 page .PDF file)
https://www.cdc.gov/zika/pdfs/denvchikvzikv-testing-algorithm.pdf

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Puerto Rico Reports Elderly Victim Infected With Zika Dies

Associated Press - by Danica Coto - August 5, 2016

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- Health officials announced Friday that an elderly person infected with Zika has died in Puerto Rico as the U.S. territory battles what federal authorities call a silent epidemic.

The victim was a 75-year-old man who was hospitalized and died from health ailments unrelated to Zika, according to Health Secretary Ana Rius. . . .

. . . The first Zika-related death was reported in late April and involved a 70-year-old man from the San Juan metro area. He suffered internal bleeding after developing a condition in which antibodies that formed in response to a Zika infection began attacking blood platelet cells. At the time, Rius said there were three other cases of the condition known as severe thrombocytopenia and that those patients recovered.

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(See additional supporting documentation within the links below)

CLICK HERE - Zika virus: first American dies of complications linked to disease

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NY1 Online: City Health Commissioner, Professor Talk Concerns About Zika Virus, Both at Rio Olympics and in US

           

CLICK HERE - VIDEO - NY1 Online: City Health Commissioner, Professor Talk Concerns About Zika Virus, Both at Rio Olympics and in US

ny1.com - by Inside City Hall - August 3, 2016

Errol Louis discussed concerns about the Zika virus, both at the Rio Olympics and here in the United States, with City Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett and Columbia University Professor Stephen Morse.

 

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Playing Catch-Up With Zika

With the growing Zika outbreak in Florida, it's a dangerous mistake to continue underestimating the virus. 

             

Complacency is the enemy.  (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

usnews.com - by Stephen S. Morse - August 1, 2016

We've seen it coming for months. Zika has been moving with hurricane intensity throughout South America and the Caribbean, appearing for the first time in 42 countries in the Western Hemisphere in less than two years. . . .

. . . We cannot afford to keep trying to catch-up every time another infection appears. . . .

. . . Zika is the infectious disease crisis now, but in our increasingly globalized and urban world, we can expect many more to come.

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Keeping Zika Out Of Your Neighborhood

by Philip K. Stoddard, Ph.D. - Mayor of South Miami & Professor of Biological Sciences - Florida International University

Tactics for keeping out Zika

1. Keep Aedes aegypti from breeding in your house and yard by eliminating all standing water (see checklist on other side).

2. Keep Aedes aegypti out of your house. Window and screens should have no gaps or holes. Move and empty your pet’s water dish every day when they don’t need it.

3. Avoid getting bitten outdoors.

Insect repellants with DEET repel flying mosquitoes and prevent them from biting. Long sleeves and trousers help. Electric fans help – Aedes aegypti is a weak flyer and likes still air.

4. Don’t let your neighbors down.

One person can provide mosquitoes for the whole neighborhood by not taking the precautions listed here.

CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL IMPORTANT INFORMATION (2 page .PDF file)

 

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Florida Confirms 10 More Zika Victims; CDC Issues Notice to Pregnant Women

           

Florida governor asks CDC to activate emergency response team following increase in Zika cases

CLICK HERE - CDC - Zika Virus - Advice for people living in or traveling to Wynwood, a neighborhood in Florida

weather.com - by Eric Chaney - August 1, 2016

The CDC issued an advisory Monday that says pregnant women should not travel to a so-called Zika "transmission area" near Miami, the same day governor Rick Scott announced there are 10 new infections of the Zika virus likely transmitted by mosquitoes, bringing the total in the state to 14.

The governor called on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to activate an Emergency Response Team to assist the Florida Department of Health and other partners in their investigation, sample collection, and mosquito control efforts.

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