Menu

Zika Update

More local transmission within the U.S.; babies born with costly birth defects; virus persists in a patient’s semen for six months

Aug 17, 2016
Kerry Grens

WIKIMEDIA, US DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURENearly 2,000 Americans traveling abroad have contracted Zika to date, and now, an American traveler has caught the virus within the continental U.S. An El Paso County, Texas resident contracted the virus during a visit to Miami, where 30 people so far have been infected through local spread.

“This is the first Texas case to be linked to travel within the continental United States,” according to a statement from the Texas Department of State Health Services (via USA Today). “The case will be classified as ‘travel-associated’ and is being investigated for more details.”

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has tallied 1,962 people infected with Zika in the United States, including 510 pregnant women. According to the CDC’s Pregnancy Registry, as of August 4, 16 babies were born with birth defects and five fetuses with birth defects died. Earlier this month, a newborn with Zika-related microcephaly died in Texas—this was the first fatality in the state related to the viral outbreak and the second in the U.S., the Texas Tribune reported August 9.

The financial burden for children born with the birth defects seen among some infected fetuses can soar into the millions of dollars, Wired reported last week (August 12). “A very, very conservative guess would be that the medical costs of Zika would be around $600,000 for these families,” Jorge Alfaro-Murillo of Yale’s Center for Infectious Disease Modeling and Analysis told Wired. Lifetime costs for expenses such as special transportation and for parents’ lost wages can top $4 million, he said.

It’s been known that Zika virus can persist in semen, and that people can transmit the virus through intercourse. An Italian team recently reported that the pathogen may persist in semen for far longer than previously estimated, according to BBC News. Doctors found the virus in a man’s semen six months after he developed symptoms of the disease.

“Current guidelines recommend infected patients should use condoms or abstain from sex for at least six months after the onset of symptoms,” BBC News reported. “The doctors said in light of this new evidence an extension of this recommendation might be advised, as well as the continued testing of semen after six months.”

September 2018

The Muscle Issue

The dynamic tissue reveals its secrets

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

Enabling Genomics-Guided Precision Medicine

Enabling Genomics-Guided Precision Medicine

Download this eBook from Qiagen to learn more about the promise of precision medicine and how QCITM Interpret can help deliver better care with better knowledge.

Best Practices for Sample Preparation and Lipid Extraction from Various Samples

Best Practices for Sample Preparation and Lipid Extraction from Various Samples

Download this white paper from Bertin Technologies to learn how to extract and analyze lipid samples from various models!

Bio-Rad Launches CHT Ceramic Hydroxyapatite XT Media and Nuvia HP-Q Resin for Process Protein Purification

Bio-Rad Launches CHT Ceramic Hydroxyapatite XT Media and Nuvia HP-Q Resin for Process Protein Purification

Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. (NYSE: BIO and BIOb), a global leader of life science research and clinical diagnostic products, today announced the launch of two new chromatography media for process protein purification: CHT Ceramic Hydroxyapatite XT Media and Nuvia HP-Q Resin.

Immunophenotypic Analysis of Human Blood Leukocyte Subsets

Immunophenotypic Analysis of Human Blood Leukocyte Subsets

Download this application note from ACEA Biosciences, Inc., to find out how to perform an immunophenotypic analysis of a human blood sample utilizing 13 fluorescent markers using a compact benchtop flow cytometer equipped with 3 lasers!