Focus on...Zika virus

Zika virus

The flavivirus sweeping across Latin America and now associated with microcephaly in babies

The Biologist 63(2) p32-33

Since the late 1940s, the mosquito-transmitted Zika virus has been found in equatorial regions of Africa and Asia, where it caused a mild, flu-like illness.

Last spring, the virus burst into the public consciousness as it spread across South America. Since then, more than a million people in Brazil are thought to have been infected, and the virus has been linked to an alarming increase in the number of babies in the region born with microcephaly, a condition characterised by an abnormally small skull and brain.

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