Art and Science of Laboratory Medicine

Art and Science of Laboratory Medicine

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Can Zika virus be sexually transmitted?

Vincent Racaniell says in Virology blog "Perhaps in very rare cases, but the main mode of transmission is certainly via mosquitoes. If you just read the news headlines, which many people do, you will think that Zika virus spreads like HIV. But it does not."

The first hint of sexual transmission of Zika virus came from the story of two American scientists working in Senegal in 2008, where they were sampling mosquitoes. Between 6-9 days after returning to their homes in Colorado, they developed a variety of symptoms of infection including fatigue, headache, chills, arthralgia, and a maculopapular rash. The wife of one patient had not traveled to Africa, yet she developed similar symptoms three days after her husband. Analysis of paired acute and convalescent sera from all three patients revealed antibodies against Zika virus. The authors of the study do not conclude that transmission from husband to wife was via sexual activity – they suggest it as a possiblity.

Just as we are not sure that Zika virus causes microencephaly, we are not sure if it can be sexually transmitted.

Read more:
Zika from sex is the byway, not the highway

Source: Virology blog
Image credits: Getty Images

No comments:

Follow "Art and Science of Laboratory Medicine " on: