Aedes aegypti, the primary mosquito that carries Zika virus, may also transmit chikungunya and dengue viruses with one bite, a new study has found.
The findings shed new light on what is known as a co- infection, which scientists say is not yet fully understood and may be fairly common in areas experiencing outbreaks.
“A mosquito, in theory, could give you multiple viruses at once,” said Claudia Ruckert, post-doctoral researcher at Colorado State University (CSU) in the US.
The team infected mosquitoes in the lab with multiple kinds of viruses to learn more about the transmission of more than one infection from a single mosquito bite.
The researchers found that mosquitoes in the lab can transmit all three viruses simultaneously, although this is likely to be extremely rare in nature.
While they described the lab results as surprising, researchers said there is no reason to believe that these co- infections are more severe than being infected with one virus at a time.
“Dual infections in humans, however, are fairly common, or more common than we would have thought,” Ruckert said.
The researchers had expected to find that one virus would prove to be dominant and outcompete the others in the midgut of the mosquito where the infections establish and replicate before being transmitted to humans.
“It is interesting that all three replicate in a really small area in the mosquito’s body,” Ruckert said.
“When these mosquitoes get infected with two or three different viruses, there is almost no effect that the viruses have on each other in the same mosquito,” she said.
The first report of chikungunya and dengue virus co- infection occurred in 1967, researchers said. More recently, co-infections of Zika and dengue viruses, Zika and chikungunya, and all three viruses have been reported during various outbreaks, including the recent outbreak of Zika virus in North and South America.
Source: Daily Excelsior
Two studies out Monday show that the Zika virus may not be working alone in causing strange infections in South America. It may be getting help from dengue and chikungunya, too.
“One team found that mosquitoes can be infected with Zika and chikungunya at the same time and could, in theory, infect people with both viruses in a single bite.
“And a second team found a range of unusual symptoms in people in Brazil last year as Zika, chikungunya and dengue all swept through populations, often infecting people at the same time. One of the oddest is known as ‘dancing eyes-dancing feet syndrome.’
“The findings, presented at a meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, add to the growing list of mysterious and previously unsuspected damage that Zika virus causes.
“’Our analysis shows that each of these viruses may have the potential to cause a range of neurological complications, some very severe, and patients should be monitored for symptoms,’ said Dr. Isadora Siqueira of Brazil’s Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, who worked on one study.
“’What’s very difficult to determine is whether having a co-infection with two of these viruses increases the risk of neurological problems. We are still looking closely at the case of the patient who was infected with both chikungunya and dengue.’
“Dengue and Zika are closely related viruses called flaviviruses. Chikungunya is in a different family, called alphaviruses, but all three are spread by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes and they can cause similar symptoms: fever, headache and body aches. Zika causes severe birth defects; dengue can cause a deadly hemorrhagic fever and chikungunya causes racking pain.
“They are not easy to tell apart and only with tests made available in recent months can doctors tell for sure which virus a patient has had.
“All three can also cause rare neurological side-effects and doctors have wondered if people get sicker if they become infected with more than one at the same time, or one after the other.
“The findings from northeastern Brazil suggest they may. They reported on 21 cases of neurological illnesses including Guillain-Barre syndrome, a strange, paralyzing condition that can be caused by a number of infections, including Zika.
“Most of the patients had classic Guillain-Barre, which usually clears up, although it can make patients seriously ill. Others had much more unusual conditions, including two with opsoclonus-myoclonue ataxia syndrome, commonly known as dancing eyes-dancing feet syndrome because of the strange, jerky movements it can cause.
“It usually only affects about 1 in a million people, but both cases turned up in the same hospital during an epidemic affecting 18,000 people.
“One of the two patients tested positive for both Zika and dengue, while the second had both chikungunya and dengue, Siqueira said.
“None of the patients died but it can take weeks or even months to fully recover from these conditions. Zika has killed a handful of patients, as has chikungunya. Dengue comes in four strains and is much deadlier.
“There’s a worry if the viruses work together to worsen illness. Brazilian doctors have been trying to determine if having two infections together or close together makes a pregnant woman more likely to have a baby with birth defects, for instance.”
Source: NBC News
Over the last few weeks we’ve heard a lot about the chikungunya virus as more and more cases are diagnosed here in the United States. Although this new disease is dangerous and painful, other mosquito-borne diseases are still present. In particular, we’re headed into the peak of West Nile Virus season.
Mosquitoes have been testing positive for West Nile for the last few months and now more and more human cases are being confirmed from California to Pennsylvania. Just this week a Texas man died with West Nile being reported as a contributing factor. Additionally mosquito spraying is being conducted in Montgomery County, Texas as a result.
The first US outbreak of the West Nile Virus occurred back in 1999 in New York. Since then, the Centers for Disease Control have been monitoring and reporting on the disease. Unlike chikungunya, the majority of West Nile patients are infected domestically (chikungunya victims are normally infected while travelling). 2012 brought the highest number of cases since the mosquito-borne disease since it began being tracked in the US with over 5,000 cases (just over 2,400 were reported in 2013).
Unfortunately, there is no vaccine or cure for West Nile Virus. The vast majority of infected people will never even display symptoms, but when they do, they can be difficult. High fever, nausea, and aching are just some of the common symptoms of the disease. It tends to affect the young and old more dramatically.
At Mosquito Squad, we always say that the best way to protect yourself from mosquito-transmitted disease is to limit your exposure to mosquitoes. Reducing your property’s mosquito population is the first step. You can do that by ridding your yard of any standing water and hiring a professional mosquito control company. Our mosquito elimination services are reapplied every 2-3 weeks to the foliage where mosquitoes are known to feed and live.
When venturing out into non-treated areas, you’ll need to take additional precautions to protect yourself from mosquito bites. Consider wearing loose long-sleeved shirts and pants and apply a DEET spray to the uncovered areas of the skin.
If you have questions on mosquito control, please give you nearest Mosquito Squad location a call. We’re happy to answer any questions.
As mosquitoes are in their active season and homeowners are enjoying the last weeks of summer, no one wants to think about the nasty and dangerous diseases mosquitoes can transmit through their bites. Unfortunately, with hundreds of Americans testing positive for chikungunya this year, the threat of mosquito-borne disease is a concern. But, what is chikungunya?
Chikungunya was first described in 1955 along the border of Mozambique and Tanzania. It is believed, however, that the first outbreak happened in 1779. The name comes from a native language of that area and means “that which bends up” because of the position people take when suffering some of the disease’s painful symptoms.
Chikungunya is most commonly found in tropical areas of the world. Until this summer, all Americans that tested positive for chikungunya had been infected with it abroad (two Americans have been infected domestically this year). The CDC reported that the influx of cases this year is a result of an outbreak in the Carribean, a place where many Americans go for vacation.
The majority of chikungunya patients do display symptoms, typically 2-3 days after infection. Symptoms include, high fever, joint pain, rash, headache and nausea.
Doctors in the U.S. are aware of the influx of chikungunya this year and are warning people to be vigilant and protect yourself. “Prevention is key and experts say to protect yourself from the virus, simply limit your exposure to mosquitoes.” Source.
At Mosquito Squad, we’re happy to help homeowners protect themselves and their friends and family from the nuisance and dangers of mosquitoes. Our professional mosquito control services treat the areas of the property where mosquitoes are known to feed and harbor, so you don’t have to spray any repellent on your skin.
Our ongoing mosquito control services fall into three categories: our traditional barrier spray, all natural mosquito spray and our mosquito misting system. The traditional barrier spray reduces your mosquito population by up to 90% and needs to be reapplied every 3 weeks or so. The all natural mosquito control repels mosquitoes from the property with its scent (unnoticeable to humans) for up to 2 weeks. And for more control of your mosquito spray, we have our installed mosquito misting system that sends out short bursts of mosquito spray when they are known to be their most active. A remote is also available for those nights they are out in droves.
If you have any questions on how to protect yourself from mosquito-transmitted disease, please contact your local Mosquito Control office.
For the last few months we’ve been following the newest mosquito-borne disease to hit the United States: chikungunya. Up until last week, all the diagnosed cases in the U.S. had been transmitted elsewhere. Travellers to the Caribbean were bitten by infected mosquitoes but didn’t display symptoms until back in the states. Last week, however, marked the first domestic case of chikungunya.
A Florida resident was recently diagnosed with chikungunya, but unlike other patients he had not recently travelled outside the United States. With the first domestic case, does that mean we are on the verge of an outbreak? The CDC says no.
The Centers for Disease Control is currently examining how the Florida man got the virus and keeping an eye on any other domestic cases. When chikungunya hit the Caribbean it spread very quickly, infecting thousands of locals and tourists alike, but the CDC doesn’t see that to be the case in the U.S. They “believe chikungunya will be have like dengue virus in the U.S., where imported cases have resulted in sporadic local transmission but have no caused widespread outbreaks.” Source.
With the outbreaks of West Nile Virus we’ve seen in recent years, we know how serious mosquito-borne disease can be, and how quickly it can spread. It’s very important to protect yourself from mosquitoes, especially at dawn and dusk when they are known to be most active.
At Mosquito Squad, we enhance our client’s outdoor living experience by protecting them from both the annoyance and dangers of mosquitoes. Our mosquito control services effectively cut down the property’s mosquito population. Our traditional, and most popular, mosquito treatment reduces the number of mosquitoes by 85-90%, while our all-natural treatment repels 80%.
Depending on the service that you chose, our trained technicians visit your property every 2-3 weeks to reapply the mosquito control product to the foliage where mosquitoes are known to feed and harbor. And, for even more control, we can install a permanent mosquito misting system that emits small bursts of mosquito spray when mosquitoes are their most active. If you are seeing more mosquitoes than normal, you will also have a remote to use.
If you have questions regarding mosquito control options, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
We are in the midst of mosquito season and a new mosquito borne virus continues to be reported across many parts of the U.S. Chikungunya, which was first reported in Florida in May, has now been diagnosed in Texas, Massachusetts, Arizona, Ohio and 22 other states. The average number of cases in the U.S. has been around 28 per year, but there have been over 120 cases so far this year, and we are in the height of mosquito season!
It’s believed that all of the American chikungunya cases have been transmitted to the patients while traveling abroad and hasn’t been transmitted in the U.S, but that could change. As the Centers for Disease Control explains: “With the recent outbreaks in the Caribbean and the Pacific, the number of chikungunya cases among travelers visiting or returning to the United States from affected areas will likely increase. These imported cases could result in local spread of the virus in the continental United States.” Source.
Chikungunya is most commonly found in Africa and Asia. This past fall, the Caribbean reported larger numbers of the disease, spreading throughout the area, illustrating how quickly it can spread.
Unfortunately, there is no vaccine or cure for chikungunya, but it is rarely fatal. Its symptoms include fever, severe joint pain and rashes. Symptoms occur in the first 12 days after transmission and, unlike West Nile, the majority of people with chikungunya will display symptoms.
When it comes to mosquito-borne disease, the best course of protection is an integrated pest management system, with both do-it-yourself and professional action. Reducing the amount of standing water is the first step in cutting down your property’s mosquito population. It takes just a little bit of water for female mosquitoes to lay their eggs.
Even if you tip over outdoor objects or toss trash, it is incredibly difficult to get rid of all the standing water on your property, and even if you did, you will still have mosquitoes on site. A professional mosquito control company is the second step to protecting you and your family against mosquitoes and the illnesses they carry. By applying a mosquito spray to your property every 21 days, Mosquito Squad will greatly reduce the number of mosquitoes in your yard (usually by 85-90%)!
If you have questions on how to protect yourself from mosquito-borne disease, please reference the CDC website at cdc.gov or contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
The newest vector-borne disease in the news and spreading rapidly in the Caribbean, Chikungunya, has now been confirmed in Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia. It’s believed that all patients contracted the disease while travelling abroad, but is a U.S. outbreak possible?
The Centers for Disease Control has been vigilantly watching the disease and is concerned about the possibility of it spreading. Historically, around 25 Americans come back to the States each year after having been infected abroad. The current outbreak in Caribbean is what is cause for concern as it’s a haven for American tourists. If more travelers bring Chikungunya back to the U.S, the likelihood of an outbreak here increases.
West Nile was first brought into the United States by travellers before an outbreak occurred domestically.
Not all mosquito species can carry and transmit chikungunya. The Aedes mosquitoes are virus carrying and are known to transmit chikungunya, eastern equine encephalitis, West Nile, and dengue fever. They also happen to be present in all continents except Antarctica.
Chikungunya is typically not fatal, but symptoms can be uncomfortable and serious. Symptoms begin within 12 days of infection and include fever, joint pain and rashes. Recovery from the disease varies widely based on age, with elderly patients sometimes suffering for 2-3 months.
Protecting yourself from mosquitoes is the best way to protect yourself from mosquito-borne illness. At Mosquito Squad, we urge homeowners to remove any standing water on their properties to reduce the ability for mosquitoes to reproduce. Additionally, we protect our clients’ yards with professional mosquito control. Our trained technicians come to the property every 2-3 weeks to apply a mosquito spray that eliminates mosquitoes on contact and provides continuous protection. Clients can expect a 85-90% reduction in their property’s mosquito population.
If you have questions on how to protect yourself from mosquito and tick-borne diseases, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
At Mosquito Squad, we pride ourselves on protecting our clients from the annoyance and dangers of mosquitoes and ticks. As the weather continues to warm up, we’ve seen an influx of requests for tick and mosquito control for the yard. And with news across the country of vector-borne disease, it is no surprise people are looking for ways to keep the bugs at bay.
Just last week, we discussed Chikungunya having been found in Florida and now new reports of dengue in the area have locals concerned over an outbreak. Dengue fever is a virus transmitted through the bite of a mosquito. Symptoms of dengue include rash, fever and muscle and joint pain. While there is no specific medication for dengue, patients that are able to stay hydrated are able to fight the disease successfully.
While Florida is being hit by these tropical mosquito-borne disease, early mosquito and bird tests in Illinois are positive for West Nile in the area. Many municipalities across the country catch and test mosquitoes. It not only helps them gauge how much municipal spraying is needed, but it also lets them know if mosquitoes carrying certain bacteria are present.
With an increase of ticks in many areas of the country, officials are concerned about the growing numbers of Lyme disease as well. From Michigan to Virginia to Vermont, local health officials are warning residents to be vigilant and take precautionary measures when spending outside in areas where ticks are known to be active.
Reducing your exposure to mosquitoes and ticks is the best way prevent vector-borne disease. At Mosquito Squad, we use a combination of mosquito spraying and tick tubes to cut down on the pest population on the property. Having continuous outdoor pest control, normally applied every 2-3 weeks, during the busy mosquito and tick months will reduce your mosquito population by 85-90%!
If you have questions on how to protect yourself from vector-borne disease, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
Over the last 6 months, we’ve been following the news regarding chikungunya, a mosquito-borne disease that is most frequently found in Africa and Asia. In December, news began of its presence in the Caribbean and just a few weeks ago, we discussed how quickly it moved through Haiti. It seems to be moving north, with confirmed cases now in Florida.
A health official in Dade County, Florida recently confirmed the fourth case of chikungunya in the state. All of the patients had recently traveled to the Caribbean.
Chikungunya is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. Symptoms typically begin three to seven days after the initial bite and include severe joint paint and fever. At this time there is no vaccine or medication to combat the disease, but it is rarely fatal.
The Centers for Disease Control have been warning of an American outbreak of chikungunya since December when it started growing in the Caribbean. At the time, they told travelers to be aware of the disease and be observant as they travel through the area. As so many bugs, and vector-borne disease spread through travel, the CDC issued a statement saying they expected the disease to come to the United States.
We at Mosquito Squad will be following the news regarding chikungunya and if it spreads to other parts of the country, but being proactive is always the best defense when it comes to vector-borne disease. It’s important that you take the necessary steps with effective mosquito control.
The first step in mosquito control is to minimize their breeding grounds on your property. Mosquitoes need standing water to mature and since they don’t tend to travel too far from where they hatch, getting rid of the standing water on your property will reduce your mosquito population.
Getting rid of the standing water on your property is just the first step to complete mosquito protection for your yard. Having a professional mosquito control company, like Mosquito Squad, visit your property every 2-3 weeks will greatly diminish the number of mosquitoes you see in your yard.
If you have questions regarding how best to protect you from mosquitoes and the illnesses they transmit, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
Not even a year ago, we at Mosquito Squad became aware of a mosquito-borne illness that was growing in numbers in the Caribbean called chikungunya. The Centers for Disease Control warned travelers of the illness in December and stated that is was “very likely” to end up in the United States and now a new report from Haiti is illustrating how serious this disease can be.
Haiti reported their first chikungunya cases last week with 14 confirmed cases. Just one week later, health officials have confirmed over 1,500 cases!
Chikungunya is transmitted through the bite of an affected Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same mosquito that transmits dengue fever and yellow fever. The Aedes aegypti is most common in tropical and subtropical areas of the world. Chikungunya causes a high fever that will last several days as well as headaches, joint pain and rashes. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for the disease at this time.
Chikungunya is most common in Africa and Asia. Like many other bugs and diseases, it was brought to the Caribbean through travel. Now that mosquitoes are entering their peak breeding months, it is imperative that locals and travelers protect themselves against mosquito bites as the number of cases could easily continue to rise.
We are often asked how a mosquito infects through their bite. Only female mosquitoes bite for blood as it is necessary to produce eggs. When she injects her proboscis into the skin, she releases saliva and anti-coagulants. The viruses or diseases that the mosquito carries are present in the saliva and are transmitted through the bite.
Not all mosquitoes transmit or carry disease, but it is smart to protect yourself from them when you can. At Mosquito Squad, we protect our clients with our mosquito treatments for the yard. For our seasonal clients, we visit the property every 2-3 weeks and treat the foliage and areas of the yard where mosquitoes are known to harbor. That mosquito control spray will eliminate the mosquitoes on contact and provide continuous protection for up to 21 days.
While professional outdoor pest control can reduce your mosquito population by 85-90%, you still need to protect yourself when you leave a treated property. We suggest wearing long, loose fitting clothing or spraying exposed skin with a DEET product.
If you have questions on how to protect yourself from mosquitoes and the diseases they carry, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
Mosquito-borne diseases are present in any area of the country and world where mosquitoes are active. While the diseases they carry are different depending on the areas of the world, many of them are dangerous and debilitating. Earlier this week, the Centers of Disease Control (CDC) issued a warning against a painful mosquito-borne illness for any U.S. travelers to the Caribbean.
Ten people in the Caribbean have recently been diagnosed with Chikungunya virus. The CDC says it is “very likely” to end up in the United States. As CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden explains, “Microbes know no boundaries, and the appearance of chikungunya virus in the Western hemisphere represents another threat to health security. CDC experts have predicted and prepared for its arrival for several years and there are surveillance systems in place to help us track it.” Source.
The Asian tiger mosquito is a common carrier of Chikungunya. The tiger mosquito is easily recognizable by the black and white stripes on their legs.
Chikungunya symptoms can take days to display after being infected with the disease. Symptoms of the disease are very similar to those of dengue fever including a high fever, rash, headache, nausea and severe joint pain. The name Chikungunya comes from the Mankonde language and means, “that which bends up” because it can be very painful.
Chikungunya was first found in Africa but has been moving into Asia and Europe and now the Caribbean in recent years. So far there have been 109 travelers who have been diagnosed with Chikungunya in the United States and luckily it hasn’t spread since there.
With winter holidays and travel in full swing, the CDC issued a statement of warning: the “CDC estimated that about 9 million U.S. residents travel to the Caribbean each year. Given that volume of travelers, chikungunya could occur more frequently in returning U.S. mainland travelers if the virus expands in the region.” Source.
The CDC stated that it is possible for a single infected person to start an outbreak of the disease. While we aren’t in the height of mosquito season now, it will start again in just a few short months. At Mosquito Squad, we protect our clients from mosquitoes and the dangerous diseases they carry with our mosquito control treatments. By treating your property for mosquitoes, your chances of being infected while spending time outside in your yard is decreased. If you have any questions, please contact your local Mosquito Squad office.
The Asian tiger mosquito is one of the most easily recognizable mosquito species due to its black and white stripes. They were first discovered in the U.S. in the 1980s and have grown in population ever since. Unlike many mosquito species, the Asian tiger mosquito is known to thrive in cities like New York and now Cornell University is studying whether or not the pest can lead to an outbreak of chikungunya in 2013.
Chikungunya is a vector-borne disease that has similar symptoms to dengue fever. Common symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain and headaches. Chikungunya is normally brought to the United States through travelers from Africa and Asia. Cornell University has been studying the disease and its possible growth in the U.S. through the Asian tiger mosquito.
Climate warming and international travel was looked at to see how it can affect the spread of Chikungunya through a computer model. The model shows that if one person carrying the disease is bitten by an Asian tiger mosquito, there is a high probability of an outbreak, in some areas affecting 1 in every 5,000 people. According to the prediction, outbreaks could occur in New York during August and September, in Atlanta from June to September and year-round in Miami. The Asian tiger mosquito will be a significant carrier of the disease due to its urban dwelling life.
There is no vaccine for Chikungunya at this time so health officials are urging travelers and homeowners to protect themselves by ridding areas of standing water and wearing long sleeves, pants and repellent at times when mosquitoes are most active. It’s important for those travelers leaving the country to also know the risk and symptoms of the areas they travel to.
While it will be interesting to see if Cornell’s predictions are correct, we at Mosquito Squad think it is always important to protect yourself from mosquitoes, ticks and the harmful disease they can spread. Asian tiger mosquitoes, like all mosquitoes, breed in standing water, and not just large bodies of water. Three hundred mosquito eggs can be laid in a puddle as small as a bottle cap! Make sure you empty any standing water from your yard at least once a week and more frequently when temperatures are warmer. Mosquito reproduction occurs more quickly in warmer temperatures.
Some properties will need professional mosquito control to rid the space of mosquitoes. For that, you have Mosquito Squad!