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Chikungunya Virus Vaccine in Development in the Carolinas

Asian Tiger Mosquito

Over the past few weeks, the news has been buzzing about Chikungunya Virus. We have watched it infect travelers to the Caribbean and finally become locally transmitted in Florida last week. Being bombarded with so much sobering information, it would be nice to hear something positive regarding the disease. And here it is. Though there is no vaccine currently available, there is one in development, and it is happening here in the Carolinas!

Raleigh, North Carolina based biotechnology company Arbovax and Drs. Dennis Brown and Raquel Hernandez from North Carolina State University have developed a Chikungunya vaccine. It has completed preliminary testing though more extensive testing will be needed before it can be approved and made available to the public. The implications of this news are very exciting. Though Chikungunya Virus is not normally fatal, it is extremely painful and is more dangerous to those who have other health problems. Arbovax is working on vaccines for other mosquito-borne illnesses as well.

Until the vaccine is approved and ready, vigilance and a few precautionary measures can reduce your risk of contracting Chikungunya Virus or another mosquito-borne disease. In order to avoid these diseases, you need to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. Chikungunya Virus is spread by two species of mosquitoes. One of these is the Asian Tiger mosquito, which will bite during all hours of the day. Wearing light colored clothing can make you less attractive to mosquitoes, and covering up as much of your skin as possible by wearing long sleeves and pants will make it more difficult for them to bite. On your property, it is imperative that you eliminate standing water. Mosquitoes can breed in less than a teaspoon of stagnant water, and because they produce so many offspring, just a few mosquitoes can quickly become an infestation. Removing yard waste such as grass clippings can also make your property less attractive. Mosquitoes feed on plant juices, so leaving yard waste out is rather like spreading a buffet for them.

Finally, call Mosquito Squad of Wilmington and Mosquito Squad of Myrtle Beach. Even if you have no standing water in your yard, you could still have some mosquitoes. We offer several mosquito control options including barrier sprays, misting systems, and organic options. We are sure to have a mosquito control solution to fit your property’s needs. So contact us today and help stop the spread of Chikungunya Virus.