Zika Virus: From Sex To GM Mosquitoes, Truth Revealed!
The Zika virus that sends crippling fear to pregnant women across the world has now escalated to a level where it poses threat to all people around the world. On Tuesday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the first case in Texas where the Zika Virus was transmitted through sexual intercourse. Elsewhere, theories emerged that genetically modified mosquitoes developed by a British company is to blame for the spread of the virus.
On February 2, the Dallas County Health and Human Services or DCHHS has received confirmation from the CDC of the first Zika virus case transmitted through sexual intercourse. The infected person had an intercourse with a partner who returned from a country where the virus is present. The DCHHS decided to maintain the anonymity of the persons involved for medical confidentiality and personal privacy reasons.
Now that it has already been confirmed that Zika virus can be transmitted through sex, Zachary Thompson, DCHHS director, said abstinence is key. The agency will increase its awareness campaign in educating the public about protecting themselves and others, the director said. “Next to abstinence, condoms are the best prevention method against any sexually-transmitted infections,” the director said in the statement.
As previously reported by Morning News USA, reports emerged from Brazil that pregnant women infected by Zika virus gave birth to babies with heads much smaller than expected. Most of those infected were bitten by mosquitoes that carry the virus. Early in January, 14 countries and territories of Americas reported cases of the virus. The CDC issued a travel alert for people to “Practice Enhanced Precautions” when travelling to Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Suriname and Venezuela.
In January, a Redditor started a thread where he suggested that Oxitec may be at fault for the proliferation of the Zika virus. Oxitec is a British biotech company pioneering an environmentally friendly way to control insect pests that spread disease and damage crops.
In 2015, Oxitec announced its release of the genetically engineered mosquito to reduce the dengue mosquito population in an area of Juazeiro, Brazil. The company genetically modified the mosquitoes known as Aedes Aegypti. In CDC’s Zika virus Q&A page, it was stated that Zika “is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito.”
Business Insider reached out to Oxitec CEO Hadyn Parry who dismissed the theory as plain rumors. “Simply untrue. All vector control solutions — insecticides, traps, and ‘sterile’ mosquitoes get deployed in areas with a high incidence of disease to help stop the spread of the disease at its source,” the CEP told Business Insider. “The fewer the mosquitoes, the lower the risk of disease. Our approach has proven to be more effective than the alternatives with a lower environmental impact,” he further explained.