Single mosquito bite can transmit multiple viruses: Research

Mosquito bites are not just a nuisance but can results into a serious public health threat as a single mosquito bite can transmit multiple dangerous viruses, researchers have warned.

At team of researchers from Colorado State University exposed mosquitoes to viruses like chikungunya, dengue and Zika as well as different blends of the three. They wanted to determine if one or all three of the dangerous diseases could spread from infected mosquitoes to healthy people.

They examined the saliva, legs and gut of misquotes for signs of viral infection, and found that a whopping 92 per cent of insects tested positive for all the three viruses.

Greg Ebel, the director of the Arthropod-borne & Infectious Diseases Laboratory, said, “On the one hand, all of these viruses have mechanisms to suppress mosquito immunity, which could lead to synergy. On the other hand, they all likely require similar resources within infected cells, which could lead to competition.”

In short, the researchers found in the new study that Aedes aegypti mosquitoes that carry Zika virus can also transmit chikungunya and dengue in the same bite.

The researchers detailed the health threat in the most recent edition of the journal Nature Communications.