215 Views

Zika Virus: Nigeria Among Most Vulnerable Countries, Says Lancet Study

Scientists trying to predict the future path of Zika say that 2.6 billion people living in parts of Asia and Africa could be at risk of infection, based on a new analysis of travel, climate and mosquito patterns in those regions according to a report on Yahoo News.

Some of the most vulnerable countries include India, China, the Philippines, Indonesia, Nigeria, Vietnam, Pakistan and Bangladesh, according to the research.

Experts caution that the study could overestimate the number of people at risk because they don’t know whether Zika had already landed in some of these countries in the past and allowed people to develop immunity. More than two-thirds of people infected with Zika never get sick, and symptoms are mild for those who do, so surveillance systems may have missed cases.

Although Zika was first identified in 1947, the virus wasn’t considered a major health threat until a major outbreak in Brazil last year revealed that Zika can lead to severe birth defects when pregnant women are infected.

In February, the World Health Organization declared the spread of Zika a global emergency, and epidemics have been sparked in at least 70 countries. In the last few weeks, it has sickened more than 100 people in Singapore and started spreading in Florida. Zika is mostly spread by a specific species of tropical mosquito, but it can also be spread by sex and through blood transfusions.

Researchers hope their new study will help officials plan ahead to possibly avoid some of the worst effects of Zika.

“For countries with a finite amount of resources, this may help them use those resources as efficiently as possible,” said Dr. Kamran Khan, an infectious diseases physician and scientist at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, the study’s senior author.

To figure out where Zika might gain a future foothold, researchers examined patterns of people traveling from infected regions in the Americas to Africa and Asia and combined that with an assessment of local conditions, including mosquito populations. They used the spread of a related virus, dengue, as a model for Zika since the same mosquito species transmits both diseases. Dengue is not spread by sex, like Zika, but mosquitoes are responsible for the vast majority of Zika cases globally.

ALSO READ  10 Health Benefits of Laughter

The study was published online Thursday in the journal, Lancet.

Some experts pointed out that the expected impact of Zika will depend largely on whether people have any previous exposure to the virus — and that is unknown.

“No one has ever looked, so we don’t know if there is any pre-existing immunity to the virus,”
said Dr. Abraham Goorhuis of the University of Amsterdam, an author of a commentary that accompanies the Lancet study. The virus in the Americas is an Asian strain that was responsible for a large outbreak in French Polynesia and other Pacific Islands in 2013 and 2014.

“If there was broad circulation of this virus in Asia, then it could be that the risk of Zika spreading to Asia won’t be as bad as we think,” Goorhuis said. He said another big unknown was whether people who might have been exposed to the African strain of Zika might be protected once the slightly different Asian version arrives. It’s unclear how widely the original 1947 strain found in Africa may have spread.

Goorhuis also noted it was possible Zika might eventually burn itself out after about a year or so of circulation, the way a related virus, chikungunya, recently did. Others said scientists should seize the chance now to prevent Zika from becoming entrenched elsewhere.

Ben Neuman, a virology professor at the University of Reading, said that once the virus has started to spread by mosquitoes locally, and not just by travelers, it can become entrenched in animals as well as people and be extremely difficult to eradicate. “We have the opportunity right now to prevent (Zika’s) spread and by doing so, halting the spread of unnecessary suffering,” he said.

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest Posts

Nigerian Rapper, Vector, Calls Out SARS In New Release
Entertainment
39 views
Entertainment
39 views

Nigerian Rapper, Vector, Calls Out SARS In New Release

PH - June 19, 2018

The continuous outcry by youngsters over the domineering intrusion and at times unreserved brutality of members of the Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS) against the youths has apparently…

Meaningful Hairstyles Among Yoruba Women In Those Days
Art, History and Culture
42 views
Art, History and Culture
42 views

Meaningful Hairstyles Among Yoruba Women In Those Days

PH - June 19, 2018

In Yorubaland, in those days, women did not just plait their way to make them beautiful only. But some hairstyles were a means of identifying specific kinds…

This Government Has Done More Than Enough – Governor Ajimobi
Politics
40 views
Politics
40 views

This Government Has Done More Than Enough – Governor Ajimobi

PH - June 19, 2018

Abiola Ajimobi, governor of Oyo state, says the All Progressives Congress (APC) has done more than enough for the country. The governor said this on Roadmap 2019,…

Why President Buhari Honoured MKO Abiola, Kingibe
Politics
49 views
Politics
49 views

Why President Buhari Honoured MKO Abiola, Kingibe

PH - June 19, 2018

A Former governor of Kaduna State, and elder statesman, Balarabe Musa, has revealed why President Muhammadu Buhari gave a posthumous award to Chief M.K.O Abiola and recognized…

Oluwo of Iwo land, Oba Abulrasheed Donates N1.5bn Medical Equipment
Food and Health
51 views
Food and Health
51 views

Oluwo of Iwo land, Oba Abulrasheed Donates N1.5bn Medical Equipment

PH - June 19, 2018

The Oluwo of Iwo land, Osun State, Oba Abulrasheed Adewale Akanbi, on Monday, donated medical equipment worth N1.5bn to hospitals in Iwo land. A statement signed by…

3  Ways To Make Your Partner Feel Special
Romance and Love
55 views
Romance and Love
55 views

3 Ways To Make Your Partner Feel Special

PH - June 19, 2018

Every one wants to be special to someone, if not to everyone, so it cost almost nothing to make your partner feel special. So when next you…

Kayode Shows His Love For The Ukrainian Club With  A New Hair Style
Sports
56 views
Sports
56 views

Kayode Shows His Love For The Ukrainian Club With A New Hair Style

PH - June 19, 2018

Kayode Olanrewaju, Nigera forward has declared that the main reason for his new look is his love for Ukrainian club, Shakhtar Donestsk. Kayode, 25, recently penned a…

See The Top 10 Most Used cars In Nigeria
Best of Nigeria
53 views
Best of Nigeria
53 views

See The Top 10 Most Used cars In Nigeria

PH - June 19, 2018

You possibly might have been guessing which car is the most used car here in Nigeria. This list on the most used cars in Nigeria will prove…

“Why I Choose Not To Help Anybody” – Nigeria Rapper, Olamide
Entertainment
62 views
Entertainment
62 views

“Why I Choose Not To Help Anybody” – Nigeria Rapper, Olamide

MT - June 19, 2018

Nigerian artiste, Olamide Adedeji has got people talking on social media with a post he made on Instagram. Olamide shared a photo with a questionable caption, “Oyinbo…

Meet the Rapper Who Lives With All His Three Babymamas and Kids in the Same House (Photos)
Entertainment
74 views
Entertainment
74 views

Meet the Rapper Who Lives With All His Three Babymamas and Kids in the Same House (Photos)

MT - June 19, 2018

Ahunna Stacks is an American rapper from Chicago who is making serious headlines around the world because of a really bold move he made. The American musician,…

2018 World Cup; Why John Mikel Obi Is Under Pressure To Fulfill Promise To Buhari
Sports
60 views
Sports
60 views

2018 World Cup; Why John Mikel Obi Is Under Pressure To Fulfill Promise To Buhari

MT - June 19, 2018

Super Eagles’ captain Mikel Obi has been put under intense pressure to lead the team to a resounding victory against Iceland on Friday, as well as fulfill…

Sallah: How Boko Haram Terrorists Observed Eid Prayer In Sambisa Forest. [Video]
Shocking
59 views
Shocking
59 views

Sallah: How Boko Haram Terrorists Observed Eid Prayer In Sambisa Forest. [Video]

MT - June 19, 2018

A compilation video of how Boko Haram terrorists observed Eid-el-Fitr in various locations of Sambisa forest has surfaced on the internet. A journalist with access to the…

What Will It Take To Make Nigeria Better
Business
59 views
Business
59 views

What Will It Take To Make Nigeria Better

PH - June 19, 2018

Nigerians need to agree that something has to be done before there can be any improvement in the system of the country, there has been various assumptions…

Meet Nigeria’s King Of Music, King Sunny Ade
Best of Nigeria
78 views
Best of Nigeria
78 views

Meet Nigeria’s King Of Music, King Sunny Ade

PH - June 19, 2018

Sunday Adeniyi Adegeye, popularly known as King Sunny Ade was born September 1, 1946. He is a Nigerian born popular musician in the development and popularization of…

Food and Health
63 views

Breaking Bad Habits And Replacing Them With Good Ones

PH - June 19, 2018

Bad habits are mostly cultivated when people feel stressed or bored. Once it is cultivated, it becomes very hard to give up on it. Different things can…

See 8 Things You Should Never Say Via A Text
Lifestyle
68 views
Lifestyle
68 views

See 8 Things You Should Never Say Via A Text

PH - June 19, 2018

People say some things are better left unsaid, but I would say," some things are better said in person than on text". When texting another person, your…

5 Strange Animals Nigerians Eat As Meat
Animals
78 views
Animals
78 views

5 Strange Animals Nigerians Eat As Meat

PH - June 19, 2018

If you have never been to a place before, you can never have the full understanding of their way of live. So the adage says, " one…

How UK Helps Nigeria Seize Looted Assets
Politics
58 views
Politics
58 views

How UK Helps Nigeria Seize Looted Assets

PH - June 19, 2018

The Federal Government has given an insight into how it gets the assistance of the United Kingdom to seize properties and other assets linked to funds allegedly…

Loading...