Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Scientists Find Year-round West Nile Activity on Gulf Coast


How does the West Nile virus, which is transmitted by mosquitoes, survive the cold mosquito-free months of winter? In New York City, West Nile’s initial beachhead in North America, researchers found that the virus persisted in a kind of suspended animation in mosquitoes hibernating in sewers. But in much of the South, mosquitoes do not truly hibernate during winter — they just reduce their activity rate during cold periods, revving back up whenever the weather warms.

Understanding how the West Nile virus gets through winter under these conditions is crucial to understanding the ecology of West Nile in locations like the Gulf Coasts of Texas and Louisiana. Because of bird-migration patterns, these areas may be significant to the seasonal return of the virus to other parts of North America. In the September issue of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-sponsored journal Emerging Infectious Diseases, scientists at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) and the Harris County and Galveston County (Texas) mosquito control offices report an initial step toward achieving that goal: the first successful detection of West Nile virus in mosquitoes and dead birds collected near the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coasts between the months of November and March.

“The evidence suggests year-round West Nile activity in the Gulf region, with virus transmission persisting at a low level throughout the winter months,” said UTMB pathology professor Robert Tesh, the study’s senior author. “That’s quite different from how the virus appears to over-winter in colder regions like New York.”

The data presented in the paper derive in part from an ongoing long-term study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, on the ecology of West Nile virus in Harris County. This study was begun by UTMB and Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services in 2002, the year the same group made the first identification of West Nile virus in Texas.

| newswise
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Strong, steady forces at work during cell division
20.10.2016 | University of Massachusetts at Amherst

nachricht Disturbance wanted
20.10.2016 | Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Innovative technique for shaping light could solve bandwidth crunch

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Finding the lightest superdeformed triaxial atomic nucleus

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA's MAVEN mission observes ups and downs of water escape from Mars

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

More VideoLinks >>>