Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

West Nile virus warning system

20.06.2003


In combating West Nile virus, information could be the ultimate repellant. In an effort to develop an early-warning system for potential West Nile virus outbreaks, Cornell University’s Northeast Regional Climate Center (NRCC) and the Department of Entomology will spend this summer collecting climate data in areas where disease-carrying mosquitoes are found.



The U.S. government-funded research, it is hoped, will result in the first Web-based, degree-day calculator that warns public health officials when, where and under which conditions infectious mosquitoes can either thrive or die. The information is expected to be on line by next summer.

"Scientists, whether they are climatologists or medical entomologists, have never fully examined the relationship between climate and the proliferation of the mosquitoes that carry West Nile virus," says Arthur T. DeGaetano, Cornell associate professor of climatology and director of the NRCC, is one of the principal investigators on the project. "Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences is unique in that collaborations like this are very possible. Interaction between climatologists and medical entomologists can be at a level where information -- once it is gathered and processed -- can be readily employed in vector management schemes," he says.


The research, funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, will occur in four stages. First, climatologists and entomologists will gather climate data and synchronize this with mosquito habitat observations. These data then will be related to mosquito-count information through statistical analysis for mapping and graphing. From this information, indices will be developed for moisture surpluses, degree day-based mosquito development and killing freezes. Finally, all this data will be put on the Web for public health officials’ use.

Mosquitoes develop in microhabitats, according to Laura Harrington, Cornell assistant professor of entomology and a co-principal investigator on the project. The correlation of climate data with microhabitat information will provide scientific clues to how mosquito populations develop and age. Older mosquitoes are the carriers of West Nile virus, becoming contaminated when they feed on infected "reservoir" animals such as birds, and undergo an incubation period of the virus that can last 7-14 days. During subsequent blood meals after this incubation period, the mosquitoes inject the virus into humans and animals, where it can multiply and sometimes cause illness. It is outdoor temperatures that determine both the rate at which the virus replicates and the rate at which mosquitoes age.

While mosquitoes can live as long as three or four months in a laboratory, their life span in the wild is much shorter. Thanks to predators and pathogens, the longest a mosquito can live is probably three to four weeks, says Harrington. During the height of summer heat, a mosquito can age and become a full adult within seven to nine days.

The study also will gather information on early establishment and climate-influenced development of mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus in specialized habitats such as discarded tires and other types of containers that tend to be located close to human dwellings.

Catherine Westbrook, a Cornell graduate student in entomology, and Renee Anderson, a medical entomology extension associate, will monitor mosquito microhabitats in several Northeast locations this summer.

Contact: Blaine P. Friedlander Jr., bpf2@cornell.edu

Blaine P. Friedlander Jr. | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.news.cornell.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Vanishing capillaries
23.03.2017 | Technische Universität München

nachricht How prenatal maternal infections may affect genetic factors in Autism spectrum disorder
22.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

When Air is in Short Supply - Shedding light on plant stress reactions when oxygen runs short

23.03.2017 | Life Sciences

Researchers use light to remotely control curvature of plastics

23.03.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Sea ice extent sinks to record lows at both poles

23.03.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>