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posted by martyb on Thursday April 21 2016, @09:47PM   Printer-friendly
from the invest-in-mosquito-nets-and-DEET dept.

New research has found that over 2 billion people live in parts of the world where the Zika virus can spread via mosquitoes:

More than two billion people live in parts of the world where the Zika virus can spread, detailed maps published in the journal eLife show. The Zika virus, which is spread by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, triggered a global health emergency this year. Last week the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that the virus causes severe birth defects.

The latest research showed mapping Zika was more complex than simply defining where the mosquito can survive. One of the researchers, Dr Oliver Brady from the University of Oxford, told the BBC: "These are the first maps to come out that really use the data we have for Zika - earlier maps were based on Zika being like dengue or chikungunya. "We are the first to add the very precise geographic and environmental conditions data we have on Zika." By learning where Zika could thrive the researchers could then predict where else may be affected. The researchers confirmed that large areas of South America, the focus of the current outbreak, are susceptible.

To put that in perspective, a recent estimate states: "The world population (the total number of living humans on Earth) was 7.349 billion as of July 1, 2015 according to the medium fertility estimate by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. "

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  • (Score: 2) by Gravis on Friday April 22 2016, @12:17AM

    by Gravis (4596) on Friday April 22 2016, @12:17AM (#335515)

    Am I the only one to think this might be some mad scientist's idea of population control?

    nature has never needed our help to create scary and insidious diseases.

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  • (Score: 2) by bitstream on Friday April 22 2016, @02:30AM

    by bitstream (6144) on Friday April 22 2016, @02:30AM (#335546) Journal

    Disease and famine has been the way nature keeps a population balance for perhaps 500 million years? No news.
    What is news is our desire and capability to get rid of horrific diseases.

  • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Friday April 22 2016, @04:17AM

    by Immerman (3985) on Friday April 22 2016, @04:17AM (#335573)

    And yet that hasn't stopped militaries the world over from trying to give it a helping hand.