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First U.S. Zika Virus Transmission Reported, Likely Through Sex Rather Than Mosquito Bite

Accepted submission by takyon at 2016-02-03 03:42:21

The outbreak of the Zika virus [] has reached the U.S., and the virus was likely transmitted through sexual contact rather than a mosquito bite []:

The first known case of Zika virus transmission in the United States was reported in Texas on Tuesday by local health officials, who said it likely was contracted through sex and not a mosquito bite, a day after the World Health Organization declared an international public health emergency.

The virus, linked to severe birth defects in thousands of babies in Brazil, is spreading rapidly in the Americas, and WHO officials on Tuesday expressed concern that it could hit Africa and Asia as well. Zika had been thought to be spread by the bite of mosquitoes of the Aedes genus, so sexual contact as a mode of transmission would be a potentially alarming development.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed it was the first U.S. Zika case in someone who had not traveled abroad in the current outbreak, said CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden on Twitter. However, the CDC has not investigated how the virus was transmitted.

After this case, the CDC advised men to consider using condoms after traveling to areas with the Zika virus. Pregnant women should avoid contact with semen from men exposed to the virus.

[emailed the CDC, update with CDC urls/info here]

Original Submission