Brazilian Monkeys Test Positive for Zika
In a recent preprint article, study authors confirmed Zika virus infection in 4 marmoset and 3 capuchin monkeys in Ceará, Brazil.
In a recent preprint article published on bioRxiv, study authors confirmed Zika virus infection in 4 marmoset and 3 capuchin monkeys in Ceará, Brazil.
Antibodies to Zika virus have previously been detected in nonhuman primates in Africa and Asia. Zika virus epizootics occurred in monkeys in Uganda several times between 1947 and 1970 and in Senegal in 1973. According to a recent review, Zika virus in Africa causes cyclic epizootics in monkeys and probably has a sylvatic cycle, with nonhuman primates as the reservoir and mosquitoes as the vector. In areas where nonhuman primates do not live, humans are probably the reservoir species.
The authors of this study did not report whether the monkeys had any symptoms of Zika virus infection. The rhesus monkey in which the virus was first identified (in Uganda in 1947) had no symptoms other than a slightly elevated body temperature. Nonhuman primates generally do not become ill from Zika virus infection, other than sometimes developing mild fevers. According to the CDC, no cases of microcephaly have been reported in animals.
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Dr. Laurie Anne Walden received her doctorate in veterinary medicine from North Carolina State University in 1994. After an internship at Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine, she returned to North Carolina, where she has been in companion animal general practice for over 20 years. Dr. Walden is also a board-certified Editor in the Life Sciences and owner of Walden Medical Writing.