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Unravelling the Paediatric and Perinatal Zika Virus Epidemic through Population-based Research

Zika virus causes Guillain-Barre Syndrome and microcephaly. Clinical and laboratory diagnosis is complicated. Population-based research can elucidate ZIKV epidemiology, vertical transmission, fetal risks of maternal ZIKV infection and natural history of congenital and non-congenital ZIKV infection provided by the activities in “ZIKAction” research consortium, recently funded by the European Commission.

Zika virus (ZIKV) epidemic now involves 72 countries, worldwide. Transmission is multimodal through mosquito bites and blood and body fluids. Zika virus causes Guillain-Barre Syndrome and pregnancy complications including perinatal microcephaly. Diagnosis is complicated by subclinical infection in 80%, co-circulation with dengue and chikungunya fevers with similar presentations and cross-reactivity in serological tests. There is no cure, or preventive vaccine.

August 23, 2016
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