Zika virus infection: Past and present of another emerging vector-borne disease.J Vector Borne Dis 2016 Oct-Dec; 53(4):305-311JV
Zika virus infection is an emerging mosquito-borne disease, first identified in Uganda in 1947. It is caused by the Zika arbovirus, and transmitted by the bites of infected mosquitoes of the genus Aedes. For almost half a century, the Zika virus was reported as the causative agent of sporadic human infections. In 2007, the Zika virus emerged outside Asia and Africa causing an epidemic on the Island of Yap in Micronesia. The manifestation of the newly acquired human infection varies from asymptomatic to self-limiting acute febrile illness with symptoms and clinical features similar to those caused by the Dengue virus ('Dengue-like syndrome'). The real-time PCR and serological methods have been successfully applied for the diagnosis of the disease. The treatment is symptomatic, since there is no specific antiviral treatment or a vaccine. During the recent outbreaks in French Polynesia and Brazil, incidents of Guillain-Barrι syndrome and microcephaly were associated with Zika virus infection, giving rise to fears of further global spread of the virus. Prevention and vector control strategies have to be urgently implemented by national health authorities in order to contain future outbreaks in vulnerable populations. This review summarizes the existing information on Zika virus characteristics, pathogenesis and epidemiology, the available methods for the diagnosis of Zika virus infection and recent approaches for prevention and control.