Genetic Study Tracks Start of Zika’s Invasion of Americas Back to 2013

March 24, 2016

(Reuters) – The Zika virus currently sweeping through the Americas looks to have hitched a ride on a plane into Brazil in 2013 and begun its invasion of the continent from there, scientists said on Thursday. In the first genome analysis of the current Zika epidemic, which has been linked in Brazil to cases of birth defects known as microcephaly, researchers said the virus’ introduction to the Americas almost three years ago coincided with a 50 percent rise in air passengers from Zika-affected areas.

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