Research published that may help decrease dengue virus risk


Anna Stewart Ibarra, a researcher at the Center for Global Health and Translational Science at State University of New York Upstate Medical University, published a study on Nov. 12 in PLOS ONE that may help decrease dengue fever risk.

Dengue is a life-threatening mosquito-borne viral disease, and is one of the fastest spreading tropical diseases. Cases of dengue are currently reported in Florida and along the Texas border. SUNY Upstate is one location where clinical trials for a dengue vaccine are taking place.

Ibarra's international research team found that certain household risk factors, in addition to rainfall and minimum temperature, could be used to predict the presence and abundance of the mosquito that transmits the disease.

"Our findings can help reduce the burden of dengue in this particular region by conducting focused interventions that target high-risk households and containers in each season and by developing predictive models using climate and non-climate information," Ibarra said.

Mosquito control is the only way to dampen the spread of the disease until a vaccination is made available.

"The findings from this study will help public health officials develop mosquito control campaigns that target high-risk households and mosquito habitats in each season," Ibarra said.

The title of Ibarra's study is "Dengue Vector Dynamics (Aedes aegypti) Influenced by Climate and Social Factors in Ecuador: Implications for Targeted Control." Results of the study contributed to a multi-year investigation of climate, the dengue virus and Aedes aegypti in the region of Machala, located in southern coastal Ecuador.