Da&# Mosquitos!

Da&# Mosquitos!

It’s Summer— and about to be humid and hot, an environment uniquely favorable to the exponential growth and survival of disease-transmitting mosquitos. West Nile Virus, one of the better known arboviruses, is an illness transmitted via a pesky insect to a human host. In comparison, a zoonotic virus is transmitted via an animal to a human- a well-known example of this type of disease is the Ebola virus.

In the vast majority of West Nile cases, upwards of 80%, people infected will be completely asymptomatic. Approximately 20% will develop a mild to moderate illness consisting of fever and body aches predominately, reminiscent of the seasonal flu. Less than 1% of infected persons will actually develop West Nile Encephalitis (WNE) – the much feared but quite rare neurologic progression associated with the virus. So, who in particular is at risk of developing WNE? The elderly mainly – likely because of reduced immune system function t…