MSU Researcher Breaking Dengue Fever
Like malaria, dengue fever is an infectious disease transmitted by mosquitoes. Unlike malaria, there is no vaccine for it. As many as 100 million people contract dengue each year, but MSU researcher Zhiyong Xi is working to change that.
Among the estimated 2.5 billion people at risk for dengue, more than 70 percent live in Asia Pacific countries, which spurred Xi to establish a collaborative research institute at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China.
There, Xi and his colleagues have made a promising breakthrough. They’ve determined that the Wolbachia bacterium can stop the dengue virus from replicating in the mosquitoes that are the primary transmitters of the disease.
Once the researchers pinpoint the mechanisms responsible for interrupting virus replication, they’ll be able to improve the efficiency of the interference—a critical step in breaking the fever.
SOURCE: PRESS RELEASE, MSU TODAY