The recent West Nile Virus outbreaks in Texas and across the United States have called attention to the strong links between tropical diseases and poverty, both in the United States and abroad. In an editorial published in the Sunday, September 2 edition of the Houston Chronicle, Dr. Hotez and his co-author, Dr. Kristy Murray of Baylor College of Medicine, called for more disease surveillance, education for healthcare providers and greater engagement by product development partnerships such as the Sabin PDP to respond to these urgent public health issues:
A debate is emerging about the potential use of genetically modified (GM) mosquitoes to combat dengue in the United States and in other countries around the world. Most recently, news out of Brazil indicated that the country plans to breed GM mosquitoes to stop the spread of dengue.
The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) held a special event yesterday on World Hepatitis Day, recognizing three-time GRAMMY award winner Jon Secada for his work to bring about hepatitis awareness in the Americas. During the event, Jon Secada spoke about his personal experience losing his father to hepatitis C last year. He also spoke of his commitment to educating people in the Americas on the hepatitis viruses throughout his career and through the organization- along with Gregg Allman and Natalie Cole- “Tune In to Hep C”.
Brazil’s health ministry recently announced its plan to breed genetically modified mosquitoes to stop the spread of dengue fever. According to news reports, scientists are focusing intensely on mosquito control because there is currently no vaccine to protect against dengue.
Sri Lanka is one of the latest countries to experience an alarming rise in dengue cases. Recent news out of the country has been filled with stories of dengue prevention efforts and updates on the rapid spread of the disease.