Zika capable of surviving on hard, non-porous surfaces, researchers say
Researchers with RMC Pharmaceutical Solutions found the virus can survive on hard, non-porous surfaces for as long as eight hours and possibly longer when there is blood. They also said they had one documented case of a person who contracted the virus through laboratory exposure. The researchers also looked into how to kill the virus when its on a hard, non-porous surface. Disinfectants such as isopropyl alcohol and quaternary ammonium/alcohol were generally effective, according to the researchers who were on consultancy for Microbac Laboratories. The research was presented Tuesday at the 2016 American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists annual meeting and exposition in Denver.
Zika virus causes syndrome of devastating birth defects
MIAMI – As Zika continues to spread in Florida, researchers released more details about the pattern of birth defects now known as the Zika syndrome and how the virus could be linked to infertility in men. As of Friday, Florida reported there were 1,128 reported infections -- including 133 involving pregnant women. Meanwhile, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention researchers described the birth defects in a report released Thursday in JAMA Pediatrics. Most of the descriptions of Zika-affected babies' suffering from the congenital syndrome are from Brazil, the hardest-hit country. Their study involved mice infected with a strain of the virus.
Protesters gather outside Miami Beach City Hall, want aerial mosquito spraying to end
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Protesters gathered Wednesday morning inside and outside Miami Beach City Hall to express their concerns about the chemical being used in aerial mosquito spraying efforts to eradicate the Zika virus. Wednesday's city commission meeting was so packed that some protesters had to sit outside and watch the meeting on TV screens. The meeting was tense, at times sounding more like a sporting event than a city commission meeting. Miami Beach Commissioner Michael Grieco has publicly criticized the use of the chemical in the county's aerial spraying. "Somebody has to be the grown up here, and I don't think it's commissioner Grieco," Rosen Gonzalez said.
Zika virus can remain in sperm for 6 months
MIAMI – Mosquitoes are not the only ones spreading the Zika virus in Florida. The disease is also spreading through unprotected sex. But epidemiologists are still trying to figure out how long the virus can remain in semen. The first known case of the Zika virus through sexual contact in the U.S. was reported earlier this year in Texas. The CDC hasn't found any evidence that women are spreading the virus through unprotected sex.
Wynwood businesses impacted by Zika scares
WYNWOOD, Fla. – It was business as usual at LAB Miami in Wynwood on Monday night. "It's being put out there like 'The Zika virus oh my God,'" a business owner said at a meeting Monday morning about marketing in the middle of the Zika scare. "I would say we've lost about 10 percent of our revenue, we've taken a major hit," a business owner said. Health officials say no local mosquitoes have tested positive for Zika. "I think it's a bit alarmist, I think it's also a political football right now with the funding of Zika," Fernandez said.
Beware of ultrasonic repellents to protect against Zika
MIAMI – There is no reliable evidence to show that commercially available ultrasonic mosquito repellents are efficient, health authorities say. Products like the STAR Ultrasonic Pest Repeller, the Ultrasonic Mosquito & Bug Repellent Keychain and the Anti Mosquito Sonic Repeller app use a technology that relies on the mosquito's reaction to sound. New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman issued a warning to the manufacturer of the STAR Ultrasonic Pest Repeller and several others. The designers of ultrasonic mosquito repellents believe the feathery antennae attached to the mosquito's head will pick up on the sound and scare them away. To protect from mosquito bites, the CDC recommends the use of insect repellents that contain DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.
Mosquito-repellent clothes fight back Zika threat
MIAMI – With the Zika virus warnings, Miami's latest fashion trend is mosquito-repellent clothing. Officials suggest that the clothing be worn over non-treated underwear and that it be washed separately. White pants, about $85, by Ex Officio: The design also comes in two other colors. Hoody, $60, by Ex Officio: This lightweight design partially protects hands and comes in six colors . Long sleeve plaid shirt, $85, by Ex Officio: It comes in four colors.
Natural repellents help chemophobes keep Zika mosquitoes away
Good news for them is that the stinky lemon eucalyptus oil, also known as its synthetic PMD, comes from a tall tree from Australia. Health officials warn the lemon eucalyptus oil should not be used on children under the age of three. They are less reliable than the lemon eucalyptus oil, so they need to be reapplied more frequently. - Intelligent Nutrients Smart Armor by Organaca, $29, contains citronella and claims to be "nontoxic" and organic. - Natural Bug Blend by California Baby, $15.79, contains citronella, lemongrass and cedar oils.