Infections of West Nile virus could set U.S. record

September 28, 2012 by Michael C. Purdy, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

This year, infections with West Nile virus are on pace to be one of the worst years yet. Scientists speculate, but cannot yet prove, that the surge in infections may be attributable to warm spring temperatures across much of the country, which allowed the mosquitoes that spread the virus to begin breeding early.

For most people, West Nile infections do not cause symptoms. But in people 50 and older and those with weakened immune systems, West Nile can potentially become life-threatening. Infection rates tend to peak in July, August and September, but the season can continue well into the fall, especially in warmer regions.

expert Michael Diamond, MD, PhD, professor of and of medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, is working to develop better treatments for the virus. He talks about this year's West Nile and offers tips for avoiding the virus. 

Explore further: West Nile virus on the rise in US: CDC

Related Stories

West Nile virus on the rise in US: CDC

August 2, 2012
(HealthDay) -- With 241 cases of West Nile virus and four related deaths reported so far this year, the United States is experiencing the biggest spike in the mosquito-borne illness since 2004, health officials report.

Recommended for you

Building better tiny kidneys to test drugs and help people avoid dialysis

February 16, 2018
A free online kidney atlas built by USC researchers empowers stem cell scientists everywhere to generate more human-like tiny kidneys for testing new drugs and creating renal replacement therapies.

Expanding Hepatitis C testing to all adults is cost-effective and improves outcomes

February 16, 2018
According to a new study, screening all adults for hepatitis C (HCV) is a cost-effective way to improve clinical outcomes of HCV and identify more infected people compared to current recommendations. Using a simulation model, ...

Study suggests expanded range for emerging tick-borne disease

February 16, 2018
Human cases of Borrelia miyamotoi, a tick-borne infection with some similarities to Lyme disease, were discovered in the eastern United States less than a decade ago. Now new research led by the Yale School of Public Health ...

Flu shot only 36 percent effective, making bad year worse (Update)

February 15, 2018
The flu vaccine is doing a poor job protecting older Americans and others against the bug that's causing most illnesses.

IFN-mediated immunity to influenza A virus infection influenced by RIPK3 protein

February 15, 2018
Each year, influenza kills half a million people globally with the elderly and very young most often the victims. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 37 children have died in the United States ...

A new class of drug to treat herpes simplex virus-1 infection

February 14, 2018
For patients with the herpes simplex-1 virus (HSV-1), there are just a handful of drugs available to treat the painful condition that can affect the eyes, mouth and genitals.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.