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USEastern equine encephalitis virus found in Florida chickens

18:35  14 august  2019
18:35  14 august  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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Sentinel chickens are used for disease prevention research and are tested regularly for Eastern equine encephalitis and the West Nile virus . While infections typically rise in the summer, transmission can occur any month of the year, Alto said. Just because the disease was found in

Florida health officials are warning of an uptick in a mosquito-borne virus known as Eastern equine Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what's happening in the world as it unfolds. Several sentinel chickens tested positive for EEE, which can spread to humans via infected mosquitoes and

STUART, Fla. – Several Florida chickens recently tested positive for a mosquito-borne virus known to sometimes cause fatal brain infection and swelling.

Eastern equine encephalitis virus found in Florida chickens© CONTRIBUTED BY ERICK GILL/ST. LUCIE COUNTY The St. Lucie Mosquito Control District uses chicken flocks as part of an early warning program to detect the presence of St. Louis encephalitis, eastern equine encephalitis and West Nile viruses. Several chickens have recently tested positive for antibodies for West Nile virus in rural areas of St. Lucie County. There are currently no confirmed human cases in the county.

According to a statement released Thursday by the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, several sentinel chickens recently contracted Eastern equine encephalitis virus and had antibodies present in their system to fight the disease.

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Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), commonly called Triple E or, sleeping sickness (not to be confused with trypanosomiasis) is a zoonotic alphavirus and arbovirus present in North, Central

Eastern Equine Encephalitis is found in North America, Central and South America and the Caribbean. In the United States , most cases have Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus was first isolated in the United States in 1933. The risk of exposure has been increasing as people move into

Sentinel chickens are used for disease prevention research and are tested regularly for Eastern equine encephalitis and the West Nile virus.

Encephalitis symptoms usually emerge between four and 10 days after the bite, which usually include fever, disorientation and vomiting, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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About 30 percent of people infected with Eastern equine encephalitis die from the disease.

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The only way to prevent eastern equine encephalitis virus , which causes brain-swelling and has a high mortality rate, is to avoid mosquito bites. Amanda Carrozza at American Veterinarian reports that Florida began deploying sentinel chickens in the battle against viruses beginning in 1978 to get

Florida ’s state health department issued a warning last week about the spread of Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) after officials found the virus in “several sentinel chickens in the same flock.” “There has been an increase in mosquito-borne disease activity in areas of Orange County

Barry Alto, an associate professor at the University of Florida Medical Entomological Laboratory in Vero Beach, said the black-tailed mosquito is the primary carrier of encephalitis.

This species is most active near swampland during hot, damp summer months and typically bites during the two hours after sunset.

While infections typically rise in the summer, transmission can occur any month of the year, Alto said. Just because the disease was found in Orange County does not mean it is isolated, and it could spread around the state.

The Treasure Coast is no stranger to mosquito-borne illnesses. West Nile virus was found in sentinel chickens in Martin County in 2018. Populations of these chickens are scattered across the state and experts are always monitoring the severity of contamination, Alto said.

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It also stands for eastern equine encephalitis . The Florida Department of Health in Orange County has issued a warning about the latter EEE and not Orlando Bloom. Several chickens in the state have tested positive for EEE virus infections.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis is a rare disease that is caused by a virus spread by infected mosquitoes. Only a few cases are reported in the United States each year. Most occur in eastern or Gulf Coast states . Approximately 30% of people with EEE die and many survivors have ongoing

"This is a very serious virus," Alto said. "You do not want to get infected with this."

Even if the infection is not fatal, encephalitis can have life-long debilitating effects, including mental disorientation and brain damage, Alto said.

Preventing the disease with insecticide has proven difficult, as many mosquito populations are in protected areas that cannot be treated with the repellent.

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There are at least 10 cases of encephalitis in humans each year, Alto said. Florida's sub-tropical climate and geography can make it an epicenter for disease contraction.

Health officials said they will continue to monitor the infections and research prevention efforts. Florida Health reminds everyone to take the basic precautions necessary to avoid mosquito bites.

"Floridians should be paying attention to this," Alto said. "Avoid being bitten by covering up with clothes and repellent."

Follow Max Chesnes on Twitter @MaxChesnes.

This article originally appeared on Treasure Coast Newspapers: Eastern equine encephalitis virus found in Florida chickens

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