Brazilian scientists says that they have found the Zika virus in a wild-caught Aedes aegypti mosquito, providing the first evidence to support the government’s theory of how the disease is being transmitted in the country.
Despite the fact that world health authorities have said for months that the mosquito species is the main vector for Zika, it was proven that Aedes aegypti has been carrying the virus.
The Brazilian researchers collected nearly 1,500 adult mosquitoes over 10 months, around half of them Aedes aegypti. The latter were the only ones in which Zika was detected.
Brazil is in the grip of a Zika epidemic, with a new strain of the once-benign virus causing devastating fetal brain defects.
There are 1,332 confirmed cases of fetal Zika syndrome, and another 3,332 under investigation.
The health ministry has reported 1,384 babies had been born with the condition and 59 had died since the outbreak began.
The Zika virus can also be transmitted through unprotected sex with an infected person, health officials have said.
The World Health Organization has said there is also strong scientific consensus that Zika can also cause Guillain-Barre, a rare neurological syndrome that causes temporary paralysis in adults.