Cookie policy: This site uses cookies (small files stored on your computer) to simplify and improve your experience of this website. Cookies are small text files stored on the device you are using to access this website. For more information please take a look at our terms and conditions. Some parts of the site may not work properly if you choose not to accept cookies.

Join

Subscribe or Register

Existing user? Login

Clinical research

Evidence shows Zika virus crosses placental barrier

Amniotic fluid from two pregnant women in Brazil was found to contain Zika virus.

Digitally-colorized transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of the Zika virus. Virus particles, here colored blue, are 40 nm in diameter, with an outer envelope, and an inner dense core

Source: CDC / Cynthia Goldsmith

Zika virus (pictured) was found in the amniotic fluid of two pregnant women in Brazil, proving the virus can cross the placental barrier

Epidemiological data suggest that the outbreak of the Zika virus in Brazil is responsible for a 20-fold increase in the rate of microcephaly among newborn babies. However, clear evidence that the virus can cross the placental barrier and infect the foetus has been lacking. 

Researchers from Brazil report in the Lancet Infectious Diseases (online, 17 February 2016)[1] that they have detected the Zika virus genome in amniotic fluid taken from two pregnant women with symptoms of Zika virus infection whose foetuses were confirmed to have microcephaly. This finding shows the Zika virus can cross the placental barrier, strengthening the link to microcephaly, the team conclude. 

The researchers say their work underlines the importance of controlling the population of the virus’ vector — the Aedes aegypti mosquito — in the absence of a vaccine or effective antivirals.

Citation: Clinical Pharmacist DOI: 10.1211/CP.2016.20200747

Have your say

For commenting, please login or register as a user and agree to our Community Guidelines. You will be re-directed back to this page where you will have the ability to comment.

Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press

Search an extensive range of the world’s most trusted resources

Powered by MedicinesComplete
  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save
  • Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF

Supplementary images

  • Digitally-colorized transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of the Zika virus. Virus particles, here colored blue, are 40 nm in diameter, with an outer envelope, and an inner dense core

Newsletter Sign-up

Want to keep up with the latest news, comment and CPD articles in pharmacy and science? Subscribe to our free alerts.