News & Politics

Zika May Pose Long-Term Memory Damage Threat to Adults

(AP Photo/Felipe Dana, File)

Not just a threat to infants anymore?

The Zika virus may cause long-term damage to the memory which mirrors the effects of Alzheimer’s disease a new study suggests.

Scientists had thought that the virus only impacted the brains of developing foetuses and did not believe an infection posed serious problems for adults.

But a new study suggests that Zika can also infect the brain cells of adults, causing long term damage to memory.

“Zika can clearly enter the brain of adults and can wreak havoc,” said Professor Sujan Shresta, a member of the team from the La Jolla Institute of Allergy and Immunology in California, USA.

“But it’s a complex disease – it’s catastrophic for early brain development, yet the majority of adults who are infected with Zika rarely show detectable symptoms.

“Its effect on the adult brain may be more subtle, and now we know what to look for.”

This is why there really isn’t any way to be “too cautious” with virus health scares that are suddenly on the move. At first, concerns about Zika in the U.S. were dismissed by many because it was only a problem in other countries. Then some homegrown cases showed up in Florida. Now we find out the threat may be greater and take longer to manifest itself in some cases.

Who knows what we will find out about it tomorrow?

Gosh, if only there were some sort of magical chemical developed in the 20th century that could kill mosquitoes…