Warm Oceans and Disease: A Link

© 1999 by Linda Moulton Howe

July 21, 1999 Greenbelt, Maryland ­ In last week's journal Science, scientists at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland reported the first confirmed link between warm ocean surface temperatures in the Pacific and Indian oceans with epidemics of Rift Valley Fever in Africa. Goddard senior earth scientist, Compton Tucker, Ph.D., said, "We feel that the links are solid and the associations are clear."

The warming ocean waters begins with El Nino in the Pacific which produces more rain in parts of Africa. More rain means more mosquitoes, specifically the Aedes mosquito.

Photo Credit: Aedes mosquito, a species that carries different viruses, including the virus responsible for Rift Valley Fever which causes hemorrhaging and can be fatal.
Photo Credit: Aedes mosquito, a species that carries different viruses, including the virus responsible for Rift Valley Fever which causes hemorrhaging and can be fatal.

 

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© 1998 - 2018 by Linda Moulton Howe.
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