Already implicated in cases of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome, Zika viruswould be also responsible for inflammation of the central nervous system. Thousands of infected people well made it us understand: Zika virus is not to be taken lightly. The link already certified with Guillain-Barré syndrome and cases of microcephalyin babies had already earned him the status of global emergency for World Health(who) Organization, but new discoveries further darken the table. In Brazil, one of the countries most affected by Aedes mosquitoes that transmit the virus, as well as inthe whole of Latin America and the Caribbean, doctors found the appearance of acute encephalomyelitis scattered in two patients.
This autoimmune disease causes lesions at the level of the myelin sheath that protects the nervous system. Usually it disappears quickly and leaves no sequelae, but inthis case, encephalomyelitis has altered the white matter of the brain as well as thearea of the spinal cord.
A hypothesis to be tested
This observation has been prepared by the team of Maria Lucia Brito Ferreira, neurologist at a hospital in the city of Recife, in Brazil, after analyzing data of 151 patientscontaminated by the family of viruses which part Zika, between December 2014 andJune 2015. In a group of six patients all tested positive for the virus and with fever and a rash, four have developed Guillain-Barré syndrome, while two have developedan acute disseminated encephalomyelitis. These results were presented at the annual conference of the American Academy of Neurology, April 10.
"However, this study does not allow to identify a causal link between the virus and these disorders. Researchers therefore call towards new studies to prove or refute their hypothesis", reported Le Figaro. On the other hand, officials of the US Centers for control and prevention of diseases (CDC) are mobilizing to request additional funds for research in the Government of their country. "What we are investigating on this virus appears to be a little more worrisome than what we originally thought," saidAnne Schuchat, Deputy Director of the CDC, cited by Le Monde.