Images: Clipartpanda and Ryan McGuire @ Unsplash
The Zika virus is no longer only transmissible via mosquito sting and sex. According to a recent study published by Cell Reports
, the tears of a Zika patient may carry the germ too!
Armed with the knowledge that one-third of Zika-infected babies also suffer from eye diseases such as retinal damage, while the adults get pink eye, a team of researchers at US' Washington University launched a series of experiments. Adult mice were injected with the virus and seven days later, it was detected in their eyes.
"Our study suggests that the eye could be a reservoir for Zika virus," said Michael Diamond, a Washington University School of Medicine professor.
While the live virus was only present in the mice's eyes and not tears, scientists are not completely convinced yet. "That doesn't mean that it couldn't be infectious in humans. There could be a window of time when tears are highly infectious and people are coming in contact with it and able to spread it," explained Jonathan Miner, also a Medicine professor at the same institution.
To learn more about Zika and how you can protect yourself from it, read our article here