Zika may be linked to acute disseminated encephalomyelitis: Researchers

The Zika virus may be associated with an autoimmune disorder that attacks the brain’s myelin similar to multiple sclerosis, according to a small study that is being released today and will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 68th Annual Meeting in Vancouver, Canada, April 15 to 21, 2016.

Aedes mosquito

Aedes aegypti image/CDC

“Though our study is small, it may provide evidence that in this case the virus has different effects on the brain than those identified in current studies,” said study author Maria Lucia Brito Ferreira, MD, with Restoration Hospital in Recife, Brazil. “Much more research will need to be done to explore whether there is a causal link between Zika and these brain problems.”

For the study, researchers followed people who came to the hospital in Recife from December 2014 to June 2015 with symptoms compatible with arboviruses, the

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