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Disease-Carrying Mosquito Threatens Human Health In North America

First Posted: Nov 09, 2015 03:25 PM EST

A new species of disease-carrying mosquitoes has been identified by researchers from the Simon Fraser University and Culex Environmental, a Burnaby-based mosquito control company in Canada.

The researchers identified the meddling pest as Aedes japonicas, which was found in Western Canada for the first time, according to a news release.

Aedes japonicas is an Asian bush mosquito, which is a carrier of several viruses. The invasive species was first identified in Germany in 2008 by researchers. This species of mosquitoes have been spreading in various regions ever since, and their population has expanded significantly. Human activities have also influenced the mosquitoes' geographical expansion.

This species of mosquito was discovered in parts of Eastern Canada and the U.S. in 1998. The researchers are studying the insects' DNA with the intent of finding new clues.

This type of mosquito could be a potential threat to human health worldwide, especially since global warming further influences its' development and the spreading of severe viruses like chikungunya and encephalitis, which has complicated fever, aches and flu-like symptoms.

The findings of this study were published in in the Journal of Medical Entomology.

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