Analysis of Zika Virus Sequence Data Associated with a School Cohort in Haiti

Md Mahbubul Alam, Carla Mavian, Bernard A. Okech, Sarah K. White, Caroline J. Stephenson, Maha A. Elbadry, Gabriela M. Blohm, Julia C. Loeb, Rigan Louis, Cyrus Saleem, Valery E. Madsen Beau de Rochars, Marco Salemi, John A. Lednicky, J. Glenn Morris

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Zika virus (ZIKV) infections occurred in epidemic form in the Americas in 2014-2016, with some of the earliest isolates in the region coming from Haiti. We isolated ZIKV from 20 children with acute undifferentiated febrile illness who were part of a cohort of children seen at a school clinic in the Gressier region of Haiti. The virus was also isolated from three pools of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes collected at the same location. On phylogenetic analysis, three distinct ZIKV clades were identified. Strains from all three clades were present in Haiti in 2014, making them among the earliest isolates identified in the Western Hemisphere. Strains from all three clades were also isolated in 2016, indicative of their persistence across the time period of the epidemic. Mosquito isolates were collected in 2016 and included representatives from two of the three clades; in one instance, ZIKV was isolated from a pool of male mosquitoes, suggestive of vertical transmission of the virus. The identification of multiple ZIKV clades in Haiti at the beginning of the epidemic suggests that Haiti served as a nidus for transmission within the Caribbean.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)873-880
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number4
StatePublished - 12 Oct 2022
Externally publishedYes


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