SPENCER SUTTON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPENCER SUTTON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
This illustration depicts the transmission cycles implemented by the disease known as Chikungunya fever. The virus responsible for the disease is a member of the genus Alphavirus, in the family Togaviridae. This particular diagram lays out the modes of possible transmission in Africa. Chikungunya virus is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on a person infected with chikungunya virus. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other humans when they bite. Monkeys, and possibly other wild animals, may also serve as reservoirs of the virus. Aedes aegypti (the yellow fever mosquito), a species of mosquito that breeds in household containers, is an aggressive biter during the day, and is attracted to humans for bloodmeals.
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