Johanna Yanez sucks Aedes aegypti mosquitoes into a tube from a mosquito cage at a laboratory in Cucuta, Colombia, Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016. (AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan)
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Florzinha Amado is eight months pregnant and trying to stay calm about whether the Zika virus infection she contracted at 21 weeks could have harmed her unborn child.Now, nearly 70 years after its discovery in mainland Africa, it is threatening to return to its roots – this time apparently in a changed form causing large-scale outbreaks.According to new data from Cape Verde's Health Ministry, more than 7,000 cases of Zika have been recorded in the country since the beginning of the epidemic in October 2015, with heavier than normal rains last summer boosting mosquito numbers.Africa is fertile ground for Zika. Researchers have found more than 20 different mosquito species carrying the virus there, although whether they all transmit the disease effectively to humans is unclear.The exact nature of the shift has yet to be unraveled but Mary Kay Kindhauser and colleagues said Zika had altered as it moved through Asia -- from an infection causing limited cases of mild illness to one leading to large outbreaks and, from 2013 onwards, linked to babies born with neurological disorders and abnormally small heads.
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