CDC Officials Helping Students with Mosquito Born Diseases

Local News

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are in the to help students properly identify disease carrying mosquitoes.

Jose Estrada-Franco, CDC Senior Entomologist said, “We have here a group of students. One of the best students we have selected, to learn some of those techniques and also to be able to help in the future, with the control of the diseases that are being transmitted by many of these mosquitoes.”

It is a new collaboration between students from the University of Texas El Paso and UTRGV.

Adam Vera, UTEP Graduate student, “Here at this training they learn how to identify a mosquito morphologically. Which means, they can determine the species, and they can determine whether it’s a medically important species.”

Over the next few years this group of students will learn how to protect mosquito-prone regions like the RGV from virus infections like Zika, Dengue, and Chikungunya. But aside from college students, the CDC is working closely with their Mexican counterparts.

Jose Estra-Franco, “It’s an entity that focuses on exactly the same kind of work that the Centers for Disease Control is doing in the United States.”

On this side of the border, the city of McAllen jumped at the opportunity to prepare for additional cases of Zika.

Josh Ramirez, McAllen Health Director, “Mosquito season is coming up, by the summer. So, we want to make sure we have the most up to date, latest training in mosquito identification, mosquito trapping, mosquito packing shipping, and lab training that is required.”

McAllen is also working with the CDC on how to deal with chemical resistance and learning new areas of mosquito research. The CDC will also be working with McAllen city employees on how to accurately place traps for mosquito eggs.

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