Insect study finds potential for greater transmission of Chagas' disease

03/19/2012 |

Researchers from the University of Vermont found that 38% of kissing bugs collected in Arizona and California had human blood, contradicting previous understanding that species of the insect prevalent in the U.S. generally do not feed on humans. More than half of the bugs harbored Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite behind Chagas' disease, according to a study in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases. While U.S. transmission rates are low, they could rise with climate change, researchers said.

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