WHO says urgent research needed for strains of Zika

World Health Organization calls for urgent research into different strains of Zika virus, warns more cases are expected

Photo by: Reuters (Archive)
Photo by: Reuters (Archive)

World Health Organization (WHO) Assistant Director-General Marie-Paule Kieny addresses a news conference on Zika virus in Geneva, Switzerland on February 12, 2016.

The World Health Organization (WHO) called on Tuesday for urgent research into different strains of the Zika virus and said that health services in affected areas should be ready for potential increases in the incidence of neurological syndromes and/or congenital malformations.

The United Nations agency, acting on advice from independent experts led by Dr David Heymann, said in a statement that pregnant women "should be advised not to travel to areas with ongoing Zika virus outbreaks," but did not recommend any general trade or travel restrictions.

"We can expect more cases and further geographical spread," WHO Director-General Margaret Chan told a news briefing. "Sexual transmission is more common than previously assumed."

TRTWorld, Reuters