With the summer season and the context linked to the coronavirus, the fear of mosquitoes could be more important than usual. However, the Higher Institute of Health in Italy (ISS) recently published a study which estimates that mosquitoes cannot transmit Covid-19. If the WHO already communicated on this subject, the Italian study brought scientific proof.
The World Health Organization (WHO) already explained that mosquito bites could not be a source of transmission of Covid-19 (see below). The WHO raised the absence of evidence of contamination but also the fact that it is a respiratory disease. However, the infected droplets represent the main contamination factor.
Nevertheless, the Higher Institute of Health in Italy (ISS) wanted to provide tangible evidence that mosquitoes are unable to transmit the virus. In a press release published on June 26, 2020, the institute in question is formal. Mosquitoes are safe for SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19). This research was carried out in collaboration with the Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute of Venice (IZSVe), a research organization for animal health and food safety.
The study focused on the common mosquito (Culex pipiens) but especially on the dreaded tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus). However, the latter is known to be a vector of dengue fever, chikungunya, zika virus or even yellow fever. By the way, in 2019, this mosquito had colonized a large part of our country and is now under close surveillance. The Italian institute conducted a battery of experimental infection tests to assess the vectorial competence of the two mosquitoes. Here is the researchers’ conclusion:
“The study showed that the virus, once transmitted to the mosquito through a meal of infected blood, is not able to replicate and therefore be transmitted through a bite. “
The ISS and IZSVe will soon publish more results, but the news already makes it possible to definitively rule out the possible role of mosquitoes in the transmission of Covid-19. If only two mosquito species have been tested, it is extremely unlikely that another species will be able to carry the coronavirus. Finally, you should know that this research was very useful for a very simple reason. While WHO has believed from the outset that SARS-CoV-2 cannot be transmitted through mosquito bites, this claim remained in the realm of the hypothesis.
Hugues Louissaint is an entrepreneur and writer, living in the US for over a decade. He has launched successful products such the Marabou Coffee brand, which has been highly successful in Florida. He has also been a writer for more than 5 years focusing on science, technology, and health. He writes part-time for the Scientific Origin and provides valuable input on a wide range of subjects.