Australia’s next public health threat has wings, and it’s already landing.
There’s a perfect storm brewing that could increase the risk of mosquito-borne disease for millions of Australians.
The Aedes aegypti mosquito (a principal vector of viruses such as yellow fever, dengue, Chikungunya and Zika) is already established in Australia’s tropical north, but global warming is now enabling the species to expand its geographical range.
In addition, the threat of importing other dangerous species, such as Aedes albopictus, has never been so high. Aedes albopictus is endemic in the Torres Strait, just 150km away from our shores. If they manage to take hold on the Australian mainland, their tolerance for cooler climates could enable them to reproduce year-round – even in the southern states.
This episode we are joined by Professor Andrew Taylor-Robinson, an infectious disease immunologist specialising in mosquito-borne pathogens at Central Queensland University and Charles Darwin University.
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