General Article What are vectors?

Topic Selected: Global Health
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Vectors are living organisms that can transmit infectious diseases between humans or from animals to humans. Many of these vectors are bloodsucking insects that ingest disease-producing micro-organisms during a blood meal from an infected host (human or animal) and later inject them into a new host during their next blood meal. Mosquitoes are the best known disease vector. Others include certain species of ticks, flies, sandflies, fleas, bugs and freshwater snails.

More than half the world at risk

Vector-borne diseases are illnesses caused by pathogens and parasites in human populations. Every year more than one billion people are infected and more than one million people die from vector-borne diseases including malaria, dengue, schistosomiasis, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, yellow fever, lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis.

One sixth of the illness and disability suffered worldwide is due to vector-bo

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