University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers working with Brazilian collaborators have started publicly sharing on a daily basis results and data of a study undertaken to assess Zika viral dynamics in three Indian rhesus macaques.
The study was started on February 15 by principal investigators David O’Connor and Jorge Osorio; the latter was one of the two from the university to identify the Zika virus circulating in Colombia in October.
“Hoping to start understanding Zika virus dynamics in macaques tomorrow. Real-time study results shared at https://goo.gl/IXF79u,” Prof. O’Connor tweeted on February 14. It was quickly followed by another tweet: “Never tried sharing data like this before. Feels like walking into a country for the first time. Exciting, but don’t know what to expect.”
The main objective of studying Zika infection in rhesus macaques is to help understand why the Zika virus has recently been associated with diseases such as microcephaly and to find out if the virus indeed causes the abnormalities. This information will help in the development and evaluation of interventions to minimise future Zika virus-associated disease.