From Mosquito Bites to Sexual Transmission: Evaluating Mouse Models of Zika Virus Infection Journal Articles uri icon

  • Overview
  • Research
  • Identity
  • Additional Document Info
  • View All


  • Following the recent outbreak of Zika virus (ZIKV) infections in Latin America, ZIKV has emerged as a global health threat due to its ability to induce neurological disease in both adults and the developing fetus. ZIKV is largely mosquito-borne and is now endemic in many parts of Africa, Asia, and South America. However, several reports have demonstrated persistent ZIKV infection of the male reproductive tract and evidence of male-to-female sexual transmission of ZIKV. Sexual transmission may broaden the reach of ZIKV infections beyond its current geographical limits, presenting a significant threat worldwide. Several mouse models of ZIKV infection have been developed to investigate ZIKV pathogenesis and develop effective vaccines and therapeutics. However, the majority of these models focus on mosquito-borne infection, while few have considered the impact of sexual transmission on immunity and pathogenesis. This review will examine the advantages and disadvantages of current models of mosquito-borne and sexually transmitted ZIKV and provide recommendations for the effective use of ZIKV mouse models.


  • Balint, Elizabeth
  • Montemarano, Amelia
  • Feng, Emily
  • Ashkar, Ali A

publication date

  • November 8, 2021