Zika has apparently been around for decades, resulting in minor symptoms, and assuring that most people in the region have antibodies to the virus. Add to the fears surrounding vaccines, genetically modified mosquitoes, and larvacides in drinking water, is the simple fact that so many of the poor drink and bathe in untreated, contaminated water. We know clusters of birth defects and illness have often been tied to local pollution events, and there is known correlation between microcephaly and exposure to a variety of toxic chemicals. Dumping or spills of petrochemical and biofuel chemicals in Brazil's northeast region contribute to water pollution, as does disposal of wastewater related to the sugar cane used in biofuel production. One can't help but wonder if prenatal exposure to toxins found in waterways, especially in the poorer regions surround Recife, have contributed to the microcephaly clusters.
The evidence linking Zika to microcephaly is circumstantial. The real reason may be a case of mercury poisoning. Most of Brazil’s microcephaly cases are in the northeast. Brazilians love fish and gold mining.
Why haven’t they also shown up in proportional numbers in other countries hit hard by Zika, such as Colombia?
See: The National Center for Biotechnology Information advances science website.
Knowledge about the extreme vulnerability of the fetus to methylmercury began with the Minamata Bay, Japan experience. High exposure to methylmercury occurred in Minamata. A chemical company released mercury into Minamata Bay and polluted the bay heavily for decades. Mercury accumulated in the aquatic food chain. The released mercury was methylated in the aquatic food chain leading to high levels of mercury in fish. The local fish was very high in methylmercury, and the local population consumed high amounts of the fish. Eating the fish, pregnant mothers did not only burden themselves, but methylmercury was transferred in utero to the fetus. This caused severe neurological complex symptoms and severe birth defects. While the mothers were usually without symptoms of mercury poisoning, their babies were born severely damaged with microcephaly, cerebral palsy, severe mental retardation,
For nonoccupationally exposed individuals, the main source of methylmercury exposure is through consumption of contaminated fish and shellfish.35 Mercury cannot be eliminated by cooking.
Neurodevelopmental effects in the fetus are associated with maternal exposure. Mercury can also cause neurocognitive deficits and neuromotor disabilities. As mentioned earlier, 3 extensive epidemiologic studies among fish-eating populations have assessed mother– child pairs for prenatal methylmercury exposure and the resulting impact on child development.
Although gold mining is extremely dangerous work for children, tens of thousands of children can be found in the small-scale gold mines of Africa, Asia, and South America. Children work both above and under ground. Mercury is mixed with the crushed ore or sediments to separate out the gold. Mercury is very often mishandled by small-scale miners. It can be absorbed through the skin or through inhalation of mercury vapor. Seeping into the soil or water supply, it can contaminate food and drinking water. Informal gold miners often do not wear protective clothing and most do not know about the proper handling of mercury. In some countries mercury amalgamation is done at home by women, which exposes other family members, including very young children, to mercury.
6-29-16 Quest then asked Farage if he would oppose a Hillary presidency. “There is nothing on Earth that could persuade me ever to vote for Hillary Clinton,” Farage replied. “She represents the political elite. It’s almost as if she feels she has this sort of divine right to have that job.” http://www.infowars.com/ukip-leader-nigel-farage-nothing-on-earth-could-ever-persuade-me-to-vote-for-hillary/