Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 12-7-2017


The recent upsurge in the association of congenital neurological disorders and infection by the Zika virus (ZIKV) has resulted in increased research focus on the biology of this flavivirus. Studies in animal models indicate that ZIKV can breach the placental barrier and selectively infect and deplete neuroprogenitor cells (NPCs) of the developing fetus, resulting in changes of brain structures, reminiscent of human microcephaly. In vitro and ex vivo studies using human cells and tissues showed that human NPCs and placental cells are targeted by ZIKV. Also of concern is the impact of ZIKV on human reproductive structures, with the potential to cause infertility, as the virus appears to remain in the genital tract for extended periods of time. This review discusses the putative roles of ZIKV on human reproductive complications and congenital neuropathologies.

Available for download on Monday, September 07, 2020