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Syracuse University

Conspiracy theories muddy Zika public health message

Conspiracy theories muddy Zika public health message

The Zika virus is not being spread by genetically engineered mosquitoes, nor is it transmitted through vaccines. It also is not part of a plan by pharmaceutical companies to boost sales of a future vaccine.

The rumors, conspiracy theories and myths about the virus being shared on social media and by word of mouth are seemingly as contagious as the disease.

Researchers worry that such misinformation could undermine efforts to control Zika's spread and even the public's willingness to accept any vaccine. Public health officials are working to share accurate information about the virus and its risks with the public.

"Once people have made up their minds about...