An Asian mosquito species has the potential to spread malaria to at least 126 million people, according to a report published Monday.
Africa, which has more than 90% of the world’s malaria cases, typically sees malaria transmission through native mosquito species such as the Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto, Anopheles coluzzi and Anopheles funestus sensu stricto, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These species are typically found in rural areas and thrive in wet habitats, per the CDC.
“This mosquito is unlike any other primary malaria vector found in Africa – it can live in urban areas that other species just don’t like,” Dr. Marianne Sinka of the University of Oxford told The Guardian.
“As about 40% of Africa’s population live in urban areas, this means there are a lot of people who are currently protected by their environment that could become exposed-if the mosquito spreads,” Sinka continued.
This strain of mosquito is commonly found in India and Pakistan, and can breed in