Brazil trying to develop vaccine against Zika virus

January 21, 2016
In this Dec. 23, 2015, file photo, 10-year-old Elison nurses his 2-month-old brother Jose Wesley, who was born with microcephaly, at their house in Poco Fundo, Pernambuco state, Brazil. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, that it has found the strongest evidence so far of a possible link between a mosquito-borne virus and a surge of birth defects in Brazil. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana, File)

SAO PAULO (AP) — President Dilma Rousseff says Brazil is trying to develop vaccine against the Zika and dengue viruses.


She says the Health Ministry is working with Brazilian and foreign laboratories to obtain a vaccine against dengue and the Zika viruses that are transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito.


Brazilian officials have linked the Zika virus has been linked to the large number of cases of microcephaly, a rare birth defect.


The Health Ministry has said the number of cases of microcephaly has risen to 3,893 since authorities began investigating the surge in

cases in October.


Rousseff also called on Brazilians to redouble their efforts to eliminate the mosquito and its breeding grounds.


She made her remarks on Thursday during a highway inauguration ceremony in the northeastern state of Pernambuco.