Texas Driving Research Efforts to Control Zika Virus

insects-820485_960_720The first case of Ebola detected in the United States was in Dallas. The largest epidemic of West Nile virus in the country was in Dallas. Now, one of the first cases of the Zika virus has been reported … in Dallas.

Posing the question, why the target on Dallas?

Indeed, city leaders claim of attracting businesses and people from all over the world. Undeniably, Dallas is well linked and has a thriving economy, an increasing population and one of the busiest airports on the planet. However, it seems multiple microbes got that memo too. Seemingly, what makes Dallas alluring to people also entices diseases.

Each day, the airport launches and lands circa 9,000 passengers to and from countries with occurrences of the Zika virus. With near to 300 flights each week to Mexico alone, authorities are right when they say the area is highly connected.

Nonetheless, as a result of the state’s history with diseases, innovation against mosquitoes and the viruses they spread continues to take place in the state. In fact, Texas is leading the efforts to control Zika virus. The Zika outbreak has become a public health crisis since researchers here linked the mosquito-borne virus to a surge in a rare birth defects compromising infants’ brains. Consequently, the rapid spread of Zika is spurring efforts to find a vaccine.

As of this week, the Texas Research hospital has signed an agreement with Brazil to develop a vaccine against the Zika virus. The goal is to have the vaccine ready for clinical trials within a year and market-ready in three years. The research will be jointly conducted by the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston and the Evandro Chagas Institute in the Amazonian city of Belem — two facilities specializing in study of mosquito viruses.

Thus, as the above reveals, research such as this is vital in improving innovation in disease management that could have a substantial impact on the Zika virus. Moreover, with the increased connectivity around the globe and cases of the disease spreading, research into vaccines is becoming more central.

Ultimately, research can be used to reveal new facets of knowledge and solve problems to a broad range of problems. Although, research doesn’t need to be confined to being ‘white lab coat’ work or to finding the cure of the Zika virus. In fact, if you have led research in your company then you could be eligible for the government’s Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit. The credit is purposely broad to encourage businesses in the U.S. to undertake research activities and is offered at both a state and federal level in Texas. Contact Texas Tax Credit today to find out if your research could qualify for tax benefits.