The Zika outbreak currently taking place in Central and South America has probably peaked and will be more or less over in about three years, says a new study published in the journal Science. People who are infected with the mosquito-borne virus appear to become immune to getting it a second time, leaving fewer and fewer at risk for infection. Eventually this "herd immunity" makes outbreaks increasingly unlikely, protecting even those who are not immune.
In the meantime, the virus continues to explode across the region. Many who are infected have mild, flulike symptoms (or none at all), but the disease is especially dangerous for pregnant women because it can cause brain damage and other serious problems in fetuses. The U.S. government has warned women who are or are trying to become pregnant about the risk of traveling to the Caribbean or Central or South America, and those who have visited those areas are advised to get tested for Zika, even if they don't have any symptoms.