a mosquito specialist expects “greater” circulation of the virus this summer with the Olympic Games

Entomologist Didier Fontenille assured Franceinfo on Tuesday that “each time there are population movements the risk increases”.


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The tiger mosquito can carry diseases such as dengue, chikungunya or Zika, potentially fatal viruses.  (PHILIPPE LAMBERT / MAXPPP)

“We expect more viruses to be imported this year because there are more travelers”entomologist Didier Fontenille, mosquito specialist and research director at IRD, declared Tuesday April 23 on franceinfo, while a record number of cases of dengue fever has been imported since the beginning of 2024, with nearly 1,700 cases.

According to the entomologist, with the Paris Olympic Games during the summer, “it is inevitable” that people who have not traveled are contaminated. “A small proportion of people who come to France will carry the dengue virus, and a small proportion of these will be bitten by mosquitoes who will transmit it to people who have not moved,” he explains.

“Every time there are population movements and travelers traveling, particularly in the summer, the risk increases”according to him, adding that “France faces an additional risk with overseas territories, in particular the Antilles, where dengue fever circulates every year.” However, Didier Fontenille recalls that “Most cases are not serious, with fevers and significant fatigue. But in one case in 2,000, it can lead to death.”

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