Kissing Bug Could Be Deadly for Valley Residents

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011 - 8:34am

RIO GRANDE VALLEY - An insect known as the Kissing Bug may be carrying the kiss of death and some researchers are worried it may make it's way into the Valley.

The insect is called Chinches and are also known as the kissing bug because they usually bite humans in the face in the evening. The insect draws blood from the bite and then drops feces into the wound which may carry a parasite known to cause Chagas disease. Chagas disease may cause a deadly heart attack 10 to 15 years after the insect's bite. Several cases have been reported in Reynosa, Mexico and researchers are keeping a close eye for reports in the Valley.

UTPA Biology Assistant Professor Teresa Patrica Feria stated, "They have to look at the pattern. Some of them look similar but if you look at them they have different coloration. They have different colorations in the abdomen. If you come across any these insects you're urged to send a picture to tpferia@utpa.com

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