Florida governor reveals mosquito-transmitted cases, urges pregnant women to be tested.
NEW YORK (AA) - Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Friday announced what appeared to be the first mosquito-borne Zika cases in the continental U.S.
One woman and three men contracted the virus in a one-square-mile area in Dade County, Miami, Scott said in a statement, adding that the individuals have not shown symptoms that would require hospitalization.
The Zika outbreak is particularly dangerous to pregnant women and is linked to microcephaly -- a brain disorder in newborns.
Since the first travel-related Zika case in February, Florida has taken an "aggressive approach" to combat the virus, Scott said.
"Just like with a hurricane, we have worked hard to stay ahead of the spread of Zika and prepare for the worst, even as we hope for the best," he said.
"Now that Florida has become the first state to have a local transmission, likely through a mosquito, we will continue to put every resource available to fighting the spread of Zika in our state," he added.
Scott urged women in the affected area who are pregnant or planning pregnancy to visit local centers to be tested and receive Zika prevention kits.
Zika is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito and can be transferred from a pregnant woman to her fetus.
A vaccine or medicine has yet to be developed for the virus.
Zika, which was first isolated in 1947, has become a pandemic within the span of a year, spreading to almost every South American country.
Fears over contraction have resulted in many athletes and potential attendees avoiding this year's Olympic Games in Brazil, where many cases of Zika and microcephaly have been reported.
The virus is also scientifically linked to another disease -- Guillain-Barre syndrome -- a neurological disorder that could lead to paralysis and death, according to the World Health Organization.