Skip to content

Can Mosquitoes Transmit HIV or AIDS?

Mosquitoes are infamous for transmitting dangerous diseases. This is due to the fact that mosquitoes are vectors for diseases that they get from biting an infected human or animal. But what happens when a mosquito bites someone who is HIV-positive? Thankfully, mosquitoes cannot transmit HIV or AIDS. This is due to both the biology of the mosquito and of HIV itself:

  • Mosquitoes are unable to become infected with HIV, and thus cannot transmit it.
  • A mosquito’s proboscis has two tubes: one to suck blood from its host and the other to inject saliva into the bite. Because only saliva is injected into the host, HIV cannot be transmitted through the bite.
  • Even if a mosquito has HIV in its body when it bites a host, there would not be enough to infect. The virus disappears in the mosquito after just one or two days.
Mosquito sucking blood off human up close

Do Mosquitoes Transfer Blood?

Although mosquitoes suck blood, they do not inject or circulate it back into you. This is due to their unique proboscis. Made up of two tubes, one tube sends saliva into the host while the other sucks up blood. This two-tube system is why mosquitoes cannot transmit HIV, which is transmitted through infected blood. Any HIV-positive blood ingested by a mosquito is thus impossible to transmit to another host.

How Long Does HIV Live in a Mosquito?

When a mosquito bites an HIV-positive individual, the virus will disappear in just 1-2 days, which is the time required for a mosquito to digest the blood. This is because HIV is unable to replicate within the mosquito’s gut, unlike humans in which HIV binds to T cells. It is during the mosquito’s digestion process that any HIV ingested is completely destroyed.

Have Mosquitoes Ever Transmitted HIV?

Bottom line: you do not need to worry about mosquitoes transmitting HIV. Research has proven that an individual would have to be bitten by 10 million mosquitoes that all had been feeding on an HIV carrier for even a single unit of HIV to be transmitted. When it comes to mosquitoes and diseases, it’s important to focus on the vector-borne diseases they do carry and spread.

Can Mosquitoes Transmit HIV or AIDS? Serving Charlotte, Raleigh, Greensboro, and Durham

Winston-Salem | Fayetteville | Cary | Wilmington | High Point | Jacksonville | Chapel Hill | Huntersville | Apex | Wake Forest | Morrisville | Holly Springs | Chesapeake | Suffolk VA | Norfolk VA | Newport News VA | Hampton VA