A fly may act as a mechanical vector of diseases such as Hepatitis A, which means the fly carries the infective organism on its feet or mouth parts and contaminates food or water which a person then consumes. A biological vector actually develops an infective organism in its body and passes it along to its host, usually through its saliva. A fly can be a biological vector, as in the transmission of leishmaniasis by the sandfly.
Last reviewed 10/16/2011 by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. and George F. Longstreth, MD, Department of Gastroenterology, Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, San Diego, California.
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