Zika virus (ZIKV) infection has caused the most challenging worldwide infectious epidemic outbreak in recent months. ZIKV causes microcephaly and other congenital malformations. There is a need to perform updated systematic reviews on ZIKV infection periodically because this epidemic is bringing up new evidence with extraordinary speed. Areas covered: Evidence related to ZIKV infection in the gestational, perinatal, and early infant periods covering epidemiology, virology, pathogenesis, risk factors, time of infection during pregnancy, newborn symptoms, treatment, and vaccines. To this end, a search was performed using terms ['Zika'] AND ['Perinatal Infection'] OR ['Congenital Infection'] in the PubMed® international electronic database. Out of a total of 1,538 articles published until 30 November 2017, we finally assessed 106 articles articles that were relevant to the research areas included in this study. Expert commentary: ZIKV is a new teratogenic/neurotropic virus affecting fetuses. Many challenges are still far from being solved regarding the epidemiology, case definition, clinical and laboratory diagnosis, and preventive measures. An approach using 'omics' and new biomarkers for diagnosis, and a ZIKV-vaccine for treatment, might finally give us the tools to solve these challenges.
Keywords: Arbovirus infection; Zika virus; maternal-fetal infection transmission; teratogen.