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Special Issue "Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases"

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A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 February 2015)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Shlomit Paz

Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +972-54-6408097
Fax: +972-4-8249605
Interests: climatology; climate change; climate change impacts on the human health; environmental health; environmental issues in the mediterranean basin

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

According to the recent IPCC report (2013), “the warming of the climate system is unequivocal and, since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia”.

This warming trend has many global and local aspects; one of which is the impact on human health. Indeed, climate change is a complex phenomenon that affects human health via a pathway of varying complexity, scale and directness and with different timing. The impacts vary geographically as a function of physical and environmental conditions and of the vulnerability of the local human population.

Consequently, climatic change influences the emergence of vector-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue and West Nile virus by altering their rates, ranges, distribution and seasonality.

Vector-borne diseases are dynamic systems with complex ecology, which tend to adjust continually to environmental changes in multifaceted ways. Although climate is one of several factors that influence the distribution of these diseases, it is known as a major environmental driver influencing their epidemiology. Moreover, the importance of climatic factors (such as temperature, precipitation, relative humidity and winds) as drivers in the epidemiology of vector-borne diseases is increasing under conditions of climate change.

This Special Issue in IJERPH aims to advance the understanding of the various impacts of local and global climatic changes on the ecology and epidemiology of vector-borne diseases.

Dr. Shlomit Paz
Guest Editor

Submission

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed Open Access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs).

Keywords

  • climate change
  • global warming
  • vector-borne diseases
  • human health

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Impacts of Climate Change on Vector Borne Diseases in the Mediterranean Basin — Implications for Preparedness and Adaptation Policy
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(6), 6745-6770; doi:10.3390/ijerph120606745
Received: 28 February 2015 / Accepted: 9 June 2015 / Published: 15 June 2015
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (780 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The Mediterranean region is vulnerable to climatic changes. A warming trend exists in the basin with changes in rainfall patterns. It is expected that vector-borne diseases (VBD) in the region will be influenced by climate change since weather conditions influence their emergence. For
[...] Read more.
The Mediterranean region is vulnerable to climatic changes. A warming trend exists in the basin with changes in rainfall patterns. It is expected that vector-borne diseases (VBD) in the region will be influenced by climate change since weather conditions influence their emergence. For some diseases (i.e., West Nile virus) the linkage between emergence andclimate change was recently proved; for others (such as dengue) the risk for local transmission is real. Consequently, adaptation and preparation for changing patterns of VBD distribution is crucial in the Mediterranean basin. We analyzed six representative Mediterranean countries and found that they have started to prepare for this threat, but the preparation levels among them differ, and policy mechanisms are limited and basic. Furthermore, cross-border cooperation is not stable and depends on international frameworks. The Mediterranean countries should improve their adaptation plans, and develop more cross-sectoral, multidisciplinary and participatory approaches. In addition, based on experience from existing local networks in advancing national legislation and trans-border cooperation, we outline recommendations for a regional cooperation framework. We suggest that a stable and neutral framework is required, and that it should address the characteristics and needs of African, Asian and European countries around the Mediterranean in order to ensure participation. Such a regional framework is essential to reduce the risk of VBD transmission, since the vectors of infectious diseases know no political borders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases)
Open AccessArticle Modelling Anopheles gambiae s.s. Population Dynamics with Temperature- and Age-Dependent Survival
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(6), 5975-6005; doi:10.3390/ijerph120605975
Received: 31 March 2015 / Revised: 21 May 2015 / Accepted: 21 May 2015 / Published: 28 May 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1186 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Climate change and global warming are emerging as important threats to human health, particularly through the potential increase in vector- and water-borne diseases. Environmental variables are known to affect substantially the population dynamics and abundance of the poikilothermic vectors of disease, but the
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Climate change and global warming are emerging as important threats to human health, particularly through the potential increase in vector- and water-borne diseases. Environmental variables are known to affect substantially the population dynamics and abundance of the poikilothermic vectors of disease, but the exact extent of this sensitivity is not well established. Focusing on malaria and its main vector in Africa, Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto, we present a set of novel mathematical models of climate-driven mosquito population dynamics motivated by experimental data suggesting that in An. gambiae, mortality is temperature and age dependent. We compared the performance of these models to that of a “standard” model ignoring age dependence. We used a longitudinal dataset of vector abundance over 36 months in sub-Saharan Africa for comparison between models that incorporate age dependence and one that does not, and observe that age-dependent models consistently fitted the data better than the reference model. This highlights that including age dependence in the vector component of mosquito-borne disease models may be important to predict more reliably disease transmission dynamics. Further data and studies are needed to enable improved fitting, leading to more accurate and informative model predictions for the An. gambiae malaria vector as well as for other disease vectors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases)
Open AccessArticle A Method for Screening Climate Change-Sensitive Infectious Diseases
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(1), 767-783; doi:10.3390/ijerph120100767
Received: 9 September 2014 / Accepted: 18 December 2014 / Published: 14 January 2015
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1984 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Climate change is a significant and emerging threat to human health, especially where infectious diseases are involved. Because of the complex interactions between climate variables and infectious disease components (i.e., pathogen, host and transmission environment), systematically and quantitatively screening for infectious
[...] Read more.
Climate change is a significant and emerging threat to human health, especially where infectious diseases are involved. Because of the complex interactions between climate variables and infectious disease components (i.e., pathogen, host and transmission environment), systematically and quantitatively screening for infectious diseases that are sensitive to climate change is still a challenge. To address this challenge, we propose a new statistical indicator, Relative Sensitivity, to identify the difference between the sensitivity of the infectious disease to climate variables for two different climate statuses (i.e., historical climate and present climate) in non-exposure and exposure groups. The case study in Anhui Province, China has demonstrated the effectiveness of this Relative Sensitivity indicator. The application results indicate significant sensitivity of many epidemic infectious diseases to climate change in the form of changing climatic variables, such as temperature, precipitation and absolute humidity. As novel evidence, this research shows that absolute humidity has a critical influence on many observed infectious diseases in Anhui Province, including dysentery, hand, foot and mouth disease, hepatitis A, hemorrhagic fever, typhoid fever, malaria, meningitis, influenza and schistosomiasis. Moreover, some infectious diseases are more sensitive to climate change in rural areas than in urban areas. This insight provides guidance for future health inputs that consider spatial variability in response to climate change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases)
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Review

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Open AccessReview GIS and Remote Sensing Use in the Exploration of Lyme Disease Epidemiology
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(12), 15182-15203; doi:10.3390/ijerph121214971
Received: 25 March 2015 / Revised: 9 September 2015 / Accepted: 21 October 2015 / Published: 1 December 2015
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (974 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Given the relatively recent recognition of Lyme disease (LD) by CDC in 1990 as a nationally notifiable infectious condition, the rise of reported human cases every year argues for a better understanding of its geographic scope. The aim of this inquiry was to
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Given the relatively recent recognition of Lyme disease (LD) by CDC in 1990 as a nationally notifiable infectious condition, the rise of reported human cases every year argues for a better understanding of its geographic scope. The aim of this inquiry was to explore research conducted on spatiotemporal patterns of Lyme disease in order to identify strategies for implementing vector and reservoir-targeted interventions. The focus of this review is on the use of GIS-based methods to study populations of the reservoir hosts, vectors and humans in addition to the spatiotemporal interactions between these populations. New GIS-based studies are monitoring occurrence at the macro-level, and helping pinpoint areas of occurrence at the micro-level, where spread within populations of reservoir hosts, clusters of infected ticks and tick to human transmission may be better understood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases)
Open AccessReview Prototype Early Warning Systems for Vector-Borne Diseases in Europe
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(6), 6333-6351; doi:10.3390/ijerph120606333
Received: 11 March 2015 / Revised: 21 May 2015 / Accepted: 25 May 2015 / Published: 2 June 2015
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (2715 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Globalization and environmental change, social and demographic determinants and health system capacity are significant drivers of infectious diseases which can also act as epidemic precursors. Thus, monitoring changes in these drivers can help anticipate, or even forecast, an upsurge of infectious diseases. The
[...] Read more.
Globalization and environmental change, social and demographic determinants and health system capacity are significant drivers of infectious diseases which can also act as epidemic precursors. Thus, monitoring changes in these drivers can help anticipate, or even forecast, an upsurge of infectious diseases. The European Environment and Epidemiology (E3) Network has been built for this purpose and applied to three early warning case studies: (1) The environmental suitability of malaria transmission in Greece was mapped in order to target epidemiological and entomological surveillance and vector control activities. Malaria transmission in these areas was interrupted in 2013 through such integrated preparedness and response activities. (2) Since 2010, recurrent West Nile fever outbreaks have ensued in South/eastern Europe. Temperature deviations from a thirty year average proved to be associated with the 2010 outbreak. Drivers of subsequent outbreaks were computed through multivariate logistic regression models and included monthly temperature anomalies for July and a normalized water index. (3) Dengue is a tropical disease but sustained transmission has recently emerged in Madeira. Autochthonous transmission has also occurred repeatedly in France and in Croatia mainly due to travel importation. The risk of dengue importation into Europe in 2010 was computed with the volume of international travelers from dengue affected areas worldwide.These prototype early warning systems indicate that monitoring drivers of infectious diseases can help predict vector-borne disease threats. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change Impacts on Vector-borne Diseases)

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