Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Trends Parasitol. 2008 Jul;24(7):304-9. doi: 10.1016/j.pt.2008.04.003.

Why apply ecological laws to epidemiology?

Author information

1
Institut des Sciences de l'Evolution, CNRS, Département Génétique Environnement, CC065, Université Montpellier 2, 34095, Montpellier cedex 05, France. serge.morand@univ-montp2.fr

Abstract

Using ecological laws, or rules, is a useful strategy for epidemiological observations. The application of Taylor's power law to epidemiology and evolutionary ecology of parasites is exemplified here. Taylor's power law takes the form of s2=amb, where s2 is the variance in population abundance, m is the mean abundance of the population, a represents a constant parameter and b represents an index of spatial heterogeneity. Although Taylor's power law reflects the aggregation of parasite (or pathogen) individuals among host population, the values of b could reflect regulation processes in host-parasite systems. Illustrations are given showing how b value is linked to various epidemiological situations: pathogen emergence, the impact of vaccination or the level of host immune defence.

PMID:
18514576
DOI:
10.1016/j.pt.2008.04.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center