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Proc Biol Sci. 2017 Aug 16;284(1860). pii: 20170901. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2017.0901.

Identifying climate drivers of infectious disease dynamics: recent advances and challenges ahead.

Author information

1
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA cmetcalf@princeton.edu.
2
Office of Population Research, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA.
3
Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, Yale School of Public Health, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA.
4
Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Helath, Baltimore, MD, USA.
5
Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
6
Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
7
NOAA/GFDL, Princeton, NJ, USA.
8
Flowminder Foundation, Stockholm, Sweden.
9
WorldPop project, Department of Geography and Environment, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK.
10
Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA.

Abstract

Climate change is likely to profoundly modulate the burden of infectious diseases. However, attributing health impacts to a changing climate requires being able to associate changes in infectious disease incidence with the potentially complex influences of climate. This aim is further complicated by nonlinear feedbacks inherent in the dynamics of many infections, driven by the processes of immunity and transmission. Here, we detail the mechanisms by which climate drivers can shape infectious disease incidence, from direct effects on vector life history to indirect effects on human susceptibility, and detail the scope of variation available with which to probe these mechanisms. We review approaches used to evaluate and quantify associations between climate and infectious disease incidence, discuss the array of data available to tackle this question, and detail remaining challenges in understanding the implications of climate change for infectious disease incidence. We point to areas where synthesis between approaches used in climate science and infectious disease biology provide potential for progress.

KEYWORDS:

climate; climate change; infection; mathematical model; mechanism; statistical model

PMID:
28814655
PMCID:
PMC5563806
DOI:
10.1098/rspb.2017.0901
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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