Thursday, May 5, 2016

Literature Review on the Impacts of Climate Change on Infectious Diseases

Impact of climate change on human infectious diseases: Empirical evidence and human adaptation (10 page pdf, Xiaoxu Wu, Yongmei Lu, Sen Zhou, Lifan Chen, Bing Xu, Environment International, Jan. 2016)

Today we review an analysis of literature concerning the links between weather and climate and the spread of infectious diseases which need three ingredients: a pathogen or source, a vector or host and a transmission environment. Climate change can change the geographical and seasonal distribution of diseases while weather (especially extreme weather events) affects the timing and intensity of disease outbreaks. Shifts in precipitation patterns can have impacts on water-borne pathogens while stronger wind patterns can extend the spatial distribution of mosquitoes and the spread of diseases such as malaria.

 infectious diseases and ck ch  

Key Quotes:

 “Three components are essential for most infectious diseases: an agent (or pathogen), a host (or vector) and transmission environment” “long-term climate warming tends to favor the geographic expansion of several infectious diseases … and that extreme weather events may help create the opportunities for more clustered disease outbreaks or outbreaks at non-traditional places and time “

“Overall, climate conditions constrain the geographic and seasonal distributions of infectious diseases, and weather affects the timing and intensity of disease outbreaks” “Pathogen refers to a wide range of disease agents, including virus, bacterium, parasite germ, and fungi. The impact of climate change on pathogens can be direct, through influencing the survival, reproduction, and life cycle of pathogens, or indirect, through influencing the habitat, environment, or competitors of pathogens.”

 “Climate change may cause shifts in precipitation, which affects the dissemination of water-borne pathogens. Rainfall plays an important role in the development of water-borne disease pathogens. Rainy season is related to the increase of fecal pathogens as heavy rain may stir up sediments in water, leading to the accumulation of fecal microorganisms”

 “some vector-borne human infectious diseases, including malaria, African trypanosomiasis, Lyme disease, tick-borne encephalitis, yellow fever, plague, and dengue have distributed to a wider range”

 “Wind may affect the malaria cycle both negatively and positively. Strong wind can reduce the biting opportunities for mosquitoes, but can extend their flight distance. During a monsoon season, wind is able to change the spatial distribution of mosquitoes”

“The following adaptation measures are recommended:
  1. to go beyond empirical observations of the association between climate change and infectious diseases and develop more scientific explanations,
  2. to improve the prediction of spatial–temporal process of climate change and the associated shifts in infectious diseases at various spatial and temporal scales, and
  3. to establish locally effective early warning systems for the health effects of predicated climate change.”

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