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Assessing the future threat from vivax malaria in the United Kingdom using two markedly different modelling approaches .

Lindsay, S.W. and Hole, D.G. and Hutchinson, R.A. and Richards, S.A. and Willis, S.G. (2010) 'Assessing the future threat from vivax malaria in the United Kingdom using two markedly different modelling approaches .', Malaria journal., 9 .

Abstract

Background The world is facing an increased threat from new and emerging diseases, and there is concern that climate change will expand areas suitable for transmission of vector borne diseases. The likelihood of vivax malaria returning to the UK was explored using two markedly different modelling approaches. First, a simple temperature-dependent, process-based model of malaria growth transmitted by Anopheles atroparvus, the historical vector of malaria in the UK. Second, a statistical model using logistic-regression was used to predict historical malaria incidence between 1917 and 1918 in the UK, based on environmental and demographic data. Using findings from these models and saltmarsh distributions, future risk maps for malaria in the UK were produced based on UKCIP02 climate change scenarios. Results The process-based model of climate suitability showed good correspondence with historical records of malaria cases. An analysis of the statistical models showed that mean temperature of the warmest month of the year was the major factor explaining the distribution of malaria, further supporting the use of the temperature-driven processed-based model. The risk maps indicate that large areas of central and southern England could support malaria transmission today and could increase in extent in the future. Confidence in these predictions is increased by the concordance between the processed-based and statistical models. Conclusion Although the future climate in the UK is favourable for the transmission of vivax malaria, the future risk of locally transmitted malaria is considered low because of low vector biting rates and the low probability of vectors feeding on a malaria-infected person.

Item Type:Article
Full text:PDF - Published Version (1790Kb)
Status:Peer-reviewed
Publisher Web site:http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-9-70
Publisher statement:This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Record Created:22 Sep 2010 14:35
Last Modified:01 Oct 2010 12:32

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