Estimating the temporal and spatial risk of bluetongue related to the incursion of infected vectors into Switzerland

Racloz, V., Venter, G., Griot, C. and Stark, K. D. C. (2008) Estimating the temporal and spatial risk of bluetongue related to the incursion of infected vectors into Switzerland. BMC Veterinary Research, 4 42.1-42.10. doi:10.1186/1746-6148-4-42

Author Racloz, V.
Venter, G.
Griot, C.
Stark, K. D. C.
Title Estimating the temporal and spatial risk of bluetongue related to the incursion of infected vectors into Switzerland
Journal name BMC Veterinary Research   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1746-6148
Publication date 2008-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1186/1746-6148-4-42
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 4
Start page 42.1
End page 42.10
Total pages 10
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher BioMed Central
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: The design of veterinary and public health surveillance systems has been improved by the ability to combine Geographical Information Systems (GIS), mathematical models and up to date epidemiological knowledge. In Switzerland, an early warning system was developed for detecting the incursion of the bluetongue disease virus (BT) and to monitor the frequency of its vectors. Based on data generated by this surveillance system, GIS and transmission models were used in order to determine suitable seasonal vector habitat locations and risk periods for a larger and more targeted surveillance program.
Results: Combined thematic maps of temperature, humidity and altitude were created to visualize the association with Culicoides vector habitat locations. Additional monthly maps of estimated basic reproduction number transmission rates (R0) were created in order to highlight areas of Switzerland prone to higher BT outbreaks in relation to both vector activity and transmission levels. The maps revealed several foci of higher risk areas, especially in northern parts of Switzerland, suitable for both vector presence and vector activity for 2006.
Results showed a variation of R0 values comparing 2005 and 2006 yet suggested that Switzerland was at risk of an outbreak of BT, especially if the incursion arrived in a suitable vector activity period. Since the time of conducting these analyses, this suitability has proved to be the case with the recent outbreaks of BT in northern Switzerland.
Conclusion: Our results stress the importance of environmental factors and their effect on the dynamics of a vector-borne disease. In this case, results of this model were used as input parameters for creating a national targeted surveillance program tailored to both the spatial and the temporal aspect of the disease and its vectors. In this manner, financial and logistic resources can be used in an optimal way through seasonally and geographically adjusted surveillance efforts. This model can serve as a tool for other vector-borne diseases including human zoonotic vectors which are likely to spread into Europe.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ
Additional Notes Article # 42

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Public Health Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 21 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Thu, 31 May 2012, 09:38:31 EST by Vanessa Racloz on behalf of School of Public Health