Geographical analysis of the distribution and spread of human rabies in China from 2005 to 2011

Guo, Danhuai, Zhou, Hang, Zou, Yan, Yin, Wenwu, Yu, Hongjie, Si, Yali, Li, Jianhui, Zhou, Yuanchun, Zhou, Xiaoyan and Soares Magalhaes, Ricardo J. (2013) Geographical analysis of the distribution and spread of human rabies in China from 2005 to 2011. PLoS One, 8 8: e72352.1-e72352.10. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0072352

Author Guo, Danhuai
Zhou, Hang
Zou, Yan
Yin, Wenwu
Yu, Hongjie
Si, Yali
Li, Jianhui
Zhou, Yuanchun
Zhou, Xiaoyan
Soares Magalhaes, Ricardo J.
Title Geographical analysis of the distribution and spread of human rabies in China from 2005 to 2011
Journal name PLoS One   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication date 2013-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0072352
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 8
Issue 8
Start page e72352.1
End page e72352.10
Total pages 10
Place of publication San Francisco, CA, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Rabies is a significant public health problem in China in that it records the second highest case incidence globally. Surveillance data on canine rabies in China is lacking and human rabies notifications can be a useful indicator of areas where animal and human rabies control could be integrated. Previous spatial epidemiological studies lacked adequate spatial resolution to inform targeted rabies control decisions. We aimed to describe the spatiotemporal distribution of human rabies and model its geographical spread to provide an evidence base to inform future integrated rabies control strategies in China.

Methods: We geo-referenced a total of 17,760 human rabies cases of China from 2005 to 2011. In our spatial analyses we used Gaussian kernel density analysis, average nearest neighbor distance, Spatial Temporal Density-Based Spatial Clustering of Applications with Noise and developed a model of rabies spatiotemporal spread.

Findings: Human rabies cases increased from 2005 to 2007 and decreased during 2008 to 2011 companying change of the spatial distribution. The ANN distance among human rabies cases increased between 2005 and 2011, and the degree of clustering of human rabies cases decreased during that period. A total 480 clusters were detected by ST-DBSCAN, 89.4% clusters initiated before 2007. Most of clusters were mainly found in South of China. The number and duration of cluster decreased significantly after 2008. Areas with the highest density of human rabies cases varied spatially each year and in some areas remained with high outbreak density for several years. Though few places have recovered from human rabies, most of affected places are still suffering from the disease.

Conclusion: Human rabies in mainland China is geographically clustered and its spatial extent changed during 2005 to 2011. The results provide a scientific basis for public health authorities in China to improve human rabies control and prevention program.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
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